In the last 9 years my husband & I have moved so many times, we've learned some really great tips & tricks along the way on how to present a warm & welcoming space when selling our house. The time has come AGAIN, we're getting ready to sell & we've only been living here for 2 years. Hopefully we won't be moving again any time soon.
In order to make a good impression it's important to stage the house. It will help increase our chances of a higher price and a quicker sale. It's definitely worth while doing some of these, if not all. Take it from us, we've always been able to sell quickly & for a great price!
Make sure your house seem spacious and inviting for all that come through. You want potential buyers to imagine themselves living here, so make sure to depersonalize all rooms by storing away photos, toys, collectibles, etc. Update with inexpensive decorative items and group in odd numbers when staging.
Check out where we got great deals on all of our home décor items HERE.
First Impression - Make sure you have great curb appeal! The front of your house is the most important thing you'll want to stage. Not only is it the first thing people are going to see when they pull up to your house, it's also a great way to attract new buyers that pass by & see your sign on your front lawn. Make sure you spend the necessary time to spruce it up. Buy landscaping material (fresh sod, bushes & flowers, mulch). Make sure your grass is cut & there are no weeds anywhere. Power/Spray wash the front of your house if it needs it & paint anything that needs touching up (chipping or weathered). For some inexpensive updates, repaint your front door & garage door, buy a new mailbox & replace front door handle.
Declutter - No matter what you have to do... do it.... this is really important! Get some big storage bins and start clearing up any extra items; even furniture needs to go if it's taking up too much space. Rent a storage locker if you have to (that way your house still looks like it has lots of storage room). Get as much as possible off floors & shelves to give the room a more spacious/airy flow. People also tend to peek in cabinets and cupboards to check out storage availability, so make sure to clean out and organize washroom cupboards, cabinets, linen closets & bedroom closets. Buy an inexpensive closet organizer and make your closet look more custom w/ shelving, shoe racks, cabinets and cubbies.
Do the small fixes - Patch up drywall scrapes and holes w/ drywall compound and re-paint any walls that have scuff marks. Also repaint walls that are bold in colour to neutral more calming colours instead. Replace outdated light fixtures (a little remodeling can go a long way). And replace door handle & hinge hardware if metal is starting to look dated/rusted/worn out. Buyers also love stainless steel appliances. If you don't have any, an inexpensive fix is to recoat them w/ stainless steel covers ($20-$30).
Clean before every showing - Always put your best foot forward and showcase a space that is clean. Do a quick wipe down w/ a towel to shine your faucets and hardware. Wipe down any fingerprints/smudges that might be on the fridge, stove & dishwasher using a simple half & half water & vinegar solution. In the bathroom make sure to scrub away mold/mildew from your shower door (replace shower curtain) and any mold/mildew that might be on the grout & tiles in your shower. Use an old toothbrush and scrub w/ vinegar solution. And if it still doesn't look clean, paint/stain it. A lot of people even paint over tile for an inexpensive update.
Do the extras - Get fresh cut flowers (maybe even from your own garden) and put them in a nice decorative vase & make sure to discard once the flowers start to wilt. Spend a bit of money and buy some artwork. Appeal to all the senses! People love a house that smells great too. Spray air-freshner before you leave or put a batch of cookies in the oven (from the ready mix dough) 40 min. before your showing. Never leave burning candles unattended.
Wash all of your windows, on the inside and outside. A clear view is important for buyers to see what's outside their potentially new home. Any windows that may have a not-so-great view, like a brick wall from the house beside yours, should probably be covered up with great drapes during showings. If your windows are old and you don't want to spend the money to replace them, paint frames in white paint to revamp. White paint is the best choice to make your windows look new again. And if your curtains are old and out-dated, I would definitely recommend spending a bit of money replacing them. Home Sense always offers great prices on new designer name drapes ($35-$50 for the set!)
Hide the pet food dishes and any other evidence in your house that would indicate they've ever lived there. Buyers tend to be finicky when it comes to people's pets. Clear off countertop surfaces of small appliances (hide the toaster & the coffee maker). Try to make your washroom look more spa-like. Roll and display towels, along w/ decorative candles or scented reed diffusers. Your toilet lids should always be down for every showing... it's good Feng Shui on any day. Turn on all lights/lamps and open curtains to let in as much natural light as possible.
Don't let your yard fall flat - YES stage your backyard too! Why do all that work on the inside if the outside is going to disappoint. Your lawn should be lush and cut short. Make sure it's not dried out or dead.... if you have to buy fresh sod, do it, it makes a big difference. And all landscaping needs a splash of bright colours from perennial and annual flowers. Plant new flowers in 2-3 complimentary colours (don't use too many different colours) and cover with mulch to give the garden a nice finish. Adding mulch also helps keep your soil moist for longer (yay! less watering), so it's a great solution to finish a garden beautifully & practically. Cut down any dying/dead trees, trim shrubs and pull out weeds.
Make sure (again) that any clutter is tucked away. And clean patio furniture or buy new furniture and spruce up with bright coloured cushions.
Thanks for stopping by!