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Shoestring Staging

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By : Carlos Montes    99 or more times read
With less money to go around in our economy these days, it’s more important than ever to do as much as we can with as little as we have; this is true in all aspects of our lives, right down to selling our homes. For many people who’re struggling financially these days the idea of spending at least hundreds of dollars on home staging is more than a little extravagant. Home staging isn’t rocket science, it’s art; and like many art forms, it can be accomplished to a reasonable degree if you take some time to understand the fundamentals of what home staging tries to accomplish.

Home staging fulfills the purpose of showcasing your home for prospective buyers to see exactly what your home is all about while allowing them to picture themselves living in the home. Home staging works by depersonalizing and creating a generic appeal to buyers by neutralizing the current owners’ personality and giving the home a more “show home” personality.

The basic steps of home staging are decluttering and depersonalizing, cleaning and repairing, and setting the stage.

When you declutter and depersonalize your home, you should pack away at least 50% of your belongings in your home as well as seasonal clothes, holiday decorations, family pictures, knickknacks, and any extra pieces of furniture that are crowding your rooms. Try to reduce the contents of your rooms to a minimalist level and keep useless belongings out of the way to reduce distractions. The less ‘stuff’ that is in your home, the more space it will appear to have. The more reminders of your family that a prospective buyer sees in your home, the less likely they will see themselves living in your space; your personal items make them feel a bit like uninvited guests.

During the cleaning and repairing part of home staging you will work through your home, room by room, and clean and repair things as you progress through the house; this saves you from getting overwhelmed by the job. Make sure that you clean the flooring, wash and paint the walls (and the ceiling, if you can manage it), and wash the windows—inside and out. Take the time to fix lose baseboards, lifting vinyl, and loose closet doors, among other things. Remember that the outside of your home, as well as your yard, will need this treatment too.

The last step is setting the stage for prospective buyers. Take some time to look at magazine pictures of show homes to get ideas for how you can stage your home. Staging should give your home an almost hotel-feeling to it; buyers should feel welcome and comfortable.

Even if you can’t afford to hire a professional stager, it’s important to set the stage yourself for any buyers who come to tour your home. Home staging helps homes sell faster and usually nets sellers more money than they would otherwise get from selling their home without staging. Take the plunge and do it yourself!
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