STAGING FOR DUMMIES
Oliver Sterling says :
Well, first things first… you don’t live in a barn like Me, and even if you do it’s important that your home is neat and tidy when potential buyers are visiting. Have a friend, or my business partner Margot, put an unbiased set of eyes on your home. Ask for some ideas about minimizing clutter, and clearing areas. Clear countertops in the kitchen and bath are important. Put your stuff away. Give it a home. Even if it’s home is back on your countertop 5 minutes after your visitors leave. Your potentials need to be able to visualize their items in your home, help them to this task by creating a near blank palette. Less is MORE.
Next! Assess the “problem” areas. Old wallpaper? Outdated hardware in the kitchen? Grungy looking area rug? Haven’t weeded your flower beds since the late 90’s? Make a list and peck away at it. A fresh coat of paint can change the whole look and feel of a room. And its a quick update that is inexpensive. Same with the hardware. You can pick up some new knobs at Home Depot and install them yourself. Instant update to your cabinets without the zillion dollar price tag. If you have some less than new looking carpet areas, pop in to your local DIY ‘store and pick up a steamer. Or, pull the rug up and see what you’ve got. You just may reveal a beautiful floor below!
Don’t forget to stage the outside! Do you have a great patio space? Show it off. Spruce and organize the outdoor space, sweep or spray down the patio, add a plant or two, roll up the hose, and let your potentials get to visualizing.
Gender neutral. Invest in a nice gender neutral color scheme for the master bedroom. The master is important, and MUST appeal to both a man and woman’s taste. This really is just as easy as a new comforter set! Keep it cool and classy with some nice earth tones, some soft blue, green or greys. Stay away from the flowers and the swirly shapes. Again, less is MORE.
Due to the fact I am an animal myself, I do not whole heartedly agree with this next one, but my partner says it’s important. Muffy and Fluffy need not be present when potential buyers are touring your home. With that said, a visit to the puppy park, or a nice walk on the tow path would be a nice treat for your pets on showing days. Kitties, I’m told, are a little more acceptable as they are usually sleeping somewhere or minding their own business.
First impressions are everything. I have heard my partner, Margot, refer to it as “Curb Appeal”. Your potentials begin their assessment of your beloved home, the minute they step foot out of their vehicle. So make the path to the front door, an esthetically pleasing one. Some nicely pruned hanging baskets, a trusty Kimberly fern, some pumpkins during fall time, a holly wreath in the winter, you get the point. All of these things will make the first impression of your home an inviting one.
Margot McKenna & Oliver Sterling