It’s that time of year again, when sellers are frantically preparing their homes for the spring real estate market. After several years of declines and uncertainty, market values are definitively rising again.
Haddad Hakansson has been helping realtors and clients stage their homes for sale successfully for over 10 years. Here are some tips we’ve learned along the way:
Neutral paint colors sell. You may be able to get away with splashy colors in a perfectly designed room with tons of architectural details, but in general, toning it down can nudge your sales price up. If you are having trouble finding the right neutral, a good place to start is with the Benjamin Moore Historical Colors collection.
Speaking of neutral … consider removing big floral curtains or anything that is too specifically your taste. Pack them up carefully for the trip to the next house. Ask a friend for advice if you aren’t sure.
Declutter those shelves, closets and everything else. If you are a book lover, pack up at least half of them and store them neatly in the basement or garage. Same with your clothing. Even smaller storage spaces can look more generous if you let your items breathe.
Take a hard look at your family photos. Are they everywhere? If so, try to put most of them away. Buyers like to envision themselves – not your family – in the home. However, if you have a beautifully arranged and modern gallery in a hallway or on a feature wall, consider leaving it up as inspiration to your buyers.
Make your bathrooms sparkle. Even a dated bathroom can look fresher with a good scrubbing, clean grout and a fresh coat or two of mildew-resistant paint. Have an ugly, old glass tub enclosure? Look to see if you can locate the screws to remove it. Take it out and gently scrape off old caulk or adhesive with a razor scraper. Clean, caulk any small holes and hang a pretty shower curtain and some new towels.
This goes for the kitchen too. Clean, clean clean. Clean again, then clear the countertops. The Cuisinart goes into a cabinet (or the attic!).
Clean windows, carpets and everything else. If your trim is white, consider caulking the gaps in the baseboard and moldings.
Hide your pet’s accessories and check to make sure your house has a fresh, neutral smell.
Finally, bring a little life in with a handful of pretty and healthy potted plants. This will keep your pared-down environment from looking too sterile. See how the right plant or arrangement can make a photo look amazing? The same goes for your home:
Still feeling unsure? Consider hiring us for an hour or two and we can help you choose paint colors and handle the finer points of home staging.