Ten Secret Tips to Help With Home Staging
Learn how to highlight your home’s strengths, downplay its weaknesses, and appeal to the greatest possible pool of prospective home buyers with these 10 great home staging tips.
Less is More
One of the most important things to remember when preparing your home for showings is to get rid of clutter. Make it a house rule that for every new item you bring in, an old one has to leave. A major contributor to a cluttered look is too much furniture. Professional home stagers often whisk away half of an owner’s furniture when preparing a house for a sale, making the house appear larger and more spacious. You may not have to go to such drastic lengths as to remove half, but do take a hard look at what you have and ask yourself what you can live without.
There’s a common misconception that a room will feel larger and be easier to use if all of the furniture is placed against the walls, but this is not the case. Repositioning furniture by floating it away from the walls and creating cozy, conversational groups with sofas and chairs makes traffic flow in a room obvious. Not only will this make the space more user friendly, it will also open the room up and make it seem larger.
Don’t be afraid to move furniture, artwork, and accessories from room to room around the house to freshen up a certain look. Just because you bought an armchair for the living room doesn’t mean it won’t look great anchoring a sitting area in the study or bedroom. Try positioning an old dining room table near a pretty window, topping it with buffet lamps and other accessories and using it as a new beautiful writing desk or library table.
One way to make your home feel warm and inviting is great lighting. As it turns out, most homes are inadequately lighted. To remedy the problem, increase the wattage in your lamps and other light fixtures. There should be about 100 watts for each 50 square feet. It’s not wise to depend on just one or two fixtures per room either. Aim for these tree types of lighting in a room: ambient (general or overhead), task (pendant, under-cabinet or reading), and accent (table and wall).
To make a room appear larger than it really is, paint the walls the same color as the adjacent room. If you have a small kitchen and dining area, a seamless look will make both of these rooms feel like one large space. You can make a sun porch look bigger and more inviting by painting the walls a shade of green to reflect the nature colors outside. Another design trick: To create the illusion of more space, paint the walls the same color as your drapery. The result is a seamless and sophisticated look.
Experimenting with Color
Don’t be afraid of darker color palettes in a powder room, dining room, or bedroom. A deep tone on the walls can make the space more intimate, dramatic, and cozy. You don’t always have to go all out and use the darker color on every wall — you can just paint an accent wall to draw attention to a fireplace or a great set of windows. If you have a built-in bookcase or niche, experiment with painting the insides of the shelves a color hat will make them pop.
Creative Works in Creative Spaces
If you’ve designed your home like most other homeowners, chances are you’ve hung artwork in a high line encircling each room. This is a big mistake. Placing creative works and prints in such stereotypical spaces can render them almost invisible. Display art creatively so it stands out and shows off our space. Break up that stereotypical line and vary the patterning and grouping.
Arranging the right accessories can make a room more inviting. When it comes to eye pleasing accessorizing, odd numbers are preferable, especially in groups of three. Rather than creating a line of accessories, imagine a triangle and place an accessory object at each point. Scale is important as well, so be sure to vary the height and width of your object groups with the largest item at the back and the smallest in front. Professional stagers suggest grouping items by color, shape, texture or some other unifying element for optimized effects.
Bring the Outside In
Staged homes are almost always decorated with fresh flowers and expensive orchid arrangements, but you can get a similar effect by simply taking a walk around your yard to bring fresh outdoor elements indoors. Budding magnolia clippings or unfurling ferns express the arrival of spring. Add splashes of color in the summer with bright blooms, or warm up your décor with blazing fall foliage on chilly autumn days. Bright holly branches full of berries can turn any home into a cheerful winter wonderland.
If you can’t afford a full kitchen makeover just get new doors and drawer fronts. Paint everything to match and add some new hardware. Instead of replacing an entire dishwasher or oven, you may be able to get a new front panel. Contact the manufacturer to see if replacements are available for your model. If not, you may be able to use laminate paper, which goes on like contact paper to re-cover the existing panel.
Following even just a few of these tips can help you gain a competitive edge when you put your house on the market.
If you are looking to buy or sell a home in the Dallas, University Park, Highland Park, or Preston Hollow areas, contact Emily Price Carrigan.