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Staging Your Home to Sell for Top Dollar

Getting ready to sell your home? If you want to get top dollar for your property, there are plenty of things you can do to attract potential homebuyers. You could invest in home remodeling projects to give your resale value a boost, but that can be time-intensive and expensive. A more cost-effective solution is home staging. By staging your home for sale, you can sell your home faster and for more money. Below, we share simple tips that can help you prep your home for online listings and home showings!

Clean & Declutter Your Home

The first step of staging your home is cleaning and decluttering. Tidying up your home and clearing out excess belongings doesn’t cost you anything other than time and effort, but it can have a huge impact when it comes to selling your house. For one, your real estate listing photos will look better, which could potentially result in more showings. In addition, buyers who schedule walk-throughs will have a better experience with your home since they won’t find dirty rooms or items crammed into storage spaces.

Don’t have a place to keep belongings while showing your home? Rent a self storage unit! This is a simple and affordable way to temporarily move items out of your home while it’s on the market.

Remove Personal Items

Children's bedroom staged for showing. Photo by Instagram user @stagedby3_

Photo via @stagedby3_

When staging your home, it’s important to remember that buyers want to envision themselves living in your home. If there are too many personal items—or even decoration styles that clash with their idea of how the home should look—it can be distracting and potentially keep them from making an offer. Be sure to take out any photos of your family, kids toys, laundry items, quirky knick-knacks, and other personal items that could be considered distracting during home showings.

Professional home staging companies may even recommend swapping out some of your furniture with newer contemporary pieces. Not only can this freshen up your space for home showings, but it also creates a more neutral, less personalized feel for potential buyers.

Furnish Empty Spaces

Entryway with white and light blue design. Photo by Instagram user @kathykuohome

Photo via @kathykuohome

A common mistake sellers make when staging their homes is leaving rooms empty. Especially with flex spaces, bonus rooms, mudrooms, and entryways, it’s important to show potential homebuyers how these spaces could function. You don’t need to go overboard with decorating empty spots. Just add a few simple pieces of furniture and home decor to make these spaces feel cozier.

Not sure how to decorate and stage empty rooms? If you’re DIY home staging, consider renting furniture. There’s also the cost-effective option of virtual home staging to improve your online listings.

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Let in Natural Light

Whether you’re preparing for real estate photography or home showings, be sure to let some natural light into your home. Good natural light is a major draw for buyers for several reasons:

  • It helps buyers get a better feel for living spaces when looking at online listings.
  • It’s attractive for buyers who want to save on energy costs (like heating and lighting).
  • It typically means better resale value for homes.

Natural light is also beneficial for selling a small home because it can make tight spaces feel bigger and more inviting. When staging your home, be sure to draw back any curtains or blinds and move obstructing furniture out of the way of windows with good views.

Hire a Professional Photographer

High-quality photography is huge when staging your home for sale. Most buyers search for homes on real estate websites like ZillowTrulia, and Realtor.com first before scheduling home showings, so you need online listings with photos that truly show off the best aspects of your home.

Professional real estate photographers understand what appeals to buyers in terms of lighting, angles, and attention to detail, and they know how to capture that in the photos they take. While you or your real estate agent could take photos to save on photography costs, you might not reap the same benefits.

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Choose the Right Paint Color for Your Walls

A fresh coat of paint is a great way to improve any room when staging your home. It can cover up stains and general wear-and-tear that may have gone unnoticed. Common advice for sellers is to go with neutral paint colors that appeal to broader audiences and reflect light, such as beiges, grays, and whites.

That said, according to Zillow, some colors can help sellers see as much as an additional $5,000 on the sale of their homes. For example, Zillow found that homes with “warm-neutral yellow” kitchens sold for an average of $1,360 more than homes with other colors, while homes with bedrooms that used light green or khaki colors boosted a selling price by an average of $1,332.

Spruce Up Your Curb Appeal

Exterior of well-maintained home in Georgia. Photo by Instagram user @ansleyatlanta

Photo via @ansleyatlanta

Potential homebuyers can be turned off by a home that looks untidy from the outside, so it’s important to stage the outside of your home as well. Pruning overgrown plants, trimming trees, and mowing the lawn prior to an open house can make a valuable difference. According to HomeGain, an investment of around $400 or $500 in curb appeal can bring a return of about $2,000 in a home’s selling price.

But try to keep your home’s landscaping simple. While some homebuyers may like the idea of more gardening, others could be discouraged by the amount of upkeep that would be required.

Upgrade Carpets & Floors

Bedroom with wood plank floors. Photo by Instagram user @monarchplank

Photo via @monarchplank

Many real estate pros recommend spending money on floors before selling, but it doesn’t need to be a huge investment. For an estimated average of $600 to $900, brokers reported an increase of about $2,000 in final selling price. That’s an impressive return on investment.

Plus, you may be able to spend even less than that depending on the state of your home. A few well-placed nails can eliminate annoying squeaks, and small projects like repairing broken tile, patching damaged floorboards, and removing carpet could all improve the value of your property.


Need to store personal belongings and spare furniture while staging your home? Extra Space has several self storage facilities located throughout the U.S. that can help. Find secure storage near you!

Pinterest Graphic: Home Staging Tips: Improve Your Home's Sale Price