At one point in time or another everyone has been told not judge a book by its cover. Unfortunately — or perhaps fortunately under some circumstances — this is nearly impossible to do, because humans are, by their very nature, highly visual beings. People can’t help but looking at and judging things that are catch their eyes, whether it’s for better or for worse! So when it comes to real estate for sale, it’s important for realtors to be aware of this in order to stage the property in the best, and most enticing way possible.
Although the real estate market has done a good job of recovering since it was dealt such devastating blows during the Great Recession, realtors still have their work cut out for them in certain markets. The Recession and all it’s crushing financial effects have left potential home buyers more cautious and wary than ever before. They’re battle scarred and shell shocked, and may not be so eager to put an offer in on a home after learning hard lessons during the Recession. Sure, most real estate markets aren’t just surviving but thriving, but that doesn’t mean homeowners are so quick to forget the impact of the Recession.
Properly staging a home or any kind of real estate for sale is the best way to increase its curb appeal and and assuage the financial fears of prospective buyers. Especially in terms of residential real estate, staging a home allows the potential buyer to envision themselves in it. And when a potential buyer feels as though they’ve found the home of their dreams instead of the home of their nightmares, they’re way more likely to put up a sizable offer instead of moving onto something else.
But just like any other kind of interior design or decorating, staging a home or any other kind of real estate for sale can seem intimidating. The good news is that staging doesn’t have to be hard or difficult — it’s just as much about common sense and courtesy as it is about making things look shiny and pretty. While it’s true that certain kinds of real estate for sale, such as beach properties, have the advantage of a beautiful view or environment to their benefit (which makes staging incredibly easy), you can stage any property regardless of location so that it looks and feels like a million bucks.
First and foremost, cleanliness is key in terms of staging. Getting a property as clean as possible is key when it comes to real estate for sale. Clean as if your picky and judgmental mother in law was coming over for dinner, or pretend that you were inviting over a date that you wanted to impress. Better yet, hire a team of professional cleaners to get the job done by scrubbing the property from top to bottom. For example, did you know that grimy bathroom walls are a major turn off for potential home buyers?
Another key to staging real estate for sale is to play up the property’s curb appeal or create it if it doesn’t have any. This can be achieved in a number of ways, with lawn and landscaping maintenance being among the most important. Be sure that the yard is well kept, which means the grass should be kept short, lush, plush, and green with no bald spots, weeds, eyesores, or otherwise unhealthy looking areas.
In addition, the landscaping should also be well maintained, and should incorporate native plant species when at all possible. This helps to play up the home’s ecofriendly and sustainability factor, which is important to many potential home buyers. Adding potted flowers and colorful plants is also a great way to catch the eye of prospective buyers.
Staging should also include playing up a property’s unique interior features. For example, of it’s a historic home that includes stunning woodwork and exposed brick walls, then it’s important to emphasize these features to allow them to standout. Staging can also be used to distract viewers from eyesores.