The 6 Dos and Don’ts of Successful Home Staging

Published on
October 24, 2023
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Home staging is not the same as decorating. While interior decorating is based on individual preference. Home staging is the creation of a blank canvas, where potential buyers can easily envision themselves living. Done right, home staging ups the perceived value of your property and could increase the actual value by 6-10%. Done wrong, properties could stay on the market longer, decreasing its perceived value and interest in the eyes of potential buyers. Having staged homes all over the San Francisco Bay Area, we’ve become attuned to what successful home staging looks like and the dos and don’ts involved.

DON’T use your own or the seller subjective style as a guide.

There’s a tendency to equate interior design with home staging. But while interior design is totally subjective to your own individual style, a staged home needs to appeal to a large portion of potential buyers. This might require you to repaint any brightly colored rooms and replace any avante-garden furnishings with something more standard. It is common to mix up interior design with home staging. However, while interior design reflects personal taste, a staged home should attract a broad range of potential buyers. This could mean repainting any vibrant rooms and replacing conventional furnishings with more modern options.

DO involve the seller in the staging process.

Home stager and real estate agent should be the driving force behind the home staging design. But including the seller builds trust and a better working relationship. At the end of the day, they are the client and should be treated as such. Home stager should work around their schedule and keep seller informed throughout the staging process.  The staging design should be primarily overseen by stagers and real estate agents. However, involving the seller in the process fosters trust and enhances the working relationship. Ultimately, they are the ones who have hired the professionals home stager and should be treated as valued clients. Stagers should accommodate the seller schedule and regularly update them on the progress to stage a home.

DON’T leave the home look feeling empty or cold.

If you leave rooms bare or with only very minimal furniture, the space can feel cold and uninviting to potential buyers. Soften the edges with a few accessories, plants, or rugs that give off a more homey feel without creating clutter.  When you have empty or sparsely furnished rooms, they might give off a chilly and unwelcoming vibe to potential buyers. Add some accessories, plants, or rugs to create a cozy atmosphere without making it look messy.

DO declutter and depersonalize.

Too much clutter can make the home feel small and personal items can make potential buyers feel like they’re intruding two things that could turn people away from your property. Be sure to box up and remove any unnecessary or personal items before staging. These include trophies, souvenirs, family portraits and vacation pictures anything that makes a house look like your home instead of a home.

DON’T rely on any single design or color scheme.

Ensuring harmony in the color scheme is crucial when staging a home. If the walls, furniture, and decor closely mirror one another, it can drain the room's energy and result in flat or uninteresting photographs. The same principle applies to a monochromatic design; if all elements share too similar a palette, the house may appear less appealing and less exciting to potential buyers.

DO create contrast.

Finding the right balance in your home's style is essential. While it's tempting to believe that an ultra-modern, minimalist approach suits every space, an excess of modernity can make it feel sterile and unwelcoming. Injecting contrast adds interest and a comforting warmth. For homeowners aiming to sell your home, consider blending Midcentury aesthetics with industrial touches or introducing Bohemian furnishings to complement a predominantly coastal theme. Incorporating round tables in rectilinear spaces and a thoughtful mix of materials, along with fresh flowers, light fixtures and throw pillows, can add that extra layer of appeal to areas like the living room or bedroom. It's often the little touches that make the home sale not just attractive but genuinely exciting for potential buyers

DON’T cover up poor structural or mechanical problems.

Home staging isn’t meant to hide structural flaws and deceive potential buyers. At some point, likely before the sale is finalized, the prospective buyer will inspect the home. And if they learn you tried to cover up any major issues, it makes you and the property much less attractive to other potential buyers. Fixing major structural or mechanical problems (like the roof, sprinklers, or plumbing) is always worth the investment.  

DO minimize flaws and accentuate assets.

To stage a house, a strategic staging choices can make your home seem bigger and dimly lit rooms seem brighter. Frame large windows to highlight them. Hang wall decor to cover up small imperfections. Place focal points to detract attention from less attractive elements. There’s a lot that can be done to improve your home’s perceived value without needing to remodel the entire house. Making thoughtful decisions about how you arrange the rooms can give the illusion that your home is more spacious and make poorly lit areas appear lighter. Draw attention to large windows by putting frames around them. Use wall decorations to mask any minor flaws. Create focal points to divert attention away from less appealing features. There are numerous ways to enhance the perceived worth of your home look without having to completely renovate it.

DON’T forget about the home’s exterior.

First impressions definitely count. There's no point in having an immaculate interior if no one walks through the front door to look at it. To stage your home effectively, entice potential buyers with a clean exterior and inviting entranceway. Making a good first impression is essential. It is pointless to have a flawless inside if nobody comes in through the main entrance to see it. Attract potential customers by maintaining a tidy outside and a welcoming entrance.

DO think about curb appeal.

Good curb appeal makes people curious about what the interior looks like. To make your home look more inviting, relatively minor adjustments like roof repairs, repainting the walls, cleaning the driveway, and tidying the front yard can make a world of difference. No landscape artist required. And now you’re much more likely to get prospective buyers to take a look inside.

DON’T go it alone.

Home staging requires much more than just dusting off countertops. You will need to scrub tiles, clean the grout, steam clean carpets and drapes, muck out the pool, polish the windows, mow the front lawn, and triple-check that everything is in good working condition. And that doesn’t even cover the “staging” part. Instead of trying to do everything yourself, get help. Hire a professional cleaning service to prep the house. And get a home staging services to do all the heavy lifting and marketing for you.

DO hire a professional staging service.

BoldRM Interior Group knows exactly what people in the San Francisco Bay Area are looking for when they need to stage a house and how best to incorporate those characteristics into your home staging. Our professional stager will know how to enhance your home’s best features, like that gorgeous view or spacious kitchen. We want to make the entire process as quick and painless as possible to get your home sell faster, finding the right time on the market.

Schedule a consultation with one of our expert home stagers, and we'll seamlessly blend your vision with our expertise to construct a picture-perfect interior that not only entices potential buyers but also helps buyers see their ideal living space. Whether your goal is to sell a house quickly or present a move-in ready haven, our stager team excels in creating environments that elevate the property's appeal and increase its market value. Successful home staging is a nuanced process that extends beyond good design aesthetics. It involves not only artistic flair but also relies on effective marketing strategies, adept project management, and a profound understanding of the real estate business. During the consultation, we can also discuss the cost to stage, ensuring transparency and a clear understanding of the investment involved in showcasing your property at its best.

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