Important notes on staging...
Staging. This topic can be polarizing in the real estate world. In its purest form, it's a way to make a home ready for company. As a potential seller, your role can be divided into three basic categories: preparing to enter the market, making it showing appointment ready, and of course, making arrangements when the property is actually shown. In other words, minimize the clutter and personal effects so that the home showcases its ideal potential, and making sure you are out of the home for the showings. Often times, when clients have lived in the home for a long time, they forget to take their personal feelings for the spaces out of the equation. It's always a good idea to envision how strangers might view the space--your realtor is a great sounding block for how to do this.
Here are some quick staging tips for how to...
Minimize clutter, if possible, pack away all unnecessary items. If the boxes cannot be kept at a family members home or a storage facility, be sure it is stacked neat and orderly in the garage. I always tell clients to pack away everything they can and "camp" in their home until it is sold.
Minimize personal photos, religious items, weapons or any items that could be polarizing. You wouldn't want something like your religion or political affiliation to deter a sale.
Pay attention to those bookshelves and inside cabinets. Clutter in those areas, or poorly stacked items, can denote to a potential buyer that the home is lacking in storage.
If you have any wild or bold colors on walls, consider light colors (gray, beige, cream, white) to make your spaces feel clean and open. Walls with murals, your children's names, etc, can be a deterrent to potential buyers.
Replace burnt out lightbulbs, recover any that are missing their globes, etc.
Consider the different focal points of a home. This includes porches, patios etc.... For instance, would a potted plant, repainted light fixture (or replacement), new doormats, etc, provide a more welcoming atmosphere?
Wash and Dust. Wash the gunk out of your windows/screens/frames, dust those ceiling fans, clean those AC grates, take a used dryer sheet to your baseboards to eliminate the grime. A little elbow grease goes a long way to making the home shine and indicate to the buyers that the home is well taken care--this eliminates some concern for other major issues that could arise with the home.
Don't forget to mow! It would be a sad day if you spend all the time and money to stage your home and then you forget to mow/weed eat/etc for a few weeks.
If possible, consider picking out a simple, low cost item to give your space more bang for your buck. Be sure every space has a purpose.