Written by Jaymi Naciri
Staging your home is a critical step in getting it sold, but all the recommended updates and upgrades can get pricey. Thankfully, there are tricks you can use to make your home look bigger, better, and brighter, without spending a dime.
- Fix up your floors
Don’t want to pay to replace or refinish your floors? No prob. Grab a brown crayon to fill in divots. A one-to-one mix of olive oil and vinegar rubbed directly on scratched areas will also help make it look new. Or, try this hack that uses walnuts to fix scratches.
Floors look great but don’t sound so hot? “Fix creaky wood floors with a generous dusting of baby powder,” said One Crazy House. “Work it into the cracks until the floor is no longer noisy.”
- Make it sparkle
When selling your home, you need to take the cleaning beyond your typical weekly run-through. Remember that potential buyers will be looking everywhere, including inside drawers and cabinets. They may also open your refrigerator. Make sure to tidy up the inside, wipe up any spills, throw away rotten food, and put a nice big box of baking soda in there to absorb any leftover smells.
- Let the light in
Everyone is looking for “natural light,” so show off what you’ve got by opening up those blinds and drapes. Did you just reveal a bunch of dirty windows and sills? Ewww. Grab that cleaning spray and make them shine. An old toothbrush is a great way to get gunk out of corners and in window tracks. If your place isn’t light and bright, even with all the blinds and drapes drawn, you’ll need to depend on artificial lighting.
Home stagers will tell you there is no more important step when preparing your home for sale.
“If you are serious about staging your home, all clutter must go, end of story,” said Houzz. “It’s not easy, and it may even require utilizing offsite storage (or a nice relative’s garage) temporarily, but it is well worth the trouble.”
Anything that isn’t used regularly or is taking away from the open feel of the house can be packed away. Small appliances and anything else hanging out on countertops can be put in a cabinet if you’re not ready to stick it in a box. You want people to see the bones of the house, not your blender.
While, you’re decluttering, keep personalization in mind. Buyers want to be able to picture themselves living in the home, and they might not be able to do so if they can’t take their eyes off your wall of taxidermy.
- Create closet space
Even if you have the world’s largest walk-in closet in the master bedroom, you can give buyers the impression that there isn’t enough space by overfilling it. Stagers recommend taking half of your clothes and shoes out and packing them away to create some airiness.
- Remove the stink
Does your home greet guests with a big whiff of cat box? Potential home buyers might just turn right back around and get in the car. You also want to make sure your animals aren’t irritating those who are touring or impeding them from entering certain rooms.
- Pull those weeds
You really can’t overestimate the importance of curb appeal today. There are easy and free steps you can take to give buyers a great first impression. Dispose of any visible weeds, leaves, and other unwanted stuff hanging out in the yard. Give your bushes a trim and mow the yard. If you can’t power wash your home, at least wash the outside of the exterior windows that are within eye level.
And don’t forget about the area closest to your front door. Sweep that stoop and make sure your welcome mat is actually welcoming, instead of dusty and dirty.
- Address your furniture
Some of the most common problems in homes when it comes to furniture – there’s too much of it or the arrangement is uninviting.
“Sometimes when sellers are trying to make a small room seem like it’s more spacious, they have a tendency to push all of their furniture against the walls to leave a big open space in the middle. This type of arrangement may leave a lot of open space, but ultimately leaves the interior design looking unfinished – a big turn off for buyers. In this situation, it’s better to create furniture groupings. First, envision the way the space should be used,” said Freshome. “Group the furniture in ways that would make sense for the intended use. You want potential buyers to be able to envision themselves living in your home and one of the quickest ways to do that is by creating a cozy seating area that’s fit for conversation.”
- Borrow stuff
If, at the end of the day, your home still isn’t looking show-ready, maybe it’s time to raid a friend’s house. Have a loved one who has an extra couch that’s more neutral than yours or a couple of great accessories? It’s time to test their love for you.
Elaine Quigley, CBR, CRS, GRI
57 East Main Street, Suite 217
Westborough, MA 01581
Business: (508) 366-4266
Cell: (508) 735-5161
A member of the franchise system of BHH Affiliates, LLC.