If you’re selling your home, you’ve probably heard about “staging” it. But what is staging and why should you care?

Simply put, staging is a strategic marketing tool designed to show a property in its best possible light. According to the Real Estate Staging Association, professionally listed staged properties look better; spend 73 percent less time on the market; typically sell for more money; end up on buyers’ “must see” lists; are viewed as “well-maintained”; and have fewer concessions requested of the seller.

Here are a few things you can do to prepare for buyers touring your home:

  •  Half-empty closets: Take out half of what’s in your closets and cabinets and pack it away. (You’ll be moving soon anyway.) Buyers are really impressed by an organized home and ample storage is a key selling point.
  • Lighting: Make sure all light bulbs are working and add a bright lamp or even a new fixture. You’d be amazed at the beautiful fixtures you can find at reasonable prices. (We can help). A well-lit home with updated fixtures looks much brighter, cleaner and prettier.
  • Conceal the pets: Remove and store pet bowls, toys and other objects (and the animals themselves, of course). Not everyone is a pet lover and no one wants to smell the litter box.
  • Reduce and remove: Get rid of half of your belongings. Pack them away. Remove as many photos, knickknacks and other personal items as possible. Buyers need to be able to imagine your home as theirs.
  • Fix the furniture: Arrange furniture to showcase the floor plan of your home or to accentuate its highlights. Float your furniture, don’t put it up against the wall. We can help!
  • Bring the garden inside: Head outside and pick some greenery from your yard and put it in a big, pretty vase.
  • Paint, paint, paint: It’s amazing how a fresh coat of the right color of paint can really transform a home, internally and externally. To maximize smaller spaces, use lighter paint colors to make the room feel larger. Add visual interest and color in smaller ways with accent pieces.
  • Invest in the kitchen and bathrooms: Investing in these rooms sells homes. Paint, freshen up with new towels and hardware, and pack up half of their contents. You can usually count on an 85 percent return on your investment in kitchen and bathroom updates.
  • Curb appeal is key: Clean up the yard and landscape if possible.
  • Embellish: Embellish a neutral room with accent pieces like industrial-style lighting, area rugs with pops of color, vases and textured accessories.
  • Enhance: Enhance the space in your bathroom with open shelving and a glass shower enclosure. Add recessed lighting for a more relaxed atmosphere.
  • Build a breakfast bar: Include a breakfast bar in your kitchen. This incredible multitasker gets to work on busy mornings and shines during those elegant evening parties.
  • Clean the mudroom: Keep your mudroom tidy with the convenient storage of hooks and bins for those daily-use items, while cabinets hid everything else.
  • Chalk it up: Add a dramatic but playful element to a workspace with a chalkboard wall, and pair it with a mature color palette to dress it up.
  • Balance: Balance the functionality of your kitchen with decorative elements by adding a display case to house décor that complements your home.
  • Shelving: Enhance your fireplace and wall-mounted TV with built-in shelving, which also provides a stylish way to display sentimental pieces and add storage.
  • No shadows: For proper bathroom lighting, place wall sconces alongside the vanity mirror. This creates cross illumination, which eliminates those pesky shadows.
  • Repurpose: Get creative with small spaces and don’t be afraid to repurpose furniture. A dresser can provide crucial storage and blends in well in a living room.
  • Doesn’t have to match: Coordinate your décor but don’t feel that it has to match exactly. Use complementary colors and varying textures to add a designer’s touch to your room.
  • Pop it: Make a design statement in your kitchen by using different materials in key areas. An island finished in a different wood or paint color adds a stylistic pop.

Staging is all about highlighting your home’s strengths, downplaying its weaknesses and appealing to the greatest possible pool of prospective buyers. It can set you apart from your competition and lead to a quicker sale – often for more money. Staging has been a measured part of the Lisas’ success and we are eager to help.