Every real estate property can benefit from staging, no matter the size, whether it is a single-family home, a condo, and even if it is well maintained. The reason for staging is the same reason developers have been doing it for years, which is to receive higher offers and sell the property faster.
Staging gives a potential buyer the feeling of a lifestyle while providing a mood that buyers can emotionally respond to. That is why appealing to all five senses is so important. Once they identify with the home the higher the chance the potential buyer will place an offer.

According to Barb Schwarz, founder of Staged Homes,

when selling luxury homes or in a market with bidding wars over properties, effective staging can boost prices by 20 to 50 percent.

Let’s go back to the basics. Prior to listing your house with a Realtor and a Stager, it is important to identify the target audience. Identifying that audience is the golden rule of staging and the foundation for a successful staging. Most home interiors, even when professionally decorated fit a specific taste. But we must recognize that the way we live in our home is very different from a staged house which purpose is to appeal to buyers.
Once a homeowner decides to sell their home, they must detach emotionally, once that takes place in their mind, they will start seeing the house as a commodity, making it easier to stage the house to sell. Moreover, staging will help overcome the imperfections of the house. For example, I helped a client of one of my agents boost the curb appeal by working with his gardener spruce up the landscape. The before and after photos show how sprucing the front yard made a big difference to the house’s curb appeal. The appeal was as such that the agent had 4 offers on the first day of the Open House.

before aft lanta3

Staging typically involves things like:

  • Boost the house’s curb appeal to give buyers an exciting first impression and to make the property stand out from the rest of the other houses on the market.
  • Get rid of all clutter. Start by removing as much as possible from the kitchen’s counter-tops and then clean the kitchen appliances so that potential buyers can see how spacious the kitchen is.
  • Rearrange furniture within or between rooms to make rooms look larger and more inviting.
  • Outdoor lighting allows potential buyers to see the property at night and adds drama.
  • De-personalize the house by removing all family photos and memorabilia to off-site storage.
  • Rearrange art and accessorize to project the lifestyle you want your home to convey.
  • Styling book shelves, fireplace mantels and display cabinets
  • Consider color scheme and repairs needed. An idea is nice neutral khaki color.
  • Remove stains or bad odor in the home from pets, mildew, and smoke.
  • Use greenery to give the perfect cozy touch and make potential buyers feel at home.
  • Bake an apple pie or light candles.  I find that when showing a home, the smell of apple, vanilla, lemon, and chocolate evoke comfort.

Staging a house increases the ability of any potential buyer to mentally picture living in the home, while increasing the chances of getting the best possible offer.

Norka Parodi is a member of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing and is a Broker/Realtor®, with CDPE, CIAS, LMC, GRI, TRC designations

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