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Staging Matters: Before and After

Lisa Loper of the Scott Loper Team shares staging ideas and before and after pictures of home staging jobs

Staging a house for sale comes in many shapes and forms.  But it is always about making your house more visually appealing to homebuyers – highlighting the positives and minimizing the negatives.  

While some staging jobs can cost thousands of dollars, many homes can get adequately staged for little or no cost.

But the payoff at sale can be huge.  Time and again, a well-staged home will typically sell faster and closer to list price than comparable homes that don’t show as well.

Here are some of the key elements of staging:

  • Simply de-clutter, clean and organize.  This is the singular most important step of any home staging project.  Even if it means packing up several boxes and putting them in storage (or in your in-law’s garage), every home needs a clean, streamlined look for showings.  And don’t just shove it all into a closet; a cluttered closet screams that the house doesn’t have enough storage.
  • Add accent pieces to add drama and visual appeal to a room.  Creative home stagers can use pictures and pieces from throughout a house (and the attic), recreating spaces to enhance their appeal.  Quality staging will also vary and regroup the wall hangings and accessories to balance a room.
  • Add light (and lots of it).  Every room should have lots of lights and definitely one on a switch.  Heavy drapes should be discarded.  Open up blinds and curtains to make rooms feel light and airy (wash the windows while you are there).  The simple replacement of an ordinary builder-grade light fixture with a modern fixture can do wonders.
  • Transform junked up multi-purpose rooms to a singular purpose which adds value.
  • Remove excess furniture.  Regroup remaining furniture to make rooms feel larger and flow better. 
  • Rent quality furnishings that replace older, out of date furniture or to fill vacant rooms.
  • Fresh paint and/or removal of wallpaper.  Use wise and trendy choices for paint color so rooms flow from one to the other and appear larger.  Wallpaper is a big turnoff these days.  And white walls are too sterile.  However, bright white, freshly painted trim against soft, warm, neutral walls can make a room pop and mask even outdated furniture. 
  • Add some color.  In some areas, a deep color provides the perfect contrast.  It may be paint on an accent wall but it could also be the bedding, throw rugs, pillows, towels, or curtains that provide the visual accent a room needs. 
  • Add some nature.  Home stagers love flowers, plants, wreaths, bowls of fruit, etc.  So whether they are fresh (from the yard even) or quality fakes, natural elements are especially welcome in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Make modest to mid-priced improvements.  Sometimes, it is worth every penny and more to replace an old countertop with granite, replace peeling linoleum flooring, or re-glaze an old pink tub.  Improvement projects that cost considerable money require a specially trained eye to ensure a seller will get the most bang for their staging buck.

A picture is worth a thousand words.  The gallery has a few pictures of staging pictures before and after. 

Every Wednesday at noon, the Scott Loper Team of Re/Max Realty Group in Harleysville offers some sage advice to potential and current homeowners in our area.  The Scott Loper Team includes Scott Loper, Lisa Loper and Gina Wherry, Re/Max Realty Group, 439 Main Street, Harleysville, PA 19438, 215-256-1200.

Michelle Young April 13, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Great tips! If you look up staging statistics, you can see examples of the return on investment when hiring a stager. Of the most recent two house we staged, one sold at the open house and the other sold OVER asking price in just three weeks. If you do not stage, you are only helping to sell the competition.

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