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How To Stage Your Home For Fast Sale

Updated on September 19, 2013

Poorly staged home

Is It Time To Sell Your Home?

The time has come to put your home on the market, hopefully for a quick sell. You do the necessary repairs, you find yourself a real estate agent you can work with and you sign the contract and you are ready to sell, right?

Not so fast! In case you haven’t noticed there are quite a few homes on the market right now and not all of them are selling quickly. These are down times for sellers in this market and many homes are sitting on the market for months without even entertaining an offer. With so many homes available for sale don’t you think it would be wise to do everything you can to make your home presentable?

Staging is one of those ways to make your home stand out in a crowded real estate market. Think in terms of what you do when you are searching for a job and you get your first job interview. You clean yourself up, put on your best “success” clothes, get a haircut, brush your teeth….in other words, you are staging yourself. Never underestimate the importance of appearance in selling a home. Just because all the repairs have been made does not mean your home is going to sell. Your home may even be priced for a quick sale and yet it will sit for months without serious offers. What you need to do….what you must do….is make your home stand out in the crowd, and staging is how you do that.

There are professional staging companies who will handle all of this for you. However, some homeowners prefer to do it themselves and for those of you who are willing to put in the time and effort this article is for you.


Staging the Outside: Have a good friend go outside with you; go stand on the curb and take a look at your home and property. Now, put yourself into the shoes of a prospective buyer. What do you see? If you were buying this house what do you see that turns you off? Is the paint chipped and peeling? Is the lawn unmowed and are the flowerbeds in need of weeding? Are the leaves spread all over the yard? Do the bushes need trimming? All of these things count when it comes to first impressions by buyers. If your home is not welcoming at first glance you may have lost a buyer before they ever walk into your home.

Staging the Porch and Entryway: Again, first impressions count! Clutter is your enemy, as are spider webs and toys left unattended. Spruce this area up because you want the prospective buyers to really want to enter that home.


Good tips

Warm and inviting
Warm and inviting | Source

Staging Livingroom and Family Room: If the house doesn’t feel warm and inviting then forget about trying to sell it. Buyers want warm fuzzies when they are in a house because they are envisioning their family in that house. Good vibes? Bad vibes? Warm colors are nice; get rid of clutter; get rid of knick knacks; start a fire in the fireplace; put pleasing scents in the house; candles are great; worn furniture needs to be removed.

Staging the Kitchen: One of the most important rooms in the house to buyers is the kitchen. Make it sparkle! Get rid of clutter; open curtains and polish chrome and stain cabinets and upgrade knobs and handles if the ones you currently have look worn. Set the table and add flowers! Buyers will envision themselves preparing meals and eating in there so it had better look inviting.


How does your home look from the curb?
How does your home look from the curb? | Source

Staging the Bathroom: This is a deal-breaker so get on it! There is nothing worse than a bathroom that leaves you feeling gross. Scrub, scrub and then scrub some more. New shower curtains are a must, as is an attack on mold and stains and rust and whatever else would turn off a buyer.

Staging the Bedrooms: Comfort, comfort and more comfort. There should be lots of warm fuzzies in the bedroom. The beds should look inviting and plush and warm and capable of taking away stress. Limit furniture if possible so the bedrooms look larger. Paint walls a soft color; bedrooms are for relaxing in and not for being attacked by loud colors. Clean out those closets by limiting the clothes in them; organize the hanging clothes in the closet and get rid of knick knacks on the counters.


Have you used any of these techniques before?

See results

The Bottom Line

Here is the bottom line about staging: Once you and your friends take a look at your house, playing the part of a buyer, and once you have made an honest appraisal of what it will take to make the home attractive, you will have taken a large step towards selling your home. Remember, the competition is stiff out there and you are your home’s greatest advocate.

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    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh Zulma, unleash, my friend! Go for it big time. :) It's sure nice having all these visits. Thank you!

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      Are you actually encouraging me to unleash?! Cool. Most people encourage me to hold back. And I just can't do that. lol

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, you are floating in talent. You just have to unleash it, and when you do, I'll be able to tell people that I knew you when you were just a commoner like the rest of us. :)

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      Of course I went back. And it gives me hope. To me you are the superstar of HP. And to know that you started out like many of us, unsure, undecided and, perhaps. a bit fearful, well...if you can do it, so can I. :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Zulma, I can't believe you went back and read this. LOL Too funny! Thank you for your kind words. Have I enjoyed it? Oh my yes, and I'm still enjoying it, and I will continue to do so.

      Happy Monday my friend.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      So this is your first article? It's not a bad one, Bill. I can hear your voice whispering here. And I see the tentative first steps of someone who is not sure who he is yet.

      My, my you have come a long way. It's been quite a journey. Have you enjoyed it?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kathryn, I had the feeling that you would rush over to take a look at this. You are too kind; it really is bad. LOL Thank you for who you are, a kind, caring, supportive neighbor.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      Okay, now that you gave me the title to your first hub, I found it! Hahaha. Well, some of your tips were useful, but it definitely isn't like what I'm used to seeing from you! The layout alone is like many "first hubs" I have seen.

      It is cool that you left it up, though. It shows how far you have come along! And even though it is a little short on substance, staging a house really is important! I love the tv shows that show how to stage a place, and how much faster it is sold once it is done.

      I'm glad you write on HubPages!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jenn, how did you ever find this one? This was my very first hub and I'm not terribly proud of it. :) Thank you my friend.

    • Jenn-Anne profile image

      Jenn-Anne 5 years ago

      Lots of great info and some really good points here. When we sold our house the realtor strongly recommended that we bring in someone to help us stage it - and what a huge difference it made! It sold in just over a month - I was shocked. Voting up!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are welcome Janine!

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Well right back at you Bill and thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are welcome Janine! Note: I only reach out and support quality people! :)

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, I truly love reading your articles, because I always feel like I learn just a bit more about you in every article you do write and share. That said I do consider you a true friend as well and was more than happy to read. I have been trying to play catch up a bit since we went away so that is what I keep trying to do a bit more each day. Thanks again for all you do for all of us on Hubpages, it is very much appreciated my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, you just passed the true friend test. Anyone who reads three of my hugs in one day, one of which is this mediocre piece of writing, is a true friend. :) Thank you my dear, and back in the days when I had a tv, I used to watch those shows too.

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, I finally got a minute to take a look at your first and happy I did. Totally agree about staging a home to want to be able to sell it. I confess and watch all of those shows on HGTV and love seeing all the homes on the market that people go to see to potentially buy. That said the houses that are the most inviting at those that are properly staged. Even though this ws your first, I do think it was well written and very good information. Voted up and shared too!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Crystal; I'll find you on Facebook and we will become better friends!

    • mythicalstorm273 profile image

      mythicalstorm273 5 years ago

      My facebook name is Crystal Lannoye. I didn't think it was that bad. Maybe not up to par with the other stuff of yours that I have read, but it was still fairly informational and like I said this topic interests me as it is! And yes I agree that renting is better which is why I am still renting instead of buying my own house. It isn't that I don't plan on living there for long, I just plan on building my own house someday so I know I won't be living there for more than 5 years. Probably anyways.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mythical, today's real estate market is a crap shoot at best. If you don't plan on living in a home for long then you are probably much better off renting. Thank you for reading this; it really is not very good but I do appreciate you taking the time. What is your Facebook name? That's the only reason you would have seen this.....on Hoppers?

    • mythicalstorm273 profile image

      mythicalstorm273 5 years ago

      I used to love watching this show where they staged the house for the seller and then taped the reviews. I can't remember what it was called and I usually put it on while I was doing other things, but I found it so interesting to see how just doing a little effort to make the place look warm and inviting would get completely different reviews and would actually look very different as well! It also gave ideas on how to decorate your own home and utilize the ideas behind staging to keep your home warm and inviting even without the intent of selling. I found this very useful. I am afraid to buy a house because I know that I do not plan on living there forever and am very afraid of the selling part. This really is a great reminder that it is possible!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pink, you are very welcome! You stumbled upon the very first hub I wrote here at HubPages! Thanks for breathing some life back into it. :)

    • Pinkchic18 profile image

      Sarah Carlsley 5 years ago from Minnesota

      Great tips here! Staging is so easy for some people, but for me I just can never manage it. Thanks for the help!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, thanks Vicki! I look at it and laugh but hey, we all have to start somewhere.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I heard this was your first hub. Hey, it's a very interesting and important hub! And you're still here. Way to go! I gave you a bunch of votes! :-)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Natasha, I still laugh when I see this hub, which was my first. I hardly recognize my writing voice in this. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 5 years ago from Hawaii

      Not that I'm buying or selling a home, but I totally agree! About a year and a half ago I was looking at houses, though ended up not getting anything, and was pretty unimpressed by how poorly staged many of them were. Hopefully someone takes heed and fixes up their house because of your article"

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Audra, this was the first hub I wrote; I look back at it and laugh because it is so generic, so unlike anything else I have written. Thank you for taking the time to read this; you might be like number twenty to have read it. :)

    • profile image

      iamaudraleigh 5 years ago

      It is really interesting to see what your friends wrote in their star on hub pages. I love watching home shows. This piece attracted me! It was very well written about staging a home for sale. Voted up and shared!

    • Deborah-Diane profile image

      Deborah-Diane 5 years ago from Orange County, California

      Staging is such an important part of selling a home. Many people do not realize that buyers have trouble imagining what a house could look like, unless the seller goes to the trouble to create the right setting.