Staging your home in a competitive real estate market gives you many advantages over those sellers that make little or no effort to prepare their homes for selling. A cluttered, dirty home with no obvious care or organization is unappealing to home buyers. In comparison, if you stage your home and declutter, clean, add some fresh paint and open up the rooms, your home will attract buyers. These simple and inexpensive tips for staging a home will help give you ideas and prepare your home to sell fast.

What is Home Staging?

Staging is all about making it look good to potential buyers. Buyers want a home that provides functionality, spaciousness, and has all the features they want. They're not interested in repainting, changing out all the carpeting or redoing all the landscaping. When properly staged, potential buyers can see themselves living in your home with minimal changes.

Home Staging Benefits

Staging a home for sale usually means it sells faster and you can get back to a normal routine without constant cleaning and worrying that something is out of place. Homes that have been properly staged usually sell quicker than those that haven't and often command higher selling prices. It's a good deal for sellers with just a little extra work. Financially, buying and selling a house at the same time is tricky at best. The quicker you get a contract on your old home, the better you'll feel.


In addition to the entryway, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms in the house because this is where families spend most of their time preparing food, visiting and sharing meals. Buyers are looking for a clean, comfortable, cheery kitchen with up-to-date cabinetry and appliances. A new coat of paint often does wonders. Replacing out-of-date hardware and adding additional lighting are two inexpensive ways to add new life into an older kitchen.

Family Rooms, Living Rooms and Bedrooms

Evaluate each room to determine if there is too much furniture or if it's worn and needs replacing. Now is also the right time to repaint with neutral colours, which are preferred by most homebuyers.

The best way to stage these rooms is to empty them of furniture. Bring the furniture back in one piece at a time until you are able to create a nice seating arrangement for conversations and relaxing. Each room should look inviting, yet still have a good traffic flow.


Not so surprisingly, two of the most important and inexpensive methods for staging revolve around clutter removal and deep cleaning. Photos, collectibles and general clutter should be removed from all rooms to prevent them from looking crowded and small. These things are distracting to homebuyers, who are concerned if their furniture will fit and if the appliances are in good working order. 

After all clutter has been removed, you're ready to get down to serious cleaning. Clean the walls, ceiling lights and fans, drapes, blinds and windows. Steam clean all the carpets, mop the floors and clean furniture upholstery if needed. Every room should be cleaned from top to bottom to provide the best presentation possible.


Often, people who put their homes up for sale totally forget about the outside and landscaping. The first glimpse of your home that buyers see is the front exterior, yard and entryway. It's critical that the exterior and landscaping is perfect to create a good impression. Often, what home buyers see on the outside determines whether or not they will even come inside to see the rest of the home. 

Examine the outside and make sure it doesn't need painting. It's also smart to power wash the exterior to remove dirt and debris. Remember to wash the windows till they sparkle. Get the landscaping into tip-top shape. This means trimming trees, weeding flower gardens and lawns. Applying a bit of lawn fertilizer helps to make it green up nicely. Make sure to mow regularly for a well-groomed look. It's also important to make the entranceway into the house as clean as possible, cheery and welcoming. Spend a few dollars on potted flowers to put at the entrance or place a beautiful wreath on the door.

Additional Tips

Along with all of these staging tips, we've got a few more easy ones that you can try as well!

  • Replace dishtowels, bath towels, drapes and worn out comforters with new pieces to give the house a clean and fresh look.
  • Consider taking extra furniture and clothes to a rental storage unit to open up rooms and make them look larger.
  • Resist the temptation to stuff closets to overflowing. Make sure closets look roomy and functional.
  • Place house plants in a few rooms to add a bit of charm and consider a flower arrangement for dining/kitchen tables. 

You'll know your staging efforts have paid off, when you see the smile on the buyer's face and can tell they’re eager to move into their new home as soon as possible! 

Photo credit: living room, bedroom, kitchen
Posted by Chris Penny on


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