Your house is on the market for months, you might be struggling to get the right buyer that would see the potential of your home.
Obviously, hiring a stager that will bring in some beautiful furniture and accessories appropriate to the space & style you want to generate, to attract the most people, would be ideal. However, some people cannot afford investing that extra money, because of multiple reasons.
If that's the case for you, see below 10 tips to help you to put all the chances on your side.
" The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers, thereby selling a property more swiftly and for more money or at least at it's real value and not for less."
A vacant house looks sad and desperate. Buyers will imagine a nasty divorce or financial trouble and wonder how low an offer they can make.
What you should consider doing=
1 - Work on a clear plan. Study your neighbourhood, what's the demographic and define who is your ideal buyer :
Is it retired people, young single, families..
Are there schools, restaurants, public transit close by? Is it a perfect house for a first buyer?
2 - Target buyer's stage in life: Retired people vs newly married couples, the needs will be different.
Someone with time for hobbies may be looking for different features.
Is it someone that would likely throw dinner parties and/or huge BBQ parties?
3 - When homebuyers are house hunting, beforehand they created a list of criteria based on requirements and what they'd wish to get. Despite their list of wishes, most of the time their purchase is influenced by emotions.
Work on a list of factors of your house & the area (sq. ft, number of bedrooms, quiet area, age of the house, newly renovated, great schools around etc) that would influence the target buyer and see how you could help the buyer to make an emotional connection with your home.
Pushing them indirectly to make an offer!
4 - Once you have a clear picture of who would buy your house, then it will be easier for you to know how to utilize each room and create an ambiance. Maybe that spare bedroom can be turned into a nursery. That little corner can be used as a quiet spot to read a book and relax...
What I see and hear often =
Don't forget that buyers will see all the little things that maybe don't worth putting the time to make good or perfect to you.
"OH that's something they can do when they'll move in!"
You've been living for years with that little hole in the wall, the trim board needs a little touch up ... It didn't bother you, but it doesn't mean it wouldn't annoy someone else!
It's all about details!
Avoid adding more things to do and to fix to that potential buyer!
Just do those small repairs (and yet necessary) so people don't feel like there's more work to do. Most of people want to get a turn key property, with no or minimum hassle. Of course they might change the wall paint and other details to make it more to their style and liking, but it doesn't mean they'd do it right away!
5 - Fix all the "little & bigger" things (that you could do on your own / inexpensive = determine by your budget). Make it nice Visually !!
6 - Go through the items you have that would suit "Your NEW Design PLAN" and set it aside. Declutter the space, closets & pantry. If you need to store boxes, check with a friend, sibling etc .. if someone would have a bit of space to spare for your belongings.
7 - Remove pictures of the walls (family/ yourself / diplomas) and superfluous (including too many plants). We want something clean and clear, to help future buyers to imagine your house as their home.
Replace these empty spots with art instead. (Avoid religious pieces, nudes and anything else that could be offensive to prospective buyers.)
Make sure to use pieces appropriate to the size of the wall, and hang your art at eye level.
8 - As my husband (electrician) would say: Lighting Counts !
Light is very important. You will always feel better somewhere well lit than dark.
A dark space would give the impression you're trying to hide something / imperfections. I would recommend you to use higher watt bulbs.
And if you feel like you want to update the fixtures, keep them consistent with your home’s price point! Don't buy a very expensive - extravagant chandelier in a house that would cost $250,000.00 / same thing= don't get a $100.00 simple light fixture in a $850,000.00 house.
Also, I would suggest to keep the drapes & blinds open for showings.
9 - Make A Good First Impression.
"The thing with the First impression is that you only have one shot!"
Increase your chances and add some extra care to the outdoor / entrance. (Plants/ clean up/ update the door colour / planters / a nice wreath hanging on your door)
A little landscaping can go a long way. A beautiful curb-appeal will make people want to see more.
10 - Try various layouts of the furniture. Something new and different; sometimes we are stuck with what we know already.
Clean EVERYTHING= The kitchen, bathroom (redo the bathtub joints, scrub grout lines in the shower), carpet, wipe your window blinds, and wash the concrete floor in your garage. Let no detail go unnoticed!
Make your house welcoming. Bring in some fresh air. Display a nice bouquet of fresh flowers on the kitchen island or coffee table just before your showings.
I assist my good friend's friend, that moved out and needed to sell her hour asap. The house was empty and on sale for over 3 months. She didn't have a budget to rent furniture or hire a stager, she clearly needed help. There was some work to do (that she could do herself) and bigger projects that the future buyer has to finish up.
After going through the listing and all the details of her property; we worked on a plan to assist her to the best to sell it without anymore struggling, headaches and sleep deprivation.
"Furniture and accessories can be borrowed to create the right environment to romance buyers."
It's ok not having too many furniture & accessories on hand or good enough for that new design you're trying to set up.
Most of the time asking to friends and family if they would have a few things they don't use / don't have the need (collecting dust) is a WIN !
Explain your vision, let them go through what they have that you could use and go collect it. And who knows, some of them might even give you a little help :)
My friend and I gathered a maximum of things that would work together. Meanwhile, she painted / touch up a few things here and there. Removed nails in the walls and the skate board shelves. Glued back some little things. (Less things to do for the potential buyer that can be easily handled by the actual owner).
After a few trips to her house and arranging furniture & décor (fitting the space); she was able to sell her house 3 weeks later, to the right price!