Finding a home is much like dating - you know when you've encountered the right one based on the first impression.  The same is often true in home buying. You want to make a good first impression on potential buyers. This is where home staging comes in. Home staging can mean the difference between a quick sale or 'match', and remaining 'on the market' for an extended period of time.

Currently, the real estate market is a seller's market; inventory is low and there are a rush of home buyers trying to find 'the one'. In many markets, buyers are bidding over a home's asking price if it makes a great first impression.

Below are some home staging tips to help you market and sell your home quickly and for top dollar.

1. Remove the clutter.

Buyers cannot see past the catch all basket on the kitchen table, or the unorganized sports equipment in the garage. De-clutter so your home has a clean and organized appearance. Clutter also leads many buyers to question the amount of storage in a home. If you couldn't find a place to put it, will they?

2. Organize closets, cabinets, and clean hidden messes.

Just when you think people are not looking, they are. Clean out closets and cabinets to show off storage. Give your home a good deep cleaning - especially areas like your refrigerator and oven. Also keep all bathroom showers, tubs, laundry rooms and other behind the curtain areas clean and presentable. Trust me, buyers are looking.

3. Neutralize by putting away personal items.

Yes, the family photos are adorable, but you want to market your home to the masses. Items such as personal photos and trinkets distract buyers from imagining their own family in the home. So put them away; no worries there will be plenty of space for that in your new home. The same also goes for neutralizing spaces like a kids room, recreation room, or home office.

4. Renew your home decor.

Add a pop of color to the sofa with new pillows, and freshen a bedroom with new bed linens. This doesn't require tons of money, just creativity. Visit consignment shops to find unique items that will help freshen up a space, or consider renting furniture for a short period of time. To really save money, focus your efforts to a few rooms and specific focal points - perhaps the living room and its fire place, or the master bedroom and its unique reading nook. Decide which rooms really need to pop and concentrate adding new decor there.

5. Take professional photos.

Don't let all of your hard work go to waste with average photos. Ask your Realtor to hire a professional photographer to help market your home. Most home buyers visit online marketing sites like Zillow and Realtor.com for their home search. Buyers also see new homes marketed on social media sites like Instagram and Facebook. So go for professional, high resolution photos so your home shows well online.

 

Followed these tips? Tag @coffeamag on Instagram and Twitter and let us know how home staging made a difference in the sale of your home!

Tifinie Capehart is a Realtor with SilverPointe Properties in Brentwood, TN and is also an Urban Planner, writer and speaker. Learn more at CitySpeakonline.net.

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Authortifinie capehart