If you are planning to mortgage a house in California, surely you are hoping to sell your current home as quickly as possible and get your asking price. Set the stage for success with these tips for styling and upgrading your home and see results.
Curb appeal is paramount
Many people do a quick drive-by first, often deciding if it is even worth a look inside. Make sure your home is ready to lure in onlookers with these tips:
- Power wash siding and walkways
- Hang easy-to-read house numbers
- Plant blooming flowers and fresh greenery
- Mow lawn, and reseed or add fresh sod as needed
- Wash front windows
- Repaint or stain the porch floor as needed
Welcome visitors with an inviting porch
Keep the door clean. Even if you have only a tiny stoop, make it say “welcome home” with a clean doormat and potted plants in bloom. Keep exterior lights on in the evenings or use solar lights in case of a late drive by or showing.
Get your house sparkling clean
From shining floors and gleaming windows to clean counters and scrubbed grout, every surface should sparkle. Clear away all clutter. Clean and clear surfaces, floors, cupboards and closets equal more space in the eyes of potential buyers, so purge anything unnecessary or unsightly. Give all floors a thorough cleaning and consider having bare floors repaired if they are in poor shape. If you can’t repair or replace, area rugs can go a long way to spruce up the room.
Strike a balance between clean and lived-in. Think vases of cut flowers, a basket of fresh produce on the kitchen counter or a bowl of lemons beside the sink. On the day of a showing bake a batch of cookies and lure potential buyers with the smell of homemade goodies.
A house full of tips
Here are even more ideas that can help you get every area of your home ready:
- Don’t neglect the dining room. Between dinners, a large dining table can look bare and uninviting, so styling it up with visitors in mind can increase the appeal. An oversize arrangement can look too stiff and formal, so try lining up a series of smaller items down the center of the table instead.
- Rearrange your furniture. In the living room, symmetrical arrangements usually work well. Pull your furniture off the walls and use pairs of chairs, lamps, etc., to create an inviting conversation area.
- Choose neutral colors for your walls. Rich neutrals like gray, mocha, and beige create a sophisticated backdrop that makes everything look more pulled together.
- Create a neutral master bedroom. Appeal to everyone with a clean, tailored master bedroom, free of personal items and clutter. You can’t go wrong with clean, crisp linens, tasteful artwork and a blanket folded at the foot of the bed.
- Closet space is a strong selling point for buyers, so show yours off to their full advantage by keeping them well organized and tidy. Aim to have 20 to 30 percent open space in each closet to give the impression of spaciousness.
- When people are house hunting, they are imagining a fresh start. Show them that in this house, it is possible to have a beautifully organized kids’ room.
- If you have been using a spare bedroom as a storeroom, it needs to be rearranged. Quickly turn it into an office or playroom for the kids.
- Try a pedestal sink to maximize space. If you have a small bathroom with a huge cabinet-style sink, consider swapping it out for a simple pedestal version. Your bathroom will appear instantly bigger.
- Place something that draws the eye at the top of the stairs, in hallways or in corners to pique curiosity and keep potential buyers interested throughout a whole home tour.
- If you have any room beneath the stairs—or a nook or alcove anywhere in your home—try to find a unique way to show it off. Make your awkward spot become another selling point.
- A lingering pet smell is a serious deterrent. If you have pets, get all rugs steam cleaned and be extra vigilant about vacuuming and washing surfaces.
- Make sure your garden is in beautiful shape year round. If you have any extra features like a pool or a fire pit, keep them cleaned and enticing to look at. Take advantage of the cozy vibe of the season in autumn and winter, by building a fire in the fireplace and simmering hot apple cider on the stove.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that staging isn’t creating illusions—it’s about revealing truths. You are simply showing the buyer the potential of the home through simple and inexpensive upgrades and décor.