5 Home Staging Tips to Sell Your House Fast

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Marcella Ferguson

Subject: staging to sell

It has been interesting reading these comments, Stage / Don't Stage?
I am the type of person who can see beyond the clutter and bad decorating to the bones of the house, but not everyone can envision the possibilities. At the very least, unclutter and clean and clean some more..Un-jam your closets and remove as much "stuff "from your kitchen counters and bath counters as possible so that it does not appear that there is a lack of storage. Make sure that all light bulbs are functioning as well as the light switches.

If your house has unusual paint colors but the paint is in good shape, leaving it as is may be fine. If the paint, no matter the color, is dirty, chipping or otherwise unsightly, a fresh coat of paint may not be a bad idea. Otherwise, you might want to acknowledge the deficiency and include some sort of allowance for re-painting. This allowance might not cover the full cost of re-painting but gives the potential buyer some incentive to overlook the poor condition of the paint.

There are varying opinions on adding scents to the house. Some say that you don't want to appear to be trying to cover up a bad smell. I get that. At the same time, I think a pleasant scent in the house can give off a very positive vibe. Nothing to strong or distinctive. Maybe a little Fabreeze or a scented candle in the living area (not in every room). I lean toward natural fragrances such as apple or vanilla rather than anything too perfumy or sweet.

I have to admit that the lovely cinnamon / clove plug in air fresheners that were placed in my current home when it was for sale were quite seductive! That and the fact that the home was squeaky clean gave a very positive impression!

These are just my thoughts. I am sure that others will disagree.



Lucy Schultz

Subject: staging homes to sell?

I remember buying my home 24 years ago, It was an estate and I was a single woman age of 30 years old. I walked into this house and the carpet had been torn out and was filthy (it was an estate), as soon as I walked in the door I knew this was the house for me. My father said there is a lot of work to do and my comment was, yes but I can do it myself and it is a well built house. Obviously, this house was not staged and I immediately wanted it, because I could see the potential in it. People need to see the potential in the home, not how it looks now.

Shadow D

Subject: staging your home

I think a beautifully designed home sells itself.. but, the cookie cutter basic box sort of homes need something occasionally, especially if the buyer lacks the imagination of a box of rocks. I have always been able to create a beautiful home no matter where I live, but its due to an internal sense of color and balance and design. I have noticed though, that some people cannot put anything together to where its creates a feeling of home. They take pics of rooms for the realtor that are filled with clutter, boxes and clothes all over the floor...dirty dishes in the sink and on the counters in the kitchen, or towels hanging over the shower rod in the bath!... what on earth are they thinking? I've decided, they think everyone lives as pigs. So, staging at least on a minimal scale, can promote a feeling of what a home CAN be like, if only to give a sense of space , in the pics, so you can figure out the dimensions. Not only should a buyer figure that they will want to paint, its most likely, a given. I have seen some neon colors... and sometimes a dark color that only vampires would admire.. that requires lots of primer. You just shake your head and try to figure if its worth it. On the other hand, lots of nice details like crown molding in a tract home makes a big difference even if its style is the same as the next door neighbor's home. You make the style! Your furnishings and your accessories change each place into YOUR home. Art work and other details are important. Choose what makes YOU happy and relaxed. Its going to be your own castle.


Subject: Staging is Nonsense

Staging assumes that buyers a a bunch of idiots. Most homes in a neighborhood are based on similar plans, and buyers will compare the size, location and condition between comparable homes. A little clutter hardly matters.



This has always puzzled me why SELLERS re-model, re-decorate and upgrade their homes to sell (albeit, a thorough cleaning, decluttering and fix major problems is a must). In the end your home looks better and everything is working, so why leave now? Then there are BUYERS that buy a home only to re-model, re-decorate or even gut it out to make it 'theirs'? Why bother unless it is a true fixer upper. My advice: SELLERS: if you're moving because things are going wrong around the house; don't be deceitful and fix it and, BUYERS: make a list for your needs vs wants, your own inspections to do, have an open mind (a little paint goes a long way) and be willing to compromise. Also be sure to find a GREAT home inspector.

Caryl Kent

Subject: Staging and decorating your home.


Keep things simple but classy. Add colored pillows, etc to freshen up. Stain areas on wood areas scratched. Q-tips
Work well for small areas. Wipe excess with terry cloth rags.

I have many more but not great pay here! Lol


Subject: home staging

thank goodness my sellers didn't paint everything tan!! the kids' rooms were bright green and the other was pale blue---I would've never picked this green but its awesome! They left the living room a soft yellow and the master a "linen" white. almost perfect, all we painted upon moving in was the small dining room (it was white)


Subject: bull$hit to fraud

This shows that "real estate broker", "realtor", and any other bull they come up to lie about who they are, exist somewhere between used car dealers and child pornography dealers. Your home is described as one of or the most important purchase of life and here is an industry born from cheating, theft by collusion, and fraud. It isn't government that sucks the most in America, it's the worthless, slimy people.

Fran S.

Subject: Non-staged homes sell, too

The owner of the home I eventually had physically relocated, but her friends moved in to house sit until the home was sold. All parties involved had the house jammed with furniture, clothing. I still have a vivid memory of clothing that was drip drying in the laundry room. It was jammed! But I was seeing the skylight windows, the back yard woods, the open rooms and general feel of the home. I knew I was going to paint; I knew I'd be ripping up the carpet that had been soiled by a pet; I knew I'd be sprucing up the front door entry. I saw beyond all the things that the staging articles recommend. Conversely, I had seen a lot of staged homes and it meant nothing to me because it wasn't my taste. It was about the home.


Subject: Eliminate suspicion!

Cracks in walls, cracks in ceilings, cracks in foundation and basement walls, and doors that don't open/close smoothly, are MAJOR red flags that make buyers and property inspectors nervous. Invest in a quality fix for those items and put a fresh coat of paint on everything.


Subject: LOL

I have to laugh at these comments. I just bought a house and the agent had the home owner follow the above steps and repaint so that it was neutral, one thing not mentioned, but pushed hard. The previous owner had to remove all the energy saving bulbs so that brighter conventional bulbs could be used, she also had to paid the rooms to forms of tan. She also had to remove a myriad of built in shelves and other homey touches. It cost her a lot of money to get the house ready.

Granted, it sold, but the previous owner about died when she found out that we were planning on putting the house back with nearly the same colors as before. We also were going to add back the homey stuff that she had removed. Her agent cost both the seller and I a lot of money.


Subject: Live like you're selling.

These are great tips for how to live every day! Clean and declutter,
use light to brighten spaces, pare down for more living room, freshen the appeal and clear out closets. Add fruit and flowers and there you go, a beautiful place for YOU to live!

Dene Sharbono

Subject: staging

If you notice the large wall paintings. It draws your attention away from
room. Perhaps pictures 1/3 smaller would allow your eyes to look into
the room and appreciate how nice it is.

Lisa Schott

Subject: Perfect staging items

If you can only get to 5 items, these are the ones. As a professional home stager, you only get one first impression, don't blow it. A small investment in proper staging leads to a quicker sale and without having to continue to lower your price. At Arranged To Sell, we totally agree with this article.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had

I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.

I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.

That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.