You only get one chance to make a first impression, and your home is no different— especially when you are ready to sell. Remember,  the same people who walk through your abode have probably toured a few other homes, maybe even in the same day, and you want your home to stand out and say “I’m the one.”

Working with a real estate agent and staging your home to show its full potential can make the difference between a quick sell and waiting months for a decent offer, says Nicole Penalva of Bella Abode Design.

Staging is the act of making a home visually appealing to the largest number of potential buyers and its popularity continues to increase as sellers realize the impact it can have on the bottom line and number of days on the market. Often stagers use items you already have in your home. “When working with professional stylists, we try to use as much of the home owner’s belongings in restyling homes as possible,” says Kate Livingston of Restyled Spaces CLT.

In the “2017 Profile of Home Staging” report by the National Association of Realtors, 29 percent of sellers’ agents reported an increase of one to five percent of the dollar value offered by buyers in a staged home, compared to similar homes.

Is your home ready for the spring buying market? If you are asking yourself this question, it is time to call a Savvy + Co. Real Estate agent who can take you through the entire transaction and help you stage your home correctly.

What furniture should stay and what should go?

Before you swing the doors open to buyers, take a good look at your home and the furniture. While it makes perfect sense for a bed to be in the bedrooms or a table in the dining room, don’t let too many large pieces distract the buyer. But where to start? According to the aforementioned 2017 survey, buyers reported wanting to see the living room staged first followed by the master bedroom, kitchen and outdoor living spaces. Your real estate agent can help you determine the best place to start. Plus they know the neighborhood, the competition and what styles potential buyers are going to love!

Expert stager advice:  “The first impression is so important and that starts with curb appeal. Make sure you have trimmed all landscaping, freshly mulched, and make sure the front door has a fresh coat of paint.” – Nicole

How do I declutter?

We know you are a creative person with lots of important and treasured stuff, but buyers usually prefer to see less personal items around a home they are considering purchasing. Potential buyers want to imagine their No-Shave November trophy on the mantel and the kids art work in the hallway. If you can’t decide what stays and what goes, you aren’t alone. Ninety-three percent of agents recommend decluttering as the number one thing sellers should do to get a home ready to sell, according to the survey. Your Savvy + Co. Real Estate agent will help you determine what should be packed up, and what should stay.

Expert stager advice: “Declutter, declutter, declutter! A buyer wants to be able to picture their furniture and items in your home. This is hard to do if they are distracted by clutter.” – Nicole

What home improvements should I make first?

The answer to this question can make the difference between investing in home improvements that pay off and sinking your money into projects that won’t matter as much to the buyer. Your agent will help you make a list and can guide you on where to put your money for the biggest bang for your buck. Staging can make a huge difference even in those properties that suffer from less than perfectness. Almost a third of buyers said they are more willing to “overlook property faults” when a home is staged. Another way your agent can guide you down the path of getting to the closing table.

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Expert stager advice: “The goal is to style, but not to break the bank by purchasing new items which the homeowner may or may not use again. A professional stylist will refresh and modernize the home for listing.”  – Kate

Is my home Web ready?

When buyers are ready to make the “move”, they do what most any living, breathing human being does – they turn to the Internet. Your real estate agent wants your home to have as much online exposure as possible. A staged home typically photographs better and 40 percent of buyers reported they were more likely to walk through a home they saw online and/or via social media. Work with a stager to clean up your home and show its best side so those home surfers won’t be able to resist a walk through.

Expert stager advice: “Don’t be afraid to have a friend walk through your house once you thinks it’s ready. It’s good to get a new perspective from someone who doesn’t live in the house. They will see things that you have looked right over.” – Nicole

Do I have enough time?

The spring selling market has already sprung so if you are thinking of putting your home on the market, get hopping (pun intended) and give us a call. We will work with you to get your home market ready and create a timeline of tasks so when the buyers come to call both you and your beautiful home will be ready!

Want to know more? Our agents would be glad to meet with you to discuss the next steps in getting your home ready to sell. They can also schedule a walk through of your home and offer advice on what decorating and home repair projects would be most beneficial for your budget. And if you aren’t sure where to call your next home sweet home, they can help with that too.