Home staging (or property styling as it's commonly known as on the Australian property scene) is really an art, not a science. One of the many things a professional home stager understands is that it's the house that's up for sale, not the home owner's bread baking ability or taste in music. So, from the sublime to the rediculous - here's 8 myths of staging to sell - busted!
1. Buyers can see past my stuff
No - they can't. 95% of house hunters shop with a 'what you see is what you get' eye. You'll be maximising your chances of a better and quicker sale if you take the time to clean out, clean up and keep your look simple.
2. Baking bread, brewing fresh coffee and playing soft music will make a buyer fall in love with my house.
Maybe once upon a time this was true - but most would-be buyers are onto that old trick. It's more likely to trigger alarm bells, with many wondering what it is you're trying to hide. Your buyers will be happy with a place that looks and smells clean.
3. I'll need to clear everything out to help buyers see themselves living here.
This is only partly true. Wall to wall family photos are distracting, as is your porcelain rooster collection. These things are best put away. But don't go overboard, otherwise you'll end up with a look that feels cold and sterile.
4. If it's an original feature - it adds value.
Sometimes yes - but often no. Generally a property built less than 50 years ago without being updated is more likely to appear dated, rather than classic.
5. My place isn't worth staging.
All homes are worth taking the time to present in a positive light to buyers. The trick to knowing where to start and what to do is in having a good idea of what buyers in your target market will expect, along with learning more about what competing properties in your area are offering.
6. Empty rooms look bigger.
This is rarely the case. Buyers will always prefer to see how a room is used and what will fit in it, rather than be left to guess. Very large rooms can also be too intimidating for some. Even borrowed furniture can help buyers get an idea of scale and give the eye something of interest to focus on.
7. Converting a bedroom into a home gym won't be a problem.
Bedrooms are one of the most valuable commodities of the 'for sale' property. Having a home gym set up in a bedroom will prompt buyers to wonder why that is. I remember once looking at a house where this was the case. When I came across the bedroom with the gym in it, I immediately began to question if a bed would even fit. Always give the rooms in your house a purpose.
8. No need to worry about wardrobes and cupboards.
Home storage is a big deal to most buyers and is surprisingly valuable. Prospective buyers will open storage cupboards in kitchens and bathrooms, so keep them tidy. Keep only what you're using on a daily or weekly basis, and pack the rest away ready for the move.
Have you got a staging myth you'd like busted? Share them with me here.