1. Consider the scale as well as the amount of furnishings you currently possess. Take a picture of your living room. Is the overstuffed, comfy, 5-piece sectional the first thing you notice? Do you think the Buyer will overlook how it resembles Clifford the big red dog? They won’t get past how much valuable square footage is eaten up by this elephant in the room. You can remove/store it and replace with furniture that is the correct scale. Or, split it up at the corner and use a section to create a loveseat. It’s okay if there’s one arm or none. Pop color with an accent pillow on the end.
2. Use tables that have very little visual weight. Think translucent and reflective. Glass, lucite, metal and mirrors are surfaces that enable the eye to see through or to see light as it bounces around the room. Mercury glass lamps are brilliant for this purpose.
- Bella Mancini Design
3. Hang window treatments high. If privacy isn’t an issue and inadequate sunlight is, remove them altogether - especially if you’re lucky enough to have millwork. Buyers love a trimmed out window. This detail equates to a more custom, thus better quality home. If, however, privacy is a concern, or you’d like to showcase a beautiful view, here are some good options.
Lightweight panels hung to the ceiling create the appearance of more height (more space). An airy, open weave, like linen, will diffuse light unlike heavy, lined draperies which obstruct sunlight. Remove valances or swags. Keep it simple.
Another great alternative are woven shades. They create texture and architectural interest to windows that may be a tad dated.
4. Replace old dingy, stained carpet. If you find hardwoods underneath, it’s a no-brainer to refinish. If you can’t make this investment, consider ripping out the shag and replacing with a carpet remnant or a sea grass rug, both economical and visually fresh.
- Vanessa de Vargas Design
5. Last, but never least, paint. Before spending $40/gallon consult a professional home stager. Warm, creamy neutrals are typically the go-to, but should they be yellow-based or gray-based? How much daylight does your room actually get. Is it north-facing? Does it feel cool in the morning? Would Buyers feel too warm in the afternoon? Is there tile on the floor or your fireplace surround? Should you paint the ceiling the same color? Many variables determine which hue is best for your room. Don’t wait until you’ve made your third trip to the paint store to ask for help.
5 design secrets from a home stager to help you create an airy, spacious living room that Buyers will love.