1. Visit model homes and examine shelter magazines for inexpensive decorating ideas. Always keep in mind you are not decorating for yourself but for the general public.
2. Start with the outside. Give the house a fresh coat of paint, add shiny hardware to the front door and plant a few flowers to send a subliminal message the house is loved and well cared for.
3. Declutter every room to make it look larger. Get rid of family pictures, trophies and knickknacks. Closets and drawers should be no more than 30% full.
4. Invest in eco-friendly but bright lights. Open the drapes or remove them completely. “Light, bright rooms give the impression this is a happy place—and everyone wants to move into a happy place.”
5. Feature only a few pieces of furniture with mainstream appeal. Pull pieces away from walls to make rooms look bigger.
6. Make sure a room’s primary use is obvious. A bedroom should look like a bedroom, not an office, hobby center or gym.
7. Bedrooms and kitchens are difficult to stage because they are in daily use, but make the effort. Clear everything off the counters and nightstands, roll up the rugs and hide the laundry hamper. Buff the cabinets with car wax and clean under the sinks. Invest in pristine white bed linens and towels.
8. Minimize the “pet effect.” Remove food bowls and litter boxes to the utility room. Deodorize thoroughly.
9. Organize the utility room and garage. Hang up the bicycles, roll up the hose. Renting a storage locker is worth the cost if it helps you sell faster and for a higher price.
10. Once your house is staged, invite your friends or Realtor over and walk them through to get an objective opinion.
~~Source RIS Media