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How to Stage Your House to Sell Fast

When you look at as many real estate listings as we do, it quickly becomes obvious which houses have been staged for maximum buyer appeal and which have not. Obviously, this is somewhat dependent on price—a $20 million house should be more impressive than a $500,000 house—but no matter what your selling price, there are things nonprofessionals can do to make their house sparkle in their ad and showings.

Hamptons and California real estate agent Chad Hooper listed some staging tips on his blog. Some of them are the standard bits of advice, like "boost curb appeal," but others are more subtle. Let's take a look, including that first and oft-repeated point.

1. Boost curb appeal. Chad says, "Many people thinking of touring your home will do a quick drive-by first, often deciding on the spot if it is even worth a look inside." So make sure there are fresh, blooming flowers outside, the garden is trimmed and neat, and everything is in good repair and clean-looking. No dirty windows or unkempt lawns, please.

2. Get the interior spotless. Other people's dirt is just gross. Kitchens should be faultless, grout scrubbed, curtains washed, and so on.

3. Ditch the clutter. No one wants to see your collection of Precious Moments figurines. Put it away. Less is more. You don't want to distract buyers with your collections.

4. Style your dining room table. This is a great point. Chad says, "The dining room is often a blind spot in decorating the home. Between dinners, a large dining table can look bare and uninviting, so styling it up with visitors in mind can increase the appeal. An oversize arrangement can look too stiff and formal, so try lining up a series of smaller vessels down the center of the table instead."

5. Check your floors. Does the wood need refinishing? Is the carpet stained? If so, fix it.

6. Make the master bedroom genderless. "Appeal to everyone with a clean, tailored master bedroom, free of personal items and clutter." Chad makes another great point here. Sometimes single women girly their bedrooms up too much with pink and ruffles and flowers everywhere. That turns people off. Plainer and more neutral is better.
· Staging Tips For Selling Your Home This Fall (Part 1) [Bicoastal Luxury Homes]