Staging a home to sell while living in it can feel exhausting; you want it to look nice for buyers that might pop by at any time, but you also don’t want to feel like you live in a museum where you can’t touch anything! There are a few things you can do to keep your home ready to show so it will sell fast while ensuring it’s still livable. Think of home staging as an opportunity to declutter, get rid of old and unwanted belongings, and get a head start on packing. Be aware that prospective buyers will look everywhere, including in any built-in custom carpentry cupboards and shelves, pantries, and other areas you might think are off-limits.
When you know you’re getting ready to move, start with a merciless winnowing of your possessions. Get rid of outdated, ugly furniture, garments you’re not wearing, knick-knacks you don’t really want to take with you, and other clutter. If you’re afraid to take the plunge, have some friends come over and help. Don’t store everything you plan to get rid of in the garage or a spare room: GET RID OF IT! Take it to a thrift store, dump, or other appropriate new home.
With more space cleared in your home, you can start thinking about how to stage it. Potential buyers want to imagine themselves in your home, so you want to keep the décor neutral, without a lot of personal touches. At the same time, you don’t want it so sterile that you feel uncomfortable, or that they have trouble imagining anything at all in the space. The first step is to make sure your home feels light and open, because buyers put a premium on natural light.
If you haven’t already painted in preparation, do so, and choose light, neutral colors that will be easy to paint over if necessary. To choose the right color, you could consult with an interior designer, or you could discuss it with your painting contractor. Many profesisonal painters, like AAA Painters, a Phoenix painting contractor, offer color consultation services. Remove blinds and heavy curtains and consider investing in sheers and other lightweight window treatments, or leave windows uncovered if doing so won’t compromise privacy.
Make sure you have a few neutral items of furniture in your home; this is a good time to put dramatic statement pieces away unless they make fantastic accents in a room. Float furnishings away from the wall to create more space and dynamism, rather than shoving them against the walls, which can actually make rooms feel more crowded.
When it comes to accent decor, consider using interesting art papers to line open bookshelves and cupboards. They add a quiet note of flavor to a room without being overwhelming. Choose a few neutral, but interesting, pieces of art to hang, and offset them at different heights to draw attention to all the display possibilities. Also add mirrors; they add light, make rooms feel larger, and keep the space more interesting.