Clean, declutter and depersonalize with this printable Home Staging Checklist PDF. Follow these Home Staging Ideas, Tips and Hacks to cheaply improve home value, make a space warm and inviting, and welcome buyers providing a space they love and want to live!
Home Staging Checklist
So… we did it! In five years, we moved four times. You might think we are a military family, but we aren’t. You might think we are crazy, well we are! Our first move was from Florida to Virginia. Our next three moves took place in Virginia. The process was very different in each state. While the process of changing utilities, closing accounts, and hiring movers was the same, I found the home staging process to actually be far from the same.
We (currently) live outside the District of Columbia where land value is very high. Not only is the cost of land quite extreme, the market moves very quickly. Because of this, many people do not stage their home. We learned this having searched for homes well over a (combined) year. Having come from Florida, I decided to treat my Virginia Home Staging ideas just like I had in Florida. With this mindset, my husband and I made generously over five figures on our last house in just 3 years time.
Home Staging Printable and Tips
—> Get your Home Staging Checklist PDF or read Home Staging Tips & Ideas below.
What do I need for home staging?
The first thing you need before selling your home is a friend (or a realtor.) Someone needs to walk through your home with a second set of eyes. It’s easy to get offended with changes in your home decor, but don’t take it personally. Take it as if a buyer was walking through your home and trying to envision themselves living there.
Second, get ready to declutter and depersonalize. Consider renting a storage unit and adding additional clutter or asking a friend to store some things in an extra room they might have. Another idea is to go ahead and start packing and rent a POD to store your personal effects until you move. We found this a great solution for staging and also for moving many of our personal items.
For traditional home staging, consider the following items…
- Vase of flowers – Flowers are warm, bring positive emotions, and can add color to a space or room.
- Mirrors – These can replace family prints, open up smaller spaces, and bring light to a room.
- Bowl of fresh fruit – Fruit allows visitors a healthy bite, also bring organic element to the home.
- Pillows – Pillows bring a pop of color and life to a master bed or worn living room couch.
- Throw blanket – Blankets will bring a place of warmth and intimacy. They invite a buyer to feel cozy and at home.
- Indoor plants – Faux is fine. Add to places you want to stand out ad they attract buyers eyes.
- Lights – Add dimmers or grab some cheap lamps at second hand stores to brighten a room. Turn on all lights before you leave for a showing.
- Flameless candles – Candles add a glow and make a place feel warm.
- Curtains or drapes – Get rid of unsightly blinds and window treatments and add long drapes which can bring height to a room and space.
- Baskets – Baskets are perfect for holding pillows, rolled blankets and/or bathroom towels.
What is soft staging?
If a home is empty, you can consider hiring professional stages. Another option is to save money and soft stage. What is soft staging? Soft staging a empty house is a technique that does not require furniture but uses simple decor pieces and accessories like framed art, rugs, smaller chairs, mirrors, vases, and more. This process can be more cost effective and can be used in home staging for a quick sale.
Some want to know if it better to stage a house or leave it empty? The answer is it can depend. Sometimes with soft staging it can be hard for a buyer to picture themselves inside the home. Other times, it offers a buyer a blank slate and they can envision their own furniture and home decor. If leaving a home empty, ask your realtor about virtual home staging solutions for home photos on MLS listings and real estate apps like Redfin and Zillow.
What brings down property value?
If your a mom of five (like me) this was one question that I wanted answered – does a messy house affect an appraisal? There answer is no. The cleanliness of a home has no impact on the value. This means if your home appraiser is coming over, it is kind to pick up the toys off the playroom floor, but it doesn’t affect the home value he/she puts on the appraisal. However, if your clutter (think hoarders) affects the structural condition of your home, your home appraisal value can decrease. Make sure to make those home improvements before an appraiser comes or be ready to get dinged in your home appraisal and home inspection report.
Many things that affect the property value of your home are out of your control. Examples include proximity to train tracks, power lines, busy roads, noise pollution, the neighborhood, the market, and a home’s usual upgrades. If your home has some of the things that bring property value down, it is important for you to create a space a buyer “has to have!”
What adds most value to a house?
Want to know something funny? I am the frugal blogger but my husband is actually better than me at improving the cost of our home. Especially when it came to decluttering, landscaping, painting, and updating kitchen appliances.
A few things I learned that improve the value of your home. First, we invested in having the lawn cleaned up. We did this before photos. I also painted the front door. Actually, it was solid wood so I just used this UV Wood Polish (see photo below – top done, bottom not finished.) It made the home look a million times better. These two things brought instant curb appeal and positive first impressions.
Next, we knew we would be moving soon, so when our dishwasher broke we actually replaced all of our kitchen appliances so they were matching. You can sell your old working appliances on Facebook marketplace and make a few dollars back. We had these appliances under warranty so that was an added bonus when listing the home. How did we find these pieces for less? We asked our real estate agents who they used for appliances when flipping homes. We used the same services. Another idea is to check with Home Depot for Kitchen Appliances Packages.
We took a week to repaint our kitchen cabinets and brighten up the kitchen. Since we did this about five months before we moved, we spent one late night touching up small nicks and scratches before home photos and putting the home on the market.
Another thing, it’s often suggested to repaint the home with neutral colors. Only repaint rooms where paint colors are very extreme (i.e. bright red or hot pink.) We actually used Mr. Clean Dry Erasers to wipe down the walls of smudges and scratches. Where Mr. Clean did not improve the wall, we used a very small paint brush to fix dings and nicks.
If your budget allows for bigger home improvement projects, take a look at this list of the best ways to add value to your home.
Best Ways to Add Value to Your Home
This list will have a home staging cost in the thousands, but will bring a bigger return.
- Finish an unfinished basement or cellar
- Apply for planning permission (additions,
- Remodel the kitchen
- Bathroom addition
- Add a deck
- Open the living space
- Exterior home makeover and refresh
- Replacing carpeting
Are these large home improvement projects too expensive? That is okay. There are many low cost home staging options too!
How do I prepare my house for sale checklist?
Why are you here? You want to sell your home for more while spending less. I can help. I have done it. I have done it effectively. I have done it again (with five kids.) If you too want to make profit on your home sale, you will this useful access guide to home staging.
Download your preparing your home for sale checklist PDF. Use it as your cheap home staging resource before you have home staging photos taken or put your home is placed on MLS listing. Just a few simple low cost home improvements can look like “a million bucks!” Watch the value of your home improve, perhaps sell over asking like we did!
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If you are moving, pick up both our Home Staging Checklist PDF and Moving Binder printables. On the product item page, look for a special coupon code you can use on both products when added to your cart!
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Our Pinterest community and I would love to see how this worked out for you. Share your final home staging before and after photos. We love to see beautiful homes that are perfectly ready to sell from this checklist! Leave a comment and/or add a photo here on Pinterest!
Having looked at houses weekly for 9 months, we walked into many older homes. Follow some of the Older Home Improvement Hacks and DIY Renovations for Less. Pin to Pinterest.
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Last Updated on August 23, 2020 by Ashley at Frugal Coupon Living