7 Expert Staging & Sale Prep Tips for Home Sellers

By Home Bay

Posted on February 4th, 2016

Today, we’ve got a guest post from Michele, a certified International Staging & Redesign Expert and Founder of The Redesign Habit. Michele is going to share her design expertise to help you learn how to prep your listing for sale without blowing your budget. Enjoy!


I often get questions from sellers on how to prep their home for sale; what to focus on, what to fix and how to stay organized. Here are 7 tips to help you get your home show ready without having to invest a lot of money.

  1. Clean Everything:

    This may seem obvious (and probably is not your favorite thing to do). However, leaving things looking dingy or grungy can certainly turn potential buyers off. They may wonder what bigger things have been neglected if you couldn’t be bothered to clean up before showing your home. So make sure you clean everything from your oven to the grout in your shower – because people will look everywhere!

  2. Replace Items That Have Seen Better Days:

    Again, neglected items can leave potential buyers wondering about the overall condition of your home, so now is the time to do some quick fixes. Be sure all your light bulbs work, replace the broken handle on your cabinet door (finally!) and replace the washer on that leaky bathroom faucet. You should also make sure you have clean shower curtain liners and your bathroom towels are in good shape. Small things like this will impress potential buyers and will give your home a little visual lift that will cost you very little cash.

  3. Touch Up Your Paint:

    We all have scuff marks on our baseboards and scrape marks on our walls. It’s what happens naturally as we live in our homes. Now’s the time to get out your paintbrushes and touch up these areas.

    If you have a room with a bright or bold color scheme, you may want to paint it a more neutral color because some people have a really hard time visualizing something different than what they’re seeing. Buying a gallon of paint and repainting the space to prevent putting off a potential buyer is well worth the small investment of time and money.

  4. Wash Your Windows:

    It’s a pain but again it goes back to giving the best first impression of your home as you possibly can. Make sure and wash your windows inside and out. While you’re at it, launder the window treatments, wash the curtains, clean the blinds, clean window ledges, etc.

  5. Wash Throw Pillows, Blankets & Clean Throw Rugs & Carpets:

    You want your home to smell fresh and clean when someone walks in for the first time and all of these items hold odors. If you have pets or small kids, a blanket or pillow can really hold onto some not so pleasant smells. Invest in renting a carpet cleaner or make a run to a laundromat to use an oversize machine. Though a chore, it will be time and money well spent.

  6. Clear Away The Clutter:

    Good news, this one is free! Moving is a great time to sort through those piles of things in your spare room that you have been meaning to organize. Make piles to donate, pack or throw out. Then, get some boxes and start packing up what you don’t need to live day to day. Stack those packed boxes neatly in your garage or put them in a temporary storage unit.

    Remember you want your home to look as spacious as possible, so don’t forget to clear off the kitchen and bathroom counter tops. Store things neatly underneath and pack anything you won’t need in the short-term. Make sure your clutter is cleaned up so potential buyers notice the great features of your home, not the stacks of magazines piled in the corner of your living room.

  7. Depersonalize Your Home:

    Again no money here, just time. This task ties in with the decluttering, but in this case, you’re basically just packing away all your personal effects. Take down the family pictures and artwork that may be too taste-specific. Minimal neutral d?cor is best, and you basically want your home to look like a nice hotel room when it’s all said and done. Again, people can have a hard time imagining themselves in the space when all they see everywhere are your personal things.

Stay Organized:

I’ve moved multiple times over the years, and the best way I’ve been able to organize my sale prep process is to make a list. Walk through your home and be honest with yourself about what needs to be done and try and look at your home with fresh eyes. Then make note of the things that need to be cleaned, replaced and repaired.

Once you have your list, schedule time to tackle each task and check off each item as you complete it. Also be sure to make a separate list of things that need to be purchased and put it in your purse or car. That way you won’t get home and realize you forget three things you really needed.

Follow these seven tips and keep yourself organized to take the frustration out of the sale preparation process!

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Posted in Preparing to Sell Your Home, Home Staging