Our Most Used Rooms are the Focus Rooms
Every house has a few rooms people tend to focus on. While we’ve already gone through some generalized staging tips on our Stage to Sell page, some rooms need a little extra TLC when selling a home.
Entryway/Foyer– This one is pretty easy. The entryway or foyer is the first thing people see when they step through your front door. How does it look? If it’s unorganized, messy or cluttered it could be an instant turn off for potential home buyers. Find a way to neatly store shoes, preferably out of sight. Keep jackets neatly hung up or in a closet. This is your only chance to make a great first impression when it comes to the inside of your home.
Kitchen– I have often heard that you don’t simply sell a house- you sell a kitchen. Home life often revolves around the kitchen. It is where food is prepared, where people tend to gather at parties, and where mail ends up piled on counter tops. This is a focus room. So how do we make it look amazing?
- CLEAN! There should not be any spatter marks or grease stains on the walls. The back splash should be cleaned daily. Any caulk between the back splash and counter that doesn’t look good should be replaced (this is quick, simple and cheap – DIY). Floors and baseboards should be kept clean. Cabinets should be clean.
- Counter tops need to be clear of clutter. A nice set of knives, appliances (coffee pot and toaster), maybe some matching canisters of dry goods, a plant or two. Nothing else should be on the counter tops. You want each prospective buyer to imagine him or herself cooking and gathering in this kitchen. It is up to you to create an open and fairly empty space in which they can dream.
- Organize your cabinets. If you’ve already started packing things up, consider including dishes as well. You don’t need that fine China in your cupboard right now if you’re moving. You may have plates for all occasions, pack up the ones you don’t need now. People will open your cabinets and pantry as they tour your home. Keep them clean and organized at all times.
- Keep an eye on the kitchen sink. It is a collector of dirty dishes, crumbs and grime. Get in the habit (and get your family in the habit) of putting every dish directly into the dishwasher after use. Be sure to wipe down the sink and dry it after every use. A nasty sink is unappealing and that is not the look you want.
Bathrooms– The bathrooms in a home are very high traffic areas. While you may not need to head into your bedroom very often throughout the day, everyone uses the bathroom multiple times each day, even if it’s just to check their hair.
- CLEAN! Again, yes, clean. Keep bathrooms spotless. This includes toilets, sinks, mirrors and floors. Any time water spots can be seen on a bathroom mirror, wipe the mirror down.
- Keep trash cans as empty as possible. Yes, you will use the trash cans in your bathrooms, but don’t let them overflow and be wary of what people can see in your trash cans.
- Wipe down showers and tubs after each use and be sure to keep the bathroom fan on during and after showering to ensure no moisture build up in your last few days or weeks of living in your house.
- Keep the master bath especially spotless. For whatever reason, people love to nit-pick when it comes to the master bath.
Bedrooms– Bedrooms are where people dream. Make it easy for potential buyers to daydream about how they would decorate your bedroom.
- Make the beds every morning as soon as you get up. This task is often left undone if a person exits the bedroom prior to completing it. Include pretty throw pillows if you have them. Even if you take them off when you sleep, they can add color and style to make your room look more inviting.
- Organize your closet and remove half your clothing and items. Make sure boxes aren’t piled on closet shelves. The goal here is to make your closets look as big as possible. Closets are important. Sure, anyone can go buy a wardrobe to add to existing closet space, but you don’t want people thinking of expenses when looking at your home. You want them to love it the way it is.
- Keep on-suite bathrooms clean. This has already been mentioned, but it’s important. Keep your personal items stored neatly in the medicine cabinet or below the sink.
- Close all dresser drawers and closet doors after getting dressed in the morning. An open drawer or door will draw the buyer’s eyes away from the beauty of the room and into your personal mess.
- Keep the tops of dressers and bookshelves cleared. A multitude of items on top of a shelf or dresser can make the room feel cluttered and it needs to feel large and inviting.
REMEMBER- DE-personalize your home. Make it easy for a potential buyer to imagine their furniture, family photos and personal items in your home. As you go through each of the focus rooms (and any other spaces), remove your life and stage the home to make room for the life buyers can imagine in your house.