Staging your house is about more than just beautiful furniture and decorations. While those elements may make an impact, they are just temporary. The real impact comes from the more permanent features of your home. Here are some of the top home improvements you can perform to prepare your house for staging.
Plants and Shrubbery
Introducing luscious green shrubbery and plants in your yard can do a lot for the overall exterior look. Plants and flowers in your yard give the space a more put together and well-maintained look, as long as you care for them. They can also be a cost-effective and budget-friendly option as, depending on the plants you choose, they are generally not very expensive. If you are staging your house, make sure to pick plants that are easy to maintain so that the future buyer will also be able to care for them even if they’re a plant novice.
You may also consider hiring a professional gardener to fix up your garden as you prepare to stage your home. They could shape shrubbery, care for flowers, pull weeds, and even take on larger projects like tree pruning. A little love and care in your garden can make a huge difference for the exterior look of your home.
Another big project you could consider as you are staging your house is repairing your roof. New roofs are a big investment but also have a huge return on investment. Being able to include on your house listing that your roof is brand new could be a big draw for potential buyers. Not only that, it greatly increases the curb appeal of your home as well.
Whether you decide to completely redo your roof, or just focus on roof repair, you will want to consider the type of material you use. One of the most common types of roofing material is asphalt. It’s one of the least expensive materials and comes in a variety of colors. A new and very popular option is metal roofing. Metal roofs have an extremely long lifespan, about 40 to 70 years, however, it is one of the most expensive options. As you select your new roofing material, keep in mind your budget, the look you are going for, and what will bring you the best return on investment.
Face Of Your Home
Enhancing the exterior face of your home will do a lot to prepare you for staging your house and will greatly add to the value of your home. Here are a few ways you can quickly and cost-effectively give your home a face-lift:
- Paint: Something as simple as a fresh coat of paint can make a huge difference. In fact, according to a 2012 Home Improvement survey, painting the exterior of your home relates to a 55% return on investment. If you have a home with a lighter paint color, you’ll be surprised to see how much the color has changed as you paint a fresh coat. New paint can make an old home look much newer. Homes with exteriors like brick won’t require paint, though cleaning it with a pressure washer could have great results.
- Doors: Replacing the doors on the exterior of your home will also have a huge impact on the curb appeal. Even just painting your front door a new color will give it a fresh, new look. You may consider replacing the door with a new option that has a window or some detail that gives the exterior of your house a little more personality. Don’t stop at your front door though. If you have a garage door, you may also consider updating or replacing that door. Talk with a residential garage door specialist to get some options for updating your garage door.
- Windows: Window repair should be one of the main things you focus on as you update the exterior of your home. Old, rundown windows can give you house a much older look, which is the last thing you want when staging your house. You don’t have to necessarily replace your entire window, you can start with cleaning them inside and out, and repainting the trim around them. You may also consider installing shutters or window boxes for an updated look. However, if your windows are old and have more than just cosmetic issues, you may consider replacing them before you try to sell your home.
That bathroom is one of the highest traffic rooms in the house and as such, can show signs of wear and tear much sooner than other rooms. A bathroom remodel can yield upwards of a 60% return on investment, as long as it’s done well.
One of the first areas you might address in a bathroom remodel is the tub/shower area. A tub with damage can have more issues than not looking nice. Water can leak into your flooring or walls which will cause water damage and a potentially very costly fix. If you have issues with your tub, contact a repairman for bathtub repair, or consider replacing the entire tub if yours is old and dingy.
You may also want to consider updating the plumbing in your bathroom. Even if there aren’t any current issues, a general update will add to the value of your home and will help any potential new buyers to feel more confident that they won’t face any issues after they move in. Talk with your local residential plumbing expert to find out what updates you can make in your bathroom.
After you’ve made bigger improvements, such as the tub and plumbing, you can also consider some smaller projects that will also have a big impact on the look of your bathroom. Something as small as changing the lighting can make a huge difference. Especially if your bathroom does not have any exterior windows, changing the type of lightbulbs and lighting will give your bathroom a totally different feel and can help as your preparing for staging your house. As a house’s bathroom is where you do things like learn how to treat a cut at home and focus on your personal grooming, the lighting is going to make all the difference and attract the right buyer. You can also consider updating the cabinet and drawer hardware, giving the walls a fresh coat of paint, or adding wallpaper to make it more appealing to buyers.
Another area of your home that you can make improvements to while staging your house is the kitchen. Like the bathroom, the kitchen is a high traffic room and gets a lot of wear and tear. There are some big scale projects like replacing the flooring or appliances that are more expensive. But these kinds of improvements will also have a big return on investment. In fact, kitchen remodels usually have a return on investment of around 54%.
If you don’t have the budget to make big-scale improvements like new flooring or new appliances, there are a few smaller projects that can also help your kitchen to feel more fresh and new are ready for staging. You may consider new paint for the walls, or even for the cabinetry. Switching from a darker color to a light color will open up the area and make it seem bigger, which is a great tip for smaller kitchens. You may also consider switching the lighting in the kitchen as well. If your kitchen doesn’t have a lot of natural light, changing the lightbulbs or adding more lighting fixtures will have a big impact.
As previously discussed with both the bathroom and kitchen, lighting can make or break a room. As you prepare for staging your house, you may consider walking through each room at different times of the day to get a feel for the lighting. A room that doesn’t have an overhead light, but does have lots of windows will be great during the day, but as the sun goes down, the mood will completely change. And the opposite may be true for rooms that don’t have great natural lighting. Take some time to figure out the lighting in your home and make adjustments from there.
For rooms that don’t have enough light fixtures, this can be an easy fix. While staging your house, you may bring in more decorative lamps. You may also consider having an overhead light installed in rooms that don’t already have one. For rooms that do have lighting fixtures already installed but still not great light, consider switching the fixture or the type of lightbulb.
If you have the budget to make some bigger changes, now may be the time where you redo or install new windows. Adding a window to a room will have a huge difference not only on the look but also on how big the room feels. You may also consider installing new casings to your interior windows to change the look. If you have a dark casing, that can hamper the amount of light that seems to come in. Lighter casings reflect light and make it brighter.
Another area that you may consider making improvements to as you prepare for staging your house is the garage. A well maintained and finished garage adds great value to a home. It can be used for storage, a workshop, even a play area for kids. The options are seemingly endless, and as long as you maintain it well, potential buyers will see that opportunity.
As you prepare for staging your house, there are a few improvements you can in your garage that can have a big impact on the value of your home. Refinishing the concrete floor to make sure it has no cracks is a great start. Make sure there is good lighting in the garage as well to make it appear more spacious and open. You may also want to look into garage door repair or replacement if the door system or track is old. The last thing you want is to have problems with the door opening, or loud squeaky noise as a potential buyer opens it. As previously discussed, replacing your garage door can also have a big impact on the exterior look of your home, so you can get more bang for your buck with this improvement.
As you prepare for staging your house, you also want to consider some general updates you can make to systems in your home. HVAC is a great place to start. If you are staging your house during the summer, you want the air conditioning to be running properly so people don’t feel like they’re walking into a sauna. Other improvements, like a maintenance check on the water heater, or an update on the furnace, will add value to your home. Not only that, but potential buyers will also feel the peace of mind in knowing that they won’t encounter any large scale or expensive problems when they purchase your house.
As you prepare to stage your house, make sure that you apply a few of these improvement ideas. There are options for both a smaller budget and a bigger budget. As you do so, you’ll raise the value of your home and will surely have more success in finding potential buyers.