5 Cheap Staging Tips

The house selling process involves more steps than most people realize. It’s important to hire a Realtor that has a thorough marketing plan with different strategies to sell your home. One important strategy is staging. Often times home owners want to skip the step of staging their home when they decide to sell it. In some cases, this can cost you a lot of money. Homes that are staged sell quicker and for more money than those that aren’t. It will cost you a little up front but the return you’ll get from the sale will make up for it.

Last month I showed a young couple two houses back to back in a Federal Way neighborhood. The houses were very similar in it’s floor plan and had the same amenities. The first house was clean, but completely empty. The couple thought it was nice but they weren’t wowed by it. The second house had been staged. It had a different feel to it; homier. The couple was impressed by this house. They said they could see themselves living there and that’s the goal. You want potential buyers to be able to picture themselves living their life there. It’s easier to do when there’s furniture and decor inside.

Here’s some basic tips to help you get started.


The obvious isn’t always obvious to everyone. I’ve seen houses that have filthy floors, streaky windows, and cobwebs in the corners. The house isn’t new but you want it to look that way. If you’re not a fan of cleaning hire someone. Just make sure it gets done.


Personal effects can be distracting and make some people feel uncomfortable. Remove any photos, religious symbols, sports team gear, and children’s artwork. These items may be great for you but you don’t want the buyer to be thinking about walking through a strangers house as they see your stuff.


Too much stuff in a room can make it seem smaller. This goes for furniture, wall art, and plants. Prospective buyers will look everywhere so hiding stuff in the closets and cabinets isn’t recommended. Since you’re in the process of moving this should be something you’re doing anyway. Ideally, you want to pack away anything you won’t need to use in the immediate 30 to 60 days. I know whenever I move I have to take a couple trips to a donation center to get rid of the stuff I no longer use.

Remove odors.

It’s more than just making the house look nice. You want it to smell clean as well. Clean the litter box. Empty the diaper genie. Take out the garbage. Your may not smell anything but someone who hasn’t adjusted to the scents will. Open the windows to air the place out. If you’re really want to impress, bake some fresh cookies a few minutes before a showing. Good smells entice good memories and after looking at houses all week, buyers will need the help keeping your house top of mind.

Neutralize and give purpose.

It’s important that every room has it’s own use. Rearrange the furniture in such a way that it appeals to buyers. When they walk in, it should be obvious that this room is the bedroom and this room is the study. If you haven’t given the walls a fresh coat a paint, I highly suggest you go out and buy some. The walls should be calm, relaxing colors. The bright pink bedroom may be great for your 3 year old but not so much for the 16 year old boy that wants to claim it. And yes, that is a real example. It may be a little tough but it is best to take as much of your personality that you put into the house out. This makes it easier for the next family.

Beverly James



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