When moving in Toronto or anywhere in the GTA, home staging is a crucial step of the process. After all, you want to get the most when selling your home, and you want the buyers to be happy with their purchase as well. At Phillips Moving, we’re happy to help you with home staging. Start with the tips below, and when you’re ready, give us a call!
Home Staging Tip #1: Attitude
Before you do anything, you have to stop thinking of your house as a HOME and start thinking about it as an investment – probably the most important investment you have made so far. You want to get the largest possible return on it, so you can move on to bigger and better things, right?
With less time and more technology available to almost anyone, chances are that potential buyers are first searching the internet for the properties they might be interested in. You need to have the best possible pictures available on your online listing, as that “first look” might determine whether the prospects will want to visit your property or will pass over it. These photos have to impress and generate an emotional desire from the potential buyer to see the property “live”. If you don’t have pictures that stand out from the others, you are probably missing out on dozens, if not hundreds of potential buyers.
Home Staging Tip #2: Curb Appeal
Curb appeal (or, lack of thereof) can deter a visitor from wanting to go in – have you ever driven by a house for sale, disliking it from the outside and leaving without even giving it a chance? Avoid this situation happening to you.
Walk around the house and ensure that the path and the perimeter of the house are clear – no toys, bicycles, garbage cans or unused building materials are visible. Phillips Moving can come pack, clear and store these items at our warehouse until you’re ready to move them to your new residence.
Scrub and wash the front porch, the door as well as the trim, the mailbox and polish the street number. Phillips can arrange to clean all areas needed.
Put all small items away from the patio/deck in order to not distract the eye from the available space. Phillips can store all items that are not used everyday until your home sells.
Home Staging Tip #3: Make space
Remember, the buyers want to see space, above anything else. You want the visitors to focus on the house and not on your stuff. A cluttered house gives the impression of being poorly maintained and looks smaller than it really is. Go through the house, room by room, and take everything out but the essentials – decide what to throw out, what to donate and what to put in Phillips’ storage warehouse in Toronto.
Pay particular attention to:
- Floors – please no piles on the floor anywhere.
- Horizontal surfaces – take everything off, and then put only a few items back. No knick knacks, photo displays, large collections, magazines, bottles/jars, small appliances and anything else that might distract the eye from the beautiful features of your property. Remember to clean the kitchen and bathroom countertops as well – if you have not used an item for three months or you can do without it for the next three – store it at Phillips Moving.
- Book shelves – put your books and magazines upright and in order.
- Closets – every closet has to be cleaned out, maybe more than once, until they all look spacious and well organized.
- Garage – yes, even the garage has to be de-cluterred and emptied out as much as possible. The visitors will be considering how much space is available in your garage, so show them.
- Furniture and wall hangings – too much furniture impedes good traffic flow in the house and makes it look smaller, so the golden rule is, “Less is more!” The same applies to art and accessories – if in doubt, take them off and keep only one or two items per wall.
De-cluttering is a big task and it might be daunting. But, in any case, you will have to do it before you move, so start now and you will feel better. De-cluttering, in our experience, is one of the most valuable Home Staging tips you will get, so don’t ignore it. If you need help from someone who has done this for many years, give us a call.
Home Staging Tip #4: Clean and Fix
As far as Home Staging tips go, this might have been #1 on the list. It seems obvious, but you would be surprised to see how many people neglect this one. If you are not able or willing to do it yourself, hire a professional. We recommend walking through each room and making two lists – one list for cleaning and the other for fixing. Pay particular attention to the entrance, as it is the first space the visitors will see, followed by the kitchen and bathrooms.
Don’t forget the walls and the ceilings (cobwebs!), windows, and appliances. If you have carpets and they have not been shampooed in more than a year, wash them. Remember, if nothing else, your home should be spotless for the shows. Phillips can assist you in finding the right contractor to help you repair and clean.
Fixing small but visible things is important. Chipped paint, loose or missing tiles, broken door handles, a closet door that doesn’t quite close properly – all the little things you never had time to fix – unfortunately, they can become a BIG turnoff for a potential buyer. After all, they probably don’t want to deal with the extra repairs while moving, unpacking and settling in. As well, it might make them wonder whether some other, more important things have been left uncared for in the house.
And an additional benefit might be that this process of “de-personalizing” your home will help you to get emotionally detached from it and prepare you for the sale and eventual move!
Home Staging Tip #5: Light It Up
A bright house is a great house. So, open all the blinds/curtains and make sure there is sufficient light in every room. Add fixtures, stand up or table lamps – you can’t have too much light!
Home Staging Tip #6: Space Optimization
Last but not least, the space management optimization and proper furniture and accessories placement is essential. It will give a home a warm and appealing look and feel. For example, the living room furniture has to be positioned so as to create a conversation area which will look toward the room’s focal point. A painting, a vase filled with decorative branches or a bowl of lemons will bring the ambiance to the room.
Don’t Forget to Ask for Help!
Remember, at Phillips Moving and Storage, we have decades of experience with moving households in the Greater Toronto Area. If you need help or advice with any part of the home staging process, give us a call – we’ll be happy to help!