Staging the Bathrooms
"Kitchens and baths" ... that's the expression used by real estate folks to indicate the areas of a home that carry the most resale value. Kitchens and baths. We already talked about staging your kitchen. But what about those bathrooms? How do you carry your home staging efforts in there?
I can sum up your bathroom plan-of-attack with two simple words — cleaning and updating. If you remember, "clean and bright" was our motto for staging the kitchen area. That same motto applies to the bathrooms. Bathrooms should be sparkling clean and well-lit (but not overly bright).
If you add "luxurious" onto that motto, you'll score extra points with home buyers. Clean, bright and luxurious. Those are the keys to staging a bathroom.
Here are some specific tips for carrying your home-staging efforts into the bathrooms of your house.
- If your bathroom fixtures (handles, spigots, etc.) are outdated, replace them with sleek and modern fixtures. Stay away from brass fixtures — they bring the 1980's to mind.
- Put some high-quality plush towels on the towel rack. Color-coordinate them with the bathroom's color scheme (matching them to the rug, flower arrangement, etc.).
- Fresh flower arrangements do a lot for a bathroom, both in appearance and aroma.
- Before showing the home, clean those bathrooms until they look like they're in a model home. Signs of use, such as soap scum and recently used sinks, will turn buyers off.
- Glass shower door a little gross? Remove it and take it outside for cleaning. Use a solution of one part muriatic acid to 10 parts water (wear goggles when mixing). Scrub it with steel wool, rinse it clean, and replace the door.
- If you have the budget and you really want to increase your home's appeal, consider installing a pedestal sink. They are very popular with buyers right now, and they make the bathroom seem larger by freeing up space.
Staging the bedrooms
When potential buyers enter the bedrooms of your home, they want to see one thing about all else ... comfort. Bedrooms do not have appliances or fixtures. Not usually, anyway. So home staging in a bedroom usually consists of painting, furniture arrangement and some light decor.
Think "neutral, comfortable and spacious" when you stage your bedrooms for buyers. Keep those words in mind during your staging process, and you will be in good shape.
Here are some specific home staging tips for the bedrooms.
- Use soft, neutral colors with paints and color schemes. Earth tones are always a safe color that will appeal to the majority.
- Make bedrooms appear larger by limiting furniture to a bed, dresser and a couple of small items. Too much furniture makes a bedroom seem cramped.
- Remove the bulk of your clothes from closets and pack them away in storage. You will have to pack them soon anyway, and doing it early will make your closets appear larger.
- Invest in some new and luxurious bedding (comforter, sheets, accent pillows). You can take them with you when you move, and they will improve the look of the current bedrooms while it's on the market.
- Remove personal items such as photos. Remember, you want buyers to see themselves in the home ... not you and your family.
Conclusion & Going Forward
This tutorial on professional home staging only scratches the surface. The number and scale of improvements you make to your home prior to selling are only limited by your time and budget. Just keep in mind that there is a fine line between spending enough for staging and spending too much. After all, the goal of home selling is to make money, not spend it.
Here's a financial home staging tip to take away with you:
You should only spend as much on home staging as needed to achieve the desired effect. The desired effect, of course, is to sell the home quickly and for a good price. In a seller's market, you won't have to do as much work to sell your home. In a buyer's market, you'll have to do more work. The key is finding the right balance.