The saying goes that you only get one chance to make a first impression and that applies not only to our personal and professional lives but also to real estate. Humans are sensory by nature, and those senses are linked to emotions that often determine our decisions.
When you have the opportunity to capture someone’s emotions, make them gasp when they walk in a room or see a home for the first time. If you can do that you’ve won the first impression – and made a great one.
As you begin the home staging process, keep this in mind and target those emotions through sensory input. Colors, smells, sounds, even the temperature, and humidity of the interior of the home can have a powerful impact on a buyer. This is where they will live their lives, raise their families, live out their retirement, tell their stories. Staging should make it easy for them to place themselves in each room and picture a life there.
This is how you make that happen.
Depersonalize to create a blank slate for buyers to write their own lives upon.
Your buyers want to be able to see themselves living in their new home, not someone else’s. So before you do anything, depersonalize it. Remove the family photos, the artwork on the fridge, the personalized plaque over your desk, and other “homey” items. Turn your home into a blank slate so that buyers can see themselves in the space.
Freshen up the interior with a new coat of paint.
A fresh coat of paint just looks nice, it’s relatively inexpensive, and when combined with cleaning and decluttering, it can really add some oomph to your selling power. However, when you decide to take the plunge and pick up the brush, choose neutral colors. Go with soft, inviting colors like off-white, beige, white, and pale gray. You can even use several complimentary colors throughout the house, but avoid emotionally charged colors like lavender, lime green, or pink.
Define the purpose of each room to maximize the living space.
Making every square foot of a home appear to be usable space is definitely a great selling point. An unused room with no real purpose can be turned into a craft room or home office. Transform attics and basements into family rooms, guest bedrooms, or libraries. When buyers can see the potential of a room, they can easily place themselves in it, and they also see that no space is wasted
Use lighting to your advantage.
The right light can transform a room. In fact, good lighting is at the top of most homebuyers’ wishlists. Letting outside light in can make a room larger, but interior light is also key. For maximum effect, use three types of lighting: accent (table, shelf, wall), task (reading, pendant), and ambient (overhead). Combine these three to create an attractive, inviting space that will draw your buyers in and make it feel like home.
4 - 6 Del Carmine, Wakefield, MA 01880
6 Swain Pl, Wakefield, MA 01880
As you go on the house hunt, you’re likely to attend many different open houses. After awhile you can get confused as to what you have seen and where you saw it. Each open house or home showing is only a short window of time. As a buyer, you’re trying to get the feel for a house. Being an observant home shopper can help you to avoid a lot of problems down the road. Check out some of the biggest red flags that you need to look out for when you attend an open house.
The Candles Are Burning Bright
You walk into an open house and see a lovely candle lit on the kitchen table. While it may make you feel all warm and fuzzy, it’s not always a good sign. Candles are a great way to mask odors. There could possibly be a musty odor coming from the sink, the basement, or another part of the house. This spells hidden damage and possible danger for you as a homebuyer. While the home inspection should pick up on things like this, you don’t necessarily want to get that far in the process. The art of masking odors could be a sign that the sellers are trying to hide something.
Be Your Own Inspector
As you walk through the home do you notice squeaky floor boards, cracks in the walls, cracks in the ceilings, or a drippy faucet? Maybe you see some patches on the walls or mirrors and paintings that seem out of place? These are all issues that could be signs of a greater problem. Keep in mind that no house is perfect, but you should do a little investigating on your own while walking through the house at showings.
The Home Doesn’t Appear Cared For
Curb appeal is one thing, but a home that looks unkept is a sign of a larger problem for you. Has the lawn been mowed? Is the fence in disrepair? How does the home appear from the outside at first glance? There are plenty of ways that you can fix up a home to make it your own once you buy it, but the question is just how much of a challenge are you up for? There is always a chance that you’ll have large maintenance costs when a home hasn’t been properly maintained by the previous owners.
Searching for homes and going to open houses can be fun. It can also be an educational experience to help you narrow down what you’re looking for and what you can handle as a homeowner.