There are advantages and disadvantages to showing an empty home.
Having nobody to clean up after significantly simplifies the task of making sure your home is ready to show at a moment’s notice, as nothing dooms a listing more quickly than a prospective buyer discovering piles of dirty laundry in the closet, finding junk stashed under a bed, or catching a glimpse at messy a bathroom or dirty dishes. It’s also much easier to maintain dusting and sweeping.
However, to a certain degree, evidence of life looks good on a home listed for sale. An empty home can seem sterile and lifeless. Leaving behind the desolate landscape of an empty home can make minor superficial flaws stand out like sore thumbs. Staging a home gives the prospective buyer an idea of relative space and potential, and keeps the home’s character in perspective of the big picture.
After completely moving out of a for-sale home, the last thing anyone wants to do is purchase and hassle with moving more furniture. It may be useful to keep in mind that some area galleries will gladly take advantage of both empty wall space and the frequent traffic moving through, allowing them to show more art than expensive gallery space can provide. Additionally, for similar reasons, local furniture stores may be willing to take advantage of your empty home space to display furniture sets.
Here’s a checklist to keep in mind when staging your home!
Less furniture = more space
Choose a small, functional grouping of pieces that can be placed away from walls. Lower furniture makes ceilings feel higher. Stage pieces in conversational arrangements that also allow for a natural flow of traffic.
Don’t underestimate the importance of lighting
Well placed lighting will make a huge difference in the perception of space. Swap-in higher wattage bulbs and utilize multiple kinds of lighting fixtures. Decorative accent lamps and ambient overhead lighting are important but don’t leave out task lighting in tighter places such as corner desks, cabinets, pantries, and closets.
Paint it neutral
A fresh coat of paint will do wonders for any room to make it look extra clean. Choose neutral shades that warm it up or cool it down depending on the room’s purpose. Pick out a few accents that complement the room’s temperature as well.
Display your art
Arrange pieces creatively to add interest to a room. A neutrally painted room provides more freedom to coordinate art with accents. Choosing artworks that closely match a bright wall color will neutralize bright, busy pieces.
Bring in some real life
House plants, flowers, or even some simple greenery from your yard will add life to any room!
Finish those unfinished projects…
It’s time to wrap them up and get them done because they’re going to be noted first thing by any home-buyer. Don’t expect to receive asking price offers for a home that’s going to need work! After financing a loan to purchase a home, every penny counts.