Styling your property for sale is almost a given in this day and age. Not only does it help create a great first impression, but it improves the appeal of your home to potential buyers and drives more people through the front door.
That means more competition for your property, and potentially, more money in your pocket.
Think about how quickly you flick through online listings. If the look and feel of a home doesn’t catch you eye, you’ll scroll on by.
A well presented home generally sells faster, and for a better price than a home that isn’t styled. Sellers who use a property stylist often receive a return many times greater than the original investment. It’s difficult to put a figure on the financial return as it varies from property to property, but statistics show it can boost your sale price by as much as 10%.
Presentation is everything in real estate. It’s a bit like a job interview. You’re not going to turn-up in tracksuit pants with tomato sauce stains on your t-shirt when applying for a new position. You’re going to put on a nice outfit and take care with your presentation to give the best possible impression, and hopefully get the job. The same principle applies when you sell property.
Engaging a professional stylist can be well worth it, financially and emotionally. They take care of all the heavy lifting during what can be a stressful time.
It’s not just about throwing furniture into a house. Placement and proportion are key. A professional stylist will use furniture and accessories to make rooms feel more spacious and inviting. Proper positioning of furniture that is the right scale and style for the space also helps potential buyers work out how they will use a room, and what will fit. Once you take the guess work out for the buyer, they’re already imagining themselves in your home, and they’re making an emotional connection with your property. And that puts the ball in your court when your agent is negotiating on your behalf for the best possible price.
While investing in a professional pays off, there are some things you can do to give your home the edge when it hits the market, styled or not. Anna Derham from Derham Interiors Property Styling offers up a few key tips.
Remove the family photos, ornaments and knick-knacks on every surface. While you may have a soft spot for the snow dome from Thredbo, and your antique doll collection, clutter distracts buyers from seeing the potential of the space. It also makes rooms feel smaller and darker with bits and bobs on every surface. Edit your furniture. Rooms should have any easy flow for those entering. Now is the time for your grandmother’s 10-foot sideboard to have a spell in the garage, unless it’s taking pride of place in a ballroom.
- Take some care and repair.
Re-paint scratched and chipped walls and skirting, replace blown light-globes, repair the screen door, replace the broken tile in the kitchen and the missing handle on the bathroom vanity. A well presented home imparts on the buyer that you’ve taken care of the property and looked after it. If door-knobs are hanging off, lights don’t work and the air con sounds like a strangled cat, they’re going to leave with the impression that the home isn’t loved and cared for – and wonder what else you’re hiding.
- Everything has a place
Think about how the room is best used, and how to best place the furniture. You don’t want to walk into the lounge room into the back of a couch. Consider size as well as utility. Is that seven-seater black leather modular sofa a bit big for that lounge room? Would a double bed be better than a king size in your smallest bedroom? Do you really need the giant dinosaur sculpture in the master suite?
- Light & Bright
This may seem pretty obvious, but dust and wipe down surfaces, remove cobwebs, wash marked walls, steam clean your carpets, and air out the rooms. Smelling stale sneakers when you walk into the master bedroom is not going to endear your home to any buyer. Clean your windows inside and out to let as much light in. Change blown light bulbs and make sure thee replacements are bright enough to illuminate the room properly. Bedrooms and living rooms, use a warm white 3000K light-globe, whereas kitchens and bathrooms can be a bit brighter, with 4000K globe which throws a neutral tone. Don’t use 5000K cool globes, especially in tiled rooms, unless you’re planning on using your dining room table for surgical procedures. It makes the room feel cold and uninviting.
- The power of plants.
Add some greenery and bring the outside in – whether pot plants, or flowers, or even a potted tree, you cannot under-estimate the power of plants. They bring colour and cheer to a room and freshen the air.
- Set the Mood
Don’t go overboard on the candles and diffusers. One or two will do through-out the house – otherwise it looks like you’re trying to hide something. And make sure they’re the same fragrance. Candles help set the mood – but layered lighting with table and floor lamps can work just as well.
- Deck your Walls
Put art up on blank walls to imbue some personality and set the mood. Artwork creates a focal point and helps tie elements in a room together. Mirrors are also an excellent device to reflect light and space – and do wonders helping a dark room feel lighter and brighter, or a small space feel bigger.
Your home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make, so it makes sense to put some effort into its presentation when you sell.
This post is sponsored by Fitzgerald Real Estate Agents