Moving Tips: How to Self -Stage Your Home to Sell It Faster and at a Higher Price

When selling your home, you must always be ready for potential buyers to come walking through the door. If you want to get the highest possible price for your home, you may need to do more than just tidying up.

Luckily, we have channeled our expertise from 80,000 household moves per year into four of the most important steps to saving yourself some stress by getting organized before move day.

According to the National Association of Realtors, staging your home is one of the best ways to increase your chances of a quick sale at a higher price. On average, a staged home vs. a non-staged home will sell for up to 10% more and 95% of staged homes sell in 11 days or less.

There are professionals who can help you stage your home to help sell it, but here are five tips for what you can do yourself to stage your home and declutter key areas. 

Set the stage

If you’ve ever been house hunting in your life, you know how hard it can be to visualize how a home will look once you’ve put your stamp on it, and your family is living in it.

That’s why the first step to successfully staging a home is to clear it of as many unnecessary items as possible. You want to make it as easy as possible for potential buyers to see where they could fit in the home.

Focus most of your decluttering efforts on the small things first — go throughout your home, starting with the kitchen, living room, dining room and master bedroom and bathroom. Clear out anything you no longer need (this will help with the moving process as well) and purge these items by giving them away or having a yard sale.

Even if it’s all tucked away in your garage — clean it out, organize what is left so it looks neat and tidy. You want to sell an idea to people that if they buy your house, their life will be better in some way, maybe it will even magically become better organized. 

Next, go through your home – maybe enlist a friend, family member or your real estate agent to help – with fresh eyes and try to see rooms the way a prospective buyer would.

Focus on the furniture, and be honest about what is either a little bulky or too personal to your own taste. This could be your grandmother’s antique armoire that you can’t do without but is a little too large for the dining room. Or, an old and worn recliner chair that your significant other just had to have, but maybe isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing piece in your home.

Removing some of these items will make a room appear larger and allow prospective buyers to picture their own furniture in the space. 

Focus on your fridge

The fridge is the perfect metaphor for the depersonalization process in staging a home to sell.

The kitchen is a major selling point in any home, and most people use a fridge to display photos of memorable vacations, artwork, magnets and other personal favorites.

However, when you’re trying to sell your home, your refrigerator can easily appear messy to others, and it’s a very personalized space. You want buyers to be picturing themselves living in your home, not looking at pictures of your last vacation.

That’s why it’s important to keep rooms and surfaces clean from clutter while depersonalizing the space. Imagine every room as a messy, personalized fridge.

Declutter personalized spaces in your home by:

  • Focus on artwork and design, and remove family photos or trinkets 
  • Put away puzzles, games, video game consoles (unless you’re using them to purposefully accentuate a space, such as a basement)
  • If it has your name on it, remove it: this includes awards, certificates, and mail laying around the house, as well as any other personal effects 
  • If your kids have posters stuck to the walls, homework piled up on their desk, or a chalkboard wall full of messages – remove as much of it as possible. The new owners may not have kids, or may not have kids the same age or gender as yours – keep it neutral. 

​Make the bathroom beautiful

When you’re selling a home, a clean, clutter-free bathroom is critical, especially a master bathroom. There’s nothing worse for selling a house than a bathroom with half-empty makeup tubes and razors strewn about. Your house should look aspirational, and that clutter only serves to remind people of the same messy issues they’re trying to escape by moving into a new home.

Tidy the bathroom by removing personal items from the countertops and shower, including makeup brushes, toothbrushes and shampoo bottles. If you need to, pack away a box of not frequently used toiletries to get them out of the way altogether, since buyers will likely be opening drawers and closets to inspect as well. 

Then, make sure you always have fresh (maybe even new) towels, an air freshener and maybe a plant or other decorative item in the space to bring in some color. 

All hail more storage space

Storage is key for homebuyers. They either need more of it, or have it in their current home already don’t want to give any up. Even if your house has a lot of storage, just make it look neater with shelving units or by simply straitening up. A simple trick is to remove boxes of holiday decorations and store them ahead of time, which will typically free up a lot of space is your storage area, basement or garage. This free space will allow people to see how big a storage room really is.

In your closets, especially your master closet, take out all the clothes you’re not currently using so that everything looks like it fits comfortably on the racks. A closet that is bursting at the seams, no matter how large it is, will inevitably end up looking small instead of giving the ‘wow’ impression that it should.

Call in the professionals

When you’re short on time, take advantage of the services a professional moving company like Suddath, with a niche Declutter and Store program to help you organize your move.

When you use these decluttering and packing services, you can get help with storing any unnecessary furniture and items before you show the home. Then, when you’re ready to move into your new home, those items will be delivered alongside everything else – it’s as if you’ve moved in two phases. 

There’s no unsightly storage container left in your driveway to take away from the curb appeal, either. Instead, the moving company secures the storage container so that you don’t have to be responsible for it. This offers a turnkey solution, so you can speed up the decluttering process and make a great first impression for a faster and more lucrative sale.

There are different types of packing services available if you’re looking for help. Feel free to contact us to talk about full, partial or do-it-yourself packing options for your next move.