Monday, December 24, 2007

Sell Your Home Faster with DIY Home Staging: Make Your Home Look Like a Hotel

If you want to sell a home, look at a hotel. Most specialize in depersonalized and clutter-free areas designed for mass appeal. That concept is a winner in residential real estate, say home stagers.
''Staged'' properties sell about 50 percent faster than homes stuffed with quirky collections, unique interiors and personal photographs. Many professional tricks are easy and affordable.
Create curbside appeal. An unkempt lawn, dying plants and a dirty walkway will discourage sellers, says Angelina Perez, owner of Bertone, a home-staging company based in Aventura. She recommends sprucing up the lawn with affordable plants, fresh mulch and the use of a pair of clippers.

Hire or rent a pressure cleaner. Clean the driveway, walkway and exterior walls. Consider new paint for the facade. And look out for small handprints or paw prints on doors and windows.

Depersonalize. Remove personal collections, one-of-a kind accessories and even family photographs, says Mark Baratto, a certified home stager and real estate agent at, a South Florida-based home staging company.

Streamline. Too much furniture and clutter detract from the basic bones of a home. ''If you can't see it, you can't sell it,'' Baratto says.

Hit the sales. Baratto recommends buying vases, candles and generic art from the sales section of Pier I and other retail chains. Look for generic items. ''You gotta think hotel,'' Baratto says. Also keep an eye out for lightly scented candles, especially those that smell like just-baked apple pie or chocolate chip cookies.

Spruce up the bathroom. Toss out the old shower curtain and replace unmatched, thread-worn towels. Shop for looks and don't fret over the quality of the towels, Perez says. ``It's more of a show. You're showcasing your home.''

Clean, clean, clean. If you're not a competent housekeeper, hire a professional crew to do your dirty work. Rent a carpet cleaner or hire a professional.

It all goes back to the hotel-room concept. If a room appears dirty or untidy, hotel guests promptly check out and leave.

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Sharon Harvey Rosenberg is the author of The Frugal Duchess of South Beach:How to Live Well and Save Money... Anywhere! , which will be published in May of 2008 by DPL Press.


1 comment: said...


Congratulations on your column, very appropriate given the market conditions.

I would however consider the checklist that you have listed here a 'pre-staging' action plan to-do list.

Staging is the activites that occurs once these pre-staging tasks have been completed.

Staging is when we arrange the furnishings to better show the property (show the space) add the sparkle to the property with accessories.