Six Staging Mistakes when Selling a Home

Six Staging Mistakes when Selling a Home

I get to view a variety of homes and areas in the Austin metroplex and I always notice the staging, always…and so do my buyers. Staging really does help buyers view a home differently, whether it’s vacant or lived in. But sometimes staging can do more damage than good.

Over Staging

We’ve all heard the phrase “less is more” and this is certainly the case here. A table need not have so much decoration that you don’t see the table, in fact you don’t notice the dining room at all. Remember staging is to accentuate and show off the home, not upstage the home. This is like an extra in a play upstaging the star, it’s a clear do not! The downfall of overstating is that it can make the home look cluttered, out of style and can cause the buyers to pay more attention to the decor than the home. I don’t want my clients to walk away from a home not remembering the dining room and either does the seller!

Out of Date Decor

I don’t think you need to follow every style trend to be up to date on your decor. In fact there are always several timeless pieces that are great for staging. But that mauve floor vase is not one of those pieces. Out of date decor just highlights any out of date features to the home, even worse it can make a home look out of date. Best not to use it if it’s just going to make people giggle. They are here to see the home, not the 80’s throwback decor. I will say if a home was built in the mid century and is more modern in it’s build, then mid century modern staging is a great feature. That would be an exception, not a rule.

Too Personal

Staging items that incorporate a family’s name, photos or memorabilia is more of a distraction than you’d think. I have been here many times. I am touring a home with my clients and we are looking at the photos and gazing at the personal items more than we are looking at the house. This is a huge problem. You do not want buyers to walk out of your home knowing that you had a great time in Florida last year but having no clue what your living room looked like! A photo on the book case is not going to cause this problem, but a wall of photos will. Likewise, a collection of one item paired down and tastefully displayed is fine, but filling a room with a collection is sure to distract the potential buyers from the room in general.


Leaving Out the Great Outdoors

This is an easy one to forget. We get so focused on the house we forget the yard. However, this is the first and last impression of the home. Having great curb appeal is more than a landscaped yard. Potted plants on the porch, a nice bench and maybe some throw pillows will be far more inviting than a bare porch with an old mat and lockbox. When buyers go out to the back yard show them the life they could have in this yard. This is more than a yard, it’s an extension of the home. Make the yard just as gorgeous as the home and the buyers will be excited to put in an offer!

Too Colorful

No matter what the current design trend, there are always certain colors that tend to be a bit popular. Whether it be orange, yellow, green or what have you – there is nothing wrong with color…if used tastefully and appropriately. Too much color is just another distraction. Instead of buyers walking away remembering the updated cabinets in the kitchen they will remember all the orange used to decorate and call it the orange kitchen! They are left feeling like everything in the kitchen was orange. Once again, we don’t want them to be distracted from the actual features of the home.

Leaving Vacant Homes Very Vacant

Even vacant homes can be beautiful

Not all home sellers can afford to fully furnish a vacant home, and that is ok! But adding a splash of color to the vacant rooms with some well placed accessories can really help the buyers envision the potential of a home. It also helps give the photos new life! A vacant home without any color or staging can often look very bland and lifeless. It’s hard to capture the features of the home in photos without any decor or color. It’s more common to hear a buyer ooh and ahhh over a well staged home versus a vacant home.

These staging tweaks can take you from being the ordinary home on the market to the extraordinary. You want a buyer to be excited when seeing your home, help them experience the excitement as soon as they drive up to your property.

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