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Preparing an unoccupied property for the market is a little bit different than arranging one that’s currently being lived in. Maybe your home didn’t sell quickly enough, and you just couldn’t pass up on the perfect place you found! Or, maybe you own several properties and had a tenant move out unexpectedly or have acquired a newly built house.

Whatever the reason may be, if you find yourself with a vacant home on your hands that you need to sell, these tips will help you do it successfully!

Enlist help with keeping an eye on the house.

You’re probably not going to be able or want to drive over to your empty house every day, especially if you’ve moved long distance. Make sure you take the appropriate measures to keep the property safe and protected.

Alert local authorities and ask them to make a note of your vacant home. This way they they’ll recognize any strange activity and can even schedule a drive-by every so often. It’s also a good idea to inform your old neighbors that your house will be unoccupied for a time, so they can be attentive and check in every once in a while, with an extra key.

Make it look occupied.

The best way to both entice buyers and deter criminals is to stage your vacant home so it looks lived in. Your most efficient and cost-effective option is to have a professional staging company come in to make the place look inviting to potential buyers and inhabited to criminals.

There are also a few little things you can do to make your home look occupied in addition to home staging! Keep the lights on or put them on a timer to give off the impression that the house is being used. Don’t forget to grab the newspaper and mail every few days either, so it doesn’t build up, create clutter, and signal an easy target.

Keep up with landscaping.

Don’t let the exterior of your vacant home fall to the wayside! Occupied or not, the outside of a home is the first impression buyers get of the space—make sure it doesn’t look neglected and unkempt. Boost curb appeal by mowing the lawn frequently and maintaining the front and back yards.

Trim the shrubbery and sculpt the garden and other greenery surrounding the property. A nice set of porch furniture and a welcome mat make a nice, charming touch too.

At Red House Staging & Interiors, we offer several packages to fit the needs of homes of every size and style, whether it’s an empty property or a full house. Contact us today to learn more about our budget-friendly, and high-end services, and watch that vacant home of yours fly off the market in no time!

 

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When you list your home for sale, the first thing you specify is how many bedrooms and how many bathrooms it has. The importance of the bathroom to prospective buyers goes beyond just quantity though. How you present the bathroom in a house on the market has come to play a crucial role in the success of a home sale!

As you stage your home for sale, you’ll likely be putting a lot of emphasis on the master bedroom and the living room to draw buyers in—but the bathroom is not to be overlooked. Many homes have modest to small sized bathrooms, but that’s okay! Use these strategies to make a small bathroom look and feel like the perfect place for your potential buyers to get a positive start to their day!

Clean everything.

A clean home is essential to a successful home sale, but the bathroom is an especially important area to keep tidy and sanitized. It’s hard to feel like you can get clean yourself in a space that’s already dirty.

Scrub the fixtures—bathtub, sink, toilet, etc.—until they shine like new! Clean the floor, walls, ceiling, windows, grout if you have tile, and doors as well. Water and humidity can cause some serious damage over time, so make sure you’re thoroughly cleaning all the nooks and crannies you can find.

Remove all personal items.

Don’t risk putting off potential buyers by leaving signs around of someone else using the bathroom—that’s not something they want to think about when they imagine it as their own. Store all shower supplies, hair styling tools, makeup, etc. somewhere else for the time being.

Eliminating this clutter will make your small bathroom look more spacious too. Cramming your soaps and shampoos along the side of the tub makes it look like there’s not enough room for them anywhere else.

Stick with neutral colors.

You want your towels, shower curtains, and rugs to blend in with the color scheme of the bathroom so they appear to take up less space. Add one or two pops of color to make it feel homey—a plant on the back of the toilet or the window sill is the perfect touch!

Neutral features also allow buyers to better envision their own style in the room and form an important connection with your home. Crisp white towels are also a nice touch to make the room as immaculate as a hotel bathroom.

Make it inviting.

Strategically using a few subtle décor accents will make a small bathroom feel cozy, rather than cramped. For example, a fresh coat of paint can do wonders for a tired bathroom, and a mirror on the wall across from the vanity can make the room appear larger. Slate blue-grey, light charcoal, pale grey, or gray-green hues all look great in bathrooms and make white tiles and accents pop!

Another good trick is to use high wattage light bulbs to brighten up the room and make it cheerful. The abundance of light bouncing through the room will give off the illusion of space as well.

At Red House Staging & Interiors, we use these and many other strategies to guarantee your home’s presentation is flawless when it comes time to show it off to potential buyers! We offer several individual service packages to choose from to meet the needs of your budget and your home. Call or visit our website today to learn more about what our team can do for you!

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Preparing your home for the market can be a long and tedious process. Home staging in particular can be especially challenging, so you might find yourself wondering if there are a few rooms you can skip. How important is it really to put your valuable time and effort into staging the dingy basement or the attic you never use?

You may not like it, but staging these auxiliary spaces is just as important as the rest of your home. So, the answer is; yes, you should always stage your attic! If you’re struggling to determine the best strategies for getting your attic ready for a showing, we know exactly where you should start.

Why does attic staging matter?

Before we give you the run down on how to stage your attic, it’s crucial for you to understand why the process is important. Recognizing the goal of attic staging will help you accomplish it more effectively. Home staging is a real estate tactic for making a house appeal to as many potential buyers as possible and increasing your chances at a valuable sale. This is exactly what you want to do with your attic—make it functional and attractive.

You never know what someone could be looking for in their search for a new home. Having an extra space to use as a home office, or plenty of storage for their surfboard collection could be a deal breaker. Staging your attic opens up possibilities for buyers that you might not see. Just because you wouldn’t up your offer for a clean, spacious attic, doesn’t mean your buyers won’t!

Where do I start when staging my attic?

The first step to staging an attic in any condition is to clean and declutter. Remove all excess belongings to make your attic looks spacious and roomy. Then, give it a good, thorough cleaning—scrub the floors, the walls, sweep away dust bunnies and wash the windows until they sparkle.

Unfinished Attics

The best approach to take with this type of space is to present it as a convenient storage area. At the very least, repaint the walls and touch up the floors. Replace any old carpets with easy laminate or other solid flooring. Throw your stuff in a storage unit, to open up as much usable space as possible, and add plenty of lighting to highlight the scope of the room.

Finished Attics

If your attic is already touched up and finished, simply stage it as an extra room! Give it a clear purpose to allow buyers to envision themselves using the space in a functional way. Turn it into a makeshift office, gym, craft space, or even a guest bedroom.

If you’re having trouble deciding what’s important when it comes to staging your supplementary spaces, leave it to the professionals. You don’t want to cost yourself a great offer because you didn’t know how to make your attic, basement, extra room, etc. appeal to the masses. Contact Red House Staging & Interiors today to find out how we can put our staging expertise to work for you and your home sale!

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Hanging art and décor is a fun way to fill up your wall space and add some personality to a room! There are a ton of different designs, styles, and layout options to choose from when incorporating wall art into your interior design.

You might think it’s as simple as getting a piece that matches the rest of your décor and throwing it up wherever it fits, but hanging art properly requires more strategy than that. We’ve decided to highlight the three most common mistakes people make when using wall décor. Take a look at what they are to make sure you’re not guilty of making them yourself!

1.) Choosing the wrong size.

When it comes to size, people tend to go too small with their wall art but missing the mark in either direction is a big interior design faux pas! An itty bitty piece of art floating awkwardly in a big space does not work well, making the room seem out of balance and proportion. Unless you are going to balance it out with a lot of additional art to fill the space, resist hanging a small piece of art anywhere but on a smaller section of wall.

Similarly, art that’s too big for a small wall will overwhelm the room and throw off the scale. A huge piece of art on a large wall can really work if it takes up proportional space, but watch out for hanging art that is too wide on a narrow wall—it leaves too much space on the top and bottom and not enough on the sides.

Hanging art that isn’t the right proportion for the wall will be a distraction—something that just doesn’t look right and turns off guests or potential buyers if you’re showing your home. Take the time to experiment with proportions before you buy your pieces. Hang a piece of paper that is cut to size and see what feels most comfortable in the space.

2.) Hanging art too high.

This is another common décor mishap that makes a room feel off. Hanging your wall pieces too high will throw off the atmosphere and symmetry of a room, even if it’s just a few inches. You want your wall art to be cohesive with your furniture, room shape, and ceiling height to establish harmony.

The center of your art installation should be placed roughly at eye level and so that you shouldn’t have to look up to see it while sitting. Since everybody’s eye level will differ depending on height, the magic number most interior designers will tell you is 57’’ from the floor. If you’re tall, hold up the piece at eye level and then come down a few inches and you’ll find the sweet spot. If you’re opting for a gallery wall of many pieces of art, use this guide to inform where the center of the installation is.

Ask yourself if your can view a piece comfortably while standing in front of it and use that as a guide to proper placement height.

3.) Using art that doesn’t flow.

A lot of people make the mistake of hanging wall art just because they have it. It’s important, however, to make sure each piece matches the style of the room. You wouldn’t throw a red ottoman into a living room with a cool blue color scheme just because you found it in the basement—don’t do it with your wall art either!

The nice thing about wall décor is that it’s easy to swap out and rotate as your tastes and fashion trends change! Switch things up by moving a couple pieces from your study into the den or bringing out some seasonal art throughout the year.

Wall art is a very powerful tool for determining the look and feel of each room, making it especially important when it comes to staging your home for prospective buyers. At Red House Staging & Interiors, we know exactly how to use that and other interior design elements to make the most of your space. Give us a call or visit our website today to learn more about what our elite staging services can do for your home sale!

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Mirrors are one of the most fun and useful tools an interior designer has in their arsenal. You can use them to control so many elements of a room that it almost seems like every one must be a magic mirror! Ranging from simple, pragmatic designs that serve their reflective function to ornate and elegant décor accents, a mirror makes a great addition to any space.

While mirrors do tend to be pretty versatile, there is a right and a wrong way to use them. You want them to make your home feel open and bright—not like you’re walking into a fun house! Luckily, we’re here to steer you in the right direction. Follow these tips to use a mirror to turn a room into a sparkling, airy space of possibilities!

1.) Don’t place a mirror just anywhere.

You can’t use a mirror as just another space filler like you would with any old inexpensive piece of wall art you can find at a home store. It needs to be placed thoughtfully in order to get the desired effect. If you don’t approach the installation of your mirror strategically, you’ll miss the mark on making the most out of what could potentially be a radiant piece of home décor.

Also make sure when you’re positioning your mirror that it doesn’t reflect any unappealing spots or features of the room. You don’t want to emphasize negative aspects of the room or its furnishings as these will be amplified by the mirror’s reflection. See below for more tips on how to be strategic with your mirror placement.

2.) Make it a focal point.

An opulent mirror is an excellent solution for a room with no natural focal point or obvious purpose. Have fun with unique shapes and lavish frames if you want a splash of eccentricity in your décor! Even a large, simple mirror will capture the eye and add drama to a room—almost like a refined piece of wall art. Just be sure not to place a mirror on more than one wall and overwhelm the space.

If the room already has a focal feature, use a mirror to exaggerate it. Place it over the mantel of a rustic fireplace in the den or behind the bed in the master bedroom.

3.) Use them to enhance your space.

Mirrors are one of a home stager’s go-to tools for making a room look bigger. Use them to double the amount of perceived space, transforming small rooms and narrow hallways.

The light that a mirror reflects throughout the room will give the illusion of depth and an expansive feel to the space. Play around with visuals to keep your home feeling interesting, friendly, and spacious. Consider using a large, leaning floor mirror to add depth to a small bedroom or dark hallway.

4.) Illuminate dark areas.

Speaking of light, a mirror is a great way to take advantage of both natural and artificial light and spread it across the room to spots that tend to stay in the shadows. Place one behind a lamp or next to a window to make the light bounce and bask the room in a welcoming glow. Or position it opposite from a window to reflect outdoor scenery and give the illusion of an additional window on another wall!

Strategically placing a mirror to optimize the light in a room is a great way to create a warm, bright atmosphere and establish some ambiance. Just remember that if you place a mirror where it will catch hours of direct sunlight that the sun can dull its reflective quality over time. If possible, position your mirror at an angle that catches the light but doesn’t bake the glass.

5.) Control the symmetry of a room.

The reflective qualities of a mirror make it ideal for framing the view of a room. Place a pair of mirrors around a doorway or window, for example, to reflect the room and create a sense of balance and harmony. Or, get creative with your positioning and use them to dictate an eclectic, more modern layout for a space!

If you’re trying to take advantage of the power of the mirror to make your home more appealing for buyers, we know how to help. Don’t risk botching a sale by overshadowing the best features of your house by using mirrors—or other furniture and décor—the wrong way!

At Red House Staging & Interiors, we’ll use our interior design and home staging experience to ensure potential buyers will only be able to see the most attractive qualities of your home. Visit our website or give us a call to learn more about our expert staging solutions so you can get started on finding the best mirrors to use in your brand-new space!

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Spring and summer are the busiest seasons for the real estate industry! Everyone wants to take advantage of the gorgeous weather and long days to find the right house for the next chapter of their lives. Besides, who wants to go through a big move in the winter?

If your house is on the market this summer, you should be making the most out of the seemingly endless sunny days just like your buyers are. Start by checking out these sizzling suggestions for turning your open house into a brilliant summer oasis!

1.) Keep it cool.

Make sure your open house guests are comfortable as they take in the enticing features and captivating room setups! Run the air conditioning throughout the day, turning it on before they arrive. You don’t want prospective buyers walking into a hot, stuffy house that’ll make them want to walk right back out.

A cool, refreshing environment is a great way to give buyers a good impression of your home and make them want to linger. If you have central AC, put it on auto so it doesn’t get too cold—and take the opportunity to show it off. If you’re not blessed with central air or a wall unit, flip on the ceiling fans and open the doors and windows. Let the sun and the breeze invite your open house guests to make an offer on your home!

2.) Offer refreshments.

This one should be a no brainer. Keep your guests hydrated and offer them an ice-cold water bottle right when they walk in. It’s the perfect way to greet prospective buyers and make them feel right at home—and want to stay for good. The summer heat can be very draining so it’s important to keep guests feeling rejuvenated and revitalized so they have the energy to see everything your home has to offer.

If you’re feeling especially welcoming, consider offering other beverages like lemonade, iced tea, and even juice boxes for the kids. One or two refreshing summer snacks wouldn’t be a bad touch either. Cut up some juicy watermelon or throw some berries in a bowl on the dining room table!

3.) Promote your home’s outdoor features.

Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of your home’s warm weather assets. Clean up the pool until it sparkles and stage your backyard patio or deck with some inviting, conversational furniture.

Giving potential buyers a tour of your yard will encourage them to envision themselves lounging on your cozy loveseat or taking a dip in the pool on a hot summer day! Just make sure you’re providing plenty of shade—like a patio umbrella or backyard awning—for them to relax in while they take in the charm of your outdoor property.

4.) Pay extra attention to your landscape.

If you’ve got a house on the market this summer, take extra care to water and tend to your grass and other flowers/greenery in your yard. You’ll want to prevent them from succumbing to the summer heat and boost your home’s curb appeal. Dead grass is not attractive to anybody!

Remember, your home’s exterior is the first impression guests of your open house will get of your home. Starting off on the wrong foot could set the tone for the entire showing and hold someone back from making an offer.

5.) Make it fun!

The summer months are all about kicking back and relaxing. Use this vibe to draw people to your home by throwing a fun summer shindig that doubles as an open house! A short, engaging party is a great way to build a connection between you and potential buyers and—most importantly—the buyers and your home.

Host a backyard or patio party to show off the space and enjoy the summer sun! Add some string lights to switch on around dusk for some ambiance and an elegant touch. Or, have a barbecue to get people talking about your home over some delicious food and play a little soft, relaxing summer music in the background.

No matter what time of year it is, you want everything in your home to be just right going on the market and into an open house. Red House Staging & Interiors can provide you with elite home staging services and a skilled team of individuals who are dedicated to bringing out and showing off the best of your home!

Contact us today to learn about how we can make your house bright and ready just in time for a summer open house!

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So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’re moving on to bigger and better—or smaller and easier—things. Congratulations! That’s a huge step to take that will usher in an exciting new phase of your life. But before you can put all of your energy into a brand-new home, you need to successfully sell the old one.

You know you need a real estate agent, an expert staging service, and some killer photos to draw in the buyers; but how can you be sure it’s the right time to list? Unfortunately like most things in life, the answer isn’t black and white.

The best time to put your house on the market is going to depend on a lot of very fluid factors. It’s all about where you are, what’s going on in your community, and even how you feel! Be sure to keep these elements in mind when you decide to make it official and list your house for sale.

What is the best season to sell in your local market?

The time of year is a remarkably significant factor in determining the success of your home sale. While the optimal selling season is certainly subjective to your specific location, spring through early summer is generally the ideal time for securing the quickest sale at the best price. This means you’ll want to spend the winter months prepping your house for the market.

Spring and early summer tend to be the most popular home-buying seasons because people want to shop in warmer weather, and the days are longer so they can fit more showings and open houses in during the daylight. Tax refunds are received in the spring, so buyers have a little more financial security in addition to the good weather. Families looking for a new home usually opt to start looking around this time because it will allow their children to finish out the school year in their current district, and then give them most of the summer to get adjusted to somewhere new.

While we always recommend consulting with a local agent to help you with determining the best season for your local market, you can also do some quick online research—resources like Zillow’s Owner Dashboard will be able to help estimate the best time to sell a house in your area. In Washington D.C. for example, homes sell about 6 days faster than average when listed between April 1st and April 15th, and for some reason Thursday is the best day of the week to do it.

What is the state of the current market?

The most important thing to consider when evaluating local real estate conditions is whether it is currently a seller’s or a buyer’s market. In a seller’s market, there are more buyers searching for houses than there are properties available—meaning a house is likely to sell faster, at full price, and garner multiple offers. A buyer’s market is the opposite—there are more people trying to sell houses than buyers looking for them, which often results in your house being on the market longer, selling below list price, and more concessions being made to the buyer. Obviously, during a seller’s market is the ideal time to list your home.

The state of the local job market is something else to be aware of as you plan to sell your home. If there is local job growth, then there will probably be more people seeking residence and transferring into the area. Lower mortgage rates and tax incentives offered by community, state, or the federal government are other elements to make note of that could lend an advantage to your sale.

Are you ready on a personal level?

Even if it’s the start of spring and your local real estate market is a seller’s dream, if you’re not ready to sell your home—emotionally and financially—then it’s not the right time to list. Before you sell your home, you need to sit down and decide for yourself or with your family whether it’s the right thing for everyone involved. If your heart isn’t in it, then there is no right time for a home sale.

Consider your current lifestyle; did you just get a raise at work? Did you just take a pay cut? Is your current residence feeling smaller after the birth of your new child? Are you and your spouse both retired and tired of the constant maintenance your house requires? Major life changes and events can often signal or result in the need for a new home—whether it’s more room you need, or a lower mortgage.

The state of your finances should, of course, be one of the first factors you consider when deciding to list your home for sale. If your house or your income has substantially increased in value, you might want to take advantage of those opportunities. If you’re starting to feel like your bank account is drowning in the cost of your home, it’s probably a good idea to downsize. Make sure you budget for the cost of selling as well—cleaning and staging services, fees and commission for a real estate agent, and any repairs you may need to make to ensure your home is in its best shape for the market.

Last, but certainly not least, be sure you’re emotionally prepared to say goodbye. You’ve made a lot of memories in your home, and chances are it has seen you through some major life and personal transformations. Letting go of a safe, reliable, and meaningful space like that can be difficult. Don’t rush yourself mentally or emotionally when it comes to selling your house. Be patient to ensure you’re truly ready to take this step.

If you’ve read through these considerations and checked off most everything on the list, then it’s time to set your home sale in motion! Make sure you didn’t forget any important steps in the preparation process either—like staging your home for prospective buyers.

In a buyer’s market quality staging is crucial to make your home stand out above the competition. In a seller’s market, quality staging helps you capture even more at the settlement table. You can’t go wrong with investing in staging, no matter the season!

If you need help determining whether you’re putting forth the best version of your house possible—give Red House Staging & Interiors a call. We will guarantee you the best results for whatever market you’re working with!

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Selling your home is an exciting, stressful, and delicate process. It’s important to do your research and take your time prepping for a home sale to ensure you come out of it with the best offer! Even if you’ve sold a house before, it’s easy to get caught up in the thrill of it all and overlook a couple of details that may not seem significant but end up being crucial to your selling experience.

Be sure to read through this list of some of the biggest and most frequent mistakes that people make when putting their home on the market, so you don’t end up doing the same!

Overestimating Your Home’s Value

This trap is easy to fall into if you don’t take your time and investigate the market. Do your best to be objective about it. It’s easy to be blinded by sentimental value and emotional attachment, but you have to remember that those things don’t translate to financial worth.

Don’t let your vision become clouded with wishful thinking and high expectations either. The price you have in mind for your home, or the profits you hope to walk away with, may not align with the actual fair market value of the property. You’ll want to determine your home’s worth primarily by comparing it to other homes in your area and on the market. Your real estate agent can help you with this, or there are plenty of online resources available to help you estimate the true value of your home.

Also be sure to keep in mind the assets your home boasts and lacks, your location, the condition of the property, and the status of the market.

Not Having Enough Showings

How is anyone going to know what your home has to offer or how hard you worked to make it gorgeous if you don’t give them the chance? A common mistake sellers make is not showing their house often enough, and not accommodating a wide range of buyers. Promoting your online listing on Facebook is great, but it’s not enough. Nobody is going to make an offer without seeing the property in person at least once.

Make time for as many interested potential buyers as possible, even when it’s inconvenient. If you’re about to sit down to dinner and your agent calls you asking if they can bring a couple by in an hour to tour the house, scarf down that food or wrap it up for tomorrow and haul the family to the diner a few blocks away. You never know when your future homeowner is going to walk through the door, so you need to provide as much opportunity as possible for that to happen.

Work with your agent to schedule showings and open houses as soon as your listing goes up. The longer a house sits on the market untouched, the less value it has. Make sure the pictures in your listing are of good quality and really showcase your home and its best features. Have plenty of photos for people to look through, taken with good lighting at optimal angles.

Choosing the Wrong Agent

The real estate agent you work with is going to make or break your home sale. Be sure to hire someone who is professional, experienced, and good at communicating openly. You don’t want to be left in the dark wondering if there’s been any interest in your home. Your realtor should be consulting you and bringing you along for every step of the process.

Choose someone who clearly cares about your sale. An agent needs to be your home’s biggest advocate, next to you. Someone who is invested wholeheartedly in how your sale turns out will do the work it takes to secure the best deal for you—and for them if they’re working on commission. Don’t hire someone just because they’re your friend’s sister or they tell a great joke when you interview them. You and your agent need to be able to agree on your strategy and what’s important and voice your concerns when you don’t.

When hiring an agent, be sure to do your research. Read online reviews or contact previous clients. Conduct in-depth interviews and double check licensing and certifications. Choose someone who knows and is experienced in your specific market. Somebody who doesn’t really know the location won’t be able to fully convey the value of your home and where it is.

Skipping the Staging

How you prepare and stage your home for sale will undoubtedly determine how successful it’ll be on the market. Start by cleaning and decluttering the entirety of the interior and exterior—and we mean a deep, thorough cleaning. Your buyers need to see your home as well-maintained and in good shape so they’re willing to spend more money knowing they’re getting a quality product.

Repair and refresh anything damaged or decrepit, like worn carpets, old paint, or a cracked wooden handrail. Stage each room of your home strategically to entice as many potential buyers as possible. Neutralize your furniture and décor for maximum universal appeal, leaving a few accents to give the room some character and make it feel homey—like a vase of flowers in the dining room, or a soft throw blanket folded over the back of the couch.

Take care to depersonalize the space as well, removing family photos and personal trinkets and touches you’ve added throughout the years. You want people to see themselves living in your space, and to do that they can’t see it as yours. The purpose of home staging is to set the scene for buyers and encourage them to build a connection to your home. It needs to look spacious, open, warm and welcoming. Invite them to imagine the possibilities your house has to offer them!

In fact, staging is so important to the sale of your home that you’ll want to consider hiring a professional. Red House Staging & Interiors offers distinct, budget-accommodating services by experienced and expert home stagers that, when combined with these tips, will see to it that your house flies on and off the market faster than you can get your packing peanuts!

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Okay, so your house is on the market and you’re preparing for a showing, making sure you’ve covered all your bases. Washed the floors? Check. Took down all personal photos? Check. Staged each room? Check. You’re all set to go, and you’ve done everything you can to present the best and most marketable version of your home possible, right? Wrong—you forgot about your outdoor space!

Taking the time to make your backyard as approachable and attractive as possible is just as crucial for securing a buyer as the interior staging process! After all, your home’s outdoor living space is just as much a part of your home as the living room or the kitchen; don’t let it fall to the wayside.

Use these tips and our superior staging solutions to make sure your prospective buyers are fully convinced that your house is their future home. As soon as they step into your expertly arranged backyard, they’ll already be planning their housewarming barbecue!

Clean it up

Start your outdoor staging process the same way you started your interior—with a deep cleaning! Don’t ruin all the hard work you put into shampooing your carpets and Lysoling your countertops with a chaotic backyard. An outdoor mess is just as off-putting as stained bedding would be in the master bedroom.

Remove dirt and dust from your patio, walkways, stairs and any furniture you may have. Be sure to get the cracks in the sidewalk leading up to your porch and the crevices of the window ledge. Hose down the concrete, or if you’re tackling years of grimy buildup, you’ll want to pressure wash those stubborn layers. Knock down cobwebs from your eaves and remove any dead plant growth from your garden beds. Replace your porch light fixtures with updated ones or at minimum, give your current ones a thorough cleaning.

Declutter your outdoor space by packing up any toys, gardening or landscaping tools, and anything else that tends to make its home on the lawn. Don’t just shove everything in the garage either, because your buyers will want to see that too!

Refine the landscaping

Break out the lawnmower, weed wacker, and the hedge trimmers, because landscape presentation is everything when it comes to creating a polished and inviting outdoor space. Weed the garden and yank out the dandelions growing in the walkway cracks. Use a fresh layer of mulch in your beds. You want potential buyers to view all aspects of your home as well-maintained and in tip top shape. Concentrate around your patio, garage, and fences.

Plant bushes and flower beds to liven up your backyard and add some character to the scenery. Spread new mulch over any tired looking area of dirt, adding in some greenery to fill in empty areas.

If you’re not a gardener, don’t worry! Use window boxes, planters, and potted plants on the porch and patio to infuse the space with an inviting, lush feel—even in the winter. Remember to aim for dense and energetic (stick with three colors!), but not overwhelming and crowded.

Furnish your backyard

Highlight the possibilities that a home with outdoor space offers to make your house stand out to prospective buyers. Furnish your patio, deck, porch, or any areas that allow you to naturally incorporate furniture and décor. Put out a bistro table and chairs with a vase of flowers on top, or if space allows, a patio dining table or a conversation set of a love seat and chairs!

Stage your space with neutral pieces—and a few pops of color via accent pillows and décor as well as pots of plants—so that buyers can envision their own style and project it onto your enticing setup. That means you’ll have to ditch the lawn gnomes and garden flags too.

If your backyard is mostly just lawn without a lot of concrete, you can still place a set of chairs with some accent pillows and an ottoman to show it off as a cozy spot to read. Or think about investing in a fire pit with a few chairs to show the potential of the yard for hanging out after dark. Be sure not to pack too much stuff in your outdoor space, as you want to leave enough room to emphasize the size of the yard and the opportunities that go along with it.

Staging your home is a comprehensive process, and it’s important to make sure you don’t miss any of the finer details—like creating a charming and eye-catching backyard space. Make the process ten times easier by hiring a reputable and experienced staging company to ensure every aspect of your home is well taken care of! Contact Red House Staging and Interiors today so we can get started on preparing your home for the market!

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Home staging is a widely used and respected strategy in the real estate industry. It’s recognized as a remarkably effective technique in selling a home in less time at a higher price. The concept may seem inherently logical now that it’s so commonly used on the market, but it wasn’t always that way!

Before the term, or even the idea of home staging was created, the closest practice we had was realtors who told their clients to keep their lawns mowed and their houses neat and clean. It took a lot of time, education, and effort to make staging as effective and well-known as it is today.

For those who are interested—or who may have thought a professional home stager’s training consisted of nothing more than a few interior design classes and a natural sense of style—check out this informal overview of how home staging came to be!

The Mother of Home Staging

In the early 1970s, interior designer Barbara Schwarz decided to switch gears career-wise and try her hand at real estate. As she began her work, Barbara soon came to two realizations: it is very challenging to make suggestions on how to better market a home without offending the seller, and well-presented homes sell faster and at a greater value.

Barbara’s background in theatre gave her a unique perspective as a real estate agent, and she saw the presentation of a home as the process of setting the scene—or stage—for prospective buyers to become invested. Introducing the concept to clients as a technique for enticing buyers to build an emotional connection that will compel them to buy, takes the emotional response that may result from offering suggestions and objective evaluation out of the equation.

The idea behind home staging redefines the message realtors communicate to sellers about their personal tastes; it’s not about inadequate or unappealing style, it’s about painting a picture for potential buyers.

Spreading the Word

Barbara recognized right away that the theory and practice of home staging was revolutionary for the real estate industry. She set to work educating professional realtors and interior designers around the country and introducing her methods through touring and resource development.

The first website ever created exclusively for staging was Stagedhomes.com, and is still recognized as one of the leading sources of education in the field. Through the website, Barbara developed a professional course to earn a certification as an Accredited Staging Professional (ASP) and master the art of staging a home.

The concept became particularly popular in the U.S. during the recession, when real estate became a buyer’s market and the competition for making a sale was significant. Sellers and realtors found themselves needing a new and effective way to distinguish their houses on the overflowing market, and so they turned to home staging—and discovered just how powerful it was in practice.

The International Association of Home Staging Professionals

The IAHSP was one of the first primary vehicles through which home staging was able to permeate the real estate and interior design industries. Established again by Barbara, the organization exists to provide guidance and resources for home staging professionals and those who are interested in becoming one.

There are thousands of members around the world, and through conferences and online resources the association puts forth and helps to define a standard for home staging.

The Real Estate Staging Association

A little after the inception of IAHSP, another organized group emerged for home stagers called the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA). They are another leading force in the pool of staging resources, established to help advance home stagers of any training level and designation and encourage excellence and professionalism.

RESA is the first independent trade association in the real estate staging industry, and their goal is to continue to set and uphold home staging standards and encourage growth in and of the staging community.

The founder of Red House Staging & Interiors is herself a graduate of the 2005 staging training class offered by Stagedhomes.com and has previously been a member of both organizations over the years. In the 13 years we have been in business, we have created our own aesthetic and set industry standards, helping to define the high quality of staging that now exists in the Mid-Atlantic region of the US.

If you’re looking for someone to put the proven strategy of staging to work for you, look no further than Red House Staging & Interiors. As one of the region’s—if not the country’s—largest and most reputable staging companies, we offer you staging solutions developed with and supported by our years of experience successfully staging homes for sale in the D.C. area!

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