What makes the difference between a home that sells quickly and one that sits on the market for months? If all other factors, like location and pricing, are similar, then the answer is likely staging. A home that is staged well shows well and draws in potential buyers, while a home that is not staged well will struggle to show and sell.
When selling a luxury home, specifically, staging is critical. A high-end homebuyer has a unique desire and perspective, and the staging strategies for these homes are different than for average homes. It's important that the home is staged to be appealing without actually looking as though it has been staged.
At the Mark Lee Team, our staging experts and our relationships with interior designers can help you transform your home through careful and subtle staging, so it shows well and has a better chance of selling quickly and for a good price. In addition to talking to your real estate agent and partnering with these designers, consider these steps for staging your luxury home.
Stick to Neutral Paint Colors
One of the key factors in staging is neutrality. Buyers need to feel as though they are walking into a home that fits them, not one tailored to your needs. As much as you love that red pepper wall, you need to opt for a more neutral paint scheme.
White or gray neutrals in soft, subtle hues create a natural backdrop that lets the home's best features shine. Painting your home in a neutral color will allow your space to appeal to a wider number of buyers.
Create a Relaxing Setting
Throughout the home, emphasize the comfort it affords. Features like quality, plush bed linens and bedroom accessories that look soft will help people feel like they could curl up comfortably in the home. In the bathrooms, roll Egyptian cotton towels to place in the room and hang plush robes in the space. Use candles and spa-inspired accessories to make the bathrooms feel luxurious and relaxing.
Throughout the home, not just in the bedrooms and baths, use accessories to create a subtle personal touch. The right accessories make the home looked like it was carefully cultivated to achieve a certain look, rather than staged and fake. Whenever investing in accessories, emphasize comfort. Lush rugs, for instance, are a comfortable and welcoming addition. Add throw pillows and blankets to chairs and sofas to accentuate them, as these particular items are considered very comfortable.
Sell the Lifestyle
Buyers who are shopping for a luxury home are shopping for a lifestyle in addition to a home, so accentuate the lifestyle afforded by the property. Is it a waterfront property? Then decorate with water-inspired art. Does the home have a breathtaking view of the sunset or the water? Use outdoor furniture to draw the eye to that feature of the home. Is the home in a historic community? Highlight this lifestyle with vintage decor. Remember, you're selling more than just a home.
Get Rid of Clutter
Clutter must disappear when staging your home. To begin, find the family photos and other family-specific mementos, like artwork your kids or grandkids created, and pack it away. Next, go into the kitchen and bathrooms and clear everything possible from the countertops, except for a few decorative items. Finally, clean out closets, cabinets and draws, pairing them down to just the essentials. You want to aim for 20 percent of your closets to be free and open space, as this makes buyers feel that the home has ample storage.
Beware of Strong Smells
While your home is on the market, be careful what you cook. Lingering smells can deter buyers, and you never know when an agent is going to call with a perspective buyer requesting a showing.
Next, consider day-to-day smells that you may no longer notice. In addition to cooking odors, you need to consider pet odors, tobacco smoke smells and even the smell of air fresheners and products you use regularly. You may be used to these smells, but buyers will notice them right away, and buyers of luxury homes want a home that appears clean, including the smell.
If you have an odor problem, have the carpets cleaned and walls painted to help. Then, air out the home, especially before showings, by opening the windows. Finally, consider fresh flowers or plants that can cover odors. You can also use candles in fairly neutral scents to make the home smell great.
In the luxury home market, original artwork can make the home stand out. Find a local artist to create a piece that fits your home specifically. With a custom piece, you may even have a bargaining chip, offering the art with the home. Custom art makes the space feel more luxurious as well, which can help sell the lifestyle.
Brighten the Space Up
The more light a space has, the larger it will feel. Luxury homes need to feel larger than life, and light can be the key to this. When showing your home, open the shades and turn on all the lights. Consider upgrading to higher watt bulbs and adding floor plans or other lights to dark corners. Use lighting to highlight the home's best features.
Refresh the Kitchen
Luxury homes need luxury kitchens, and this is where you can spend a little time or money. Upgrade outdated appliances and invest in at least one new high-end piece, like a cook top, stove or refrigerator. Studies have shown that home sellers recoup almost every cent they spend on appliances, so don't be afraid of this investment. If you are going to remodel the kitchen, choose materials with a universal appeal, keeping the neutral palette in mind.
Don't Overcrowd Rooms
Don't pack too much furniture into any one room in your home. Even if it fits, it will make the room feel small and cramped. This is an area where a staging company can really help. The experts at the Mark Lee Team can help you arrange your furniture for optimal showing power. Remember to create a natural flow that guides buyers through the home organically.
Organize the Garage Space
Finally, move into the garage. Luxury homebuyers are likely luxury car owners, and you need to show a well-appointed, organized and even decorated garage space. Paint the walls and ceilings, seal the floors and organize the storage space. If you have old shelving or cabinets in the garage, replace them with a more contemporary option. Finally, make sure that the home's garage shows enough space for the number of cars advertised in the listing. If it's listed as a three-car garage, for instance, don't pack one bay with stuff. Make sure it clearly shows that three cars can pull in to the garage.
Are you looking to sell your luxury home? The Mark Lee Team is the Pensacola area's top real estate team with over $70,000,000 closed in 2016. Our professional team and resources ensure you the best home buying and selling experience. Contact us at (850) 261-1996 or firstname.lastname@example.org.