I like to think of staging as the finishing touch on a job well done with my house remodels. When I buy houses, they’re almost always wrecked. There’ll be rotted floorboards, destroyed bathrooms, and even graffiti inside and out. Then within a few weeks of hard work, I have a beautifully rehabbed house that almost anyone would love living in. Staging just gives it that extra bit of class to show buyers what they could be enjoying if they buy the house.
I usually recommend that real estate investors hire professional stagers, as you don’t necessarily want to strip your own house of furniture and décor every time you need to sell a flip house. That said, while I do love what professional house stagers can do, I also think there is quite a bit you can do on your own as well. I implement the following tips in every house that I remodel.
Stick to Neutral Colors
You never know who’s going to walk through the front door of your flip house. That’s why I always stick with neutral colors that appeal to a wide variety of people and that aren’t overly associated with men or women. Whether I’m selling to a single businesswoman, a couple, or a family, I want them to all be able to imagine their own stuff in the space. That’s why neutral colors work really well.
Splurge on Lighting
Don’t rely on the lights that you’ve installed in the house to brighten up the mood. Bring in some lamps and place them around each room in natural ways that work with the décor. Dark rooms look small and uninviting. Rooms with a lot of light look larger, more open, and more welcoming.
Make Sure Nothing Interrupts the Flow of the Tour
Before your open house, take a walk through the house as if you were a potential buyer touring the property. Are there any obstructions? Does a piece of furniture stick out too much into a passageway? Does a decorative piece overwhelm a particular space, attracting so much attention to itself that it’ll detract from the room? Make sure that you move any furniture that’s in the way and remove any pieces that don’t work.
Empty Rooms Don’t Sell Houses
You might be wondering why it’s so important to stage a flip house. After all, you want the space to appear as big as possible, right? I’ve talked to a few new house flippers who have this idea that putting furniture in a space will make it look smaller, but that really isn’t the case. Staging, and especially placing furniture, gives buyers a feel for the actual size of a room, and empty rooms don’t look big and expansive—they look cavernous and sad. So, while less is more, no furniture is a bad idea.
With these four tips, you’ll be able to beautifully stage any flip house when you’re ready to sell. You may not be able to have it staged for every potential buyer after your open house, but if you stage it right, you’ll most likely get offers on it that same day. Remember to pay attention to the details, make sure that everything is simple but bright and that nothing obstructs the flow of the property, and you’ll have a great setting for your next open house.