Preparing your home for sale can stretch your budget, especially if you want to maximize your sale price however, not everyone has an unlimited pool of money to draw from. By the time you complete unfinished projects, undertake repairs, spruce up your outdoor spaces and allocate money to the unexpected things that happen along the way, there may not be much left in the money pot, and certainly not enough to call in the experts to style your home professionally.
Home staging has increased in prevalence substantially in recent years and if you want your home to stand out in the crowd, presentation is now more important than ever.
Here’s a few tips on what expert home stagers will do, and some suggestions on how you can achieve this yourself, all on a shoestring budget.
Rugs, Cushions and Throws
These decorator items make a huge impact in your living space and using a range of textures and colours will create a professional look. Start with a rug; whether over carpet for additional softness, or on floorboards/tiles to add warmth to a room, a quality rug that enhances your décor will have an immediate impact. Cushions and throw rugs will dress up even the most tired of couches, and these can be mixed and matched to create further impact by creating an inviting place that people will imagine themselves relaxing in.
Decorate the Walls
As part of your initial preparations, you will go through a de-cluttering phase, and most agents will suggest you to take down personal photographs to make the space more neutral. This is likely to leave you with some blank walls, so you will need to source artwork to fill the void. Most people imagine this will be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. There are many online stores that offer reasonably priced prints in black, white or timber frames. Alternatively, there are numerous sites that have free stock image libraries, so choose an image you like and have it printed; you can then frame it yourself. Try to choose artwork in colours that complement the decorator items in your room. Alternatively, mirrors are a great option for the wall, bringing in additional light and make smaller spaces look larger. If you simply can’t stretch your budget then you may be able to borrow from friends or relatives.
Well-placed lamps throughout your home have a two-pronged effect. They add another element to your décor, and they help create additional light, which can potentially be a major selling point for your home. Floor lamps are great to fill an empty corner whilst table/bedside lamps act as additional decorator items and help add to the ambience to a room.
Keeping it Green
Plants and greenery are a wise investment and best of all you can take them with you when you move. Whilst fresh flowers have been on the weekly purchase list of most vendors in the past, the current trend has moved away from this with plants being used through the sales campaign. Flowers, whilst beautiful, need to be refreshed at least weekly to have the desired affect and this becomes expensive over time. Australian native flowers are a great alternative as they have a lengthier shelf life. Greenery can be used anywhere in the home; living areas, kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms, finishing off a space perfectly, and adding a feeling of calm. As a society, we spend more time indoors now than ever before, so it is important for people to feel that your home is an abode they feel welcomed in.
Become a Bargain Hunter
If you have a little time on your side, you can search thrift shops, eBay, and Buy, Swap and Sell sites which can all be rich with treasures when trying to stick to a smaller budget. Likewise, places such as Kmart and Target have some contemporary furniture and homewares available at a fraction of what you might pay at other retailers. If you’re someone who swears by Ikea’s Scandinavian based ranges, just make sure you allow yourself plenty of time to construct anything you buy; this is not a good time to lose the Allen key.
Friends who Care
It’s common that when you’re getting your home ready to take to market, you’ll have friends reaching out and asking if they can help. We all have that one friend; you know, the one who is effortlessly stylish and rotates the looks in their home as often as you change your bedlinen. This is the time to ask them for help in styling your place, and if they offer to lend you decorator items that they’re currently ‘resting’, accept with good grace.
Creating the right look is all about balance; you can get away with cheaper pieces if they’re cleverly mixed with one or 2 quality items. Look at pictures of other homes online to get inspiration; see how experts mix and match colour and texture, and how they arrange smaller items on benches, coffee tables and surfaces for an understated, yet effective look. Then set about styling your own space; who knows, you might just find a new passion whilst you’re at it.