5 Tips for Staging Your Home on a Budget

Staged kitchen.First impressions are everything, whether you’re viewing a house, test-driving a car or meeting your daughter’s prom date. That’s why an entire industry has developed around staging homes to help them sell.

Staging simply means making a house look its best, and can include anything from deep-cleaning the carpet to renting furniture that’s much nicer than your own. And since hiring a professional stager won’t fit in most budgets, here are five affordable ways to make your house more marketable.

1. Reduce clutter

You can’t change the square footage of you home (not cheaply anyway), but you can make it look and feel larger. Remove everything but furniture, fixtures and decor that improve the look of a room. Getting rid of extra clutter is also good excuse to start packing your belongings for the upcoming move.

2. Open curtains

Letting in sunshine will improve the look of just about any space. It’ll make the rooms of your home seem open, fresh and clean. And if it’s a nice day, open the windows as well to let in a gentle breeze.

3. Mind the bathroom and kitchen

These two rooms are scrutinized by homebuyers more than any others. Spend extra time cleaning sinks, tile, grout, shower doors, backsplashes and appliances. Making these areas shine will go a long way toward making your home attractive to buyers.

4. Consider the lighting

A clean, spacious house is wasted unless it’s well-lit. Use a combination of ambient, task and accent light to make the rooms in your home glow. If you’re not sure where to start, use this lighting guide from Real Simple for a few pro tips.

5. Don’t forget the yard

Homebuyers will judge a book by its cover. Remember to mow the grass, trim the hedges, rake the leaves and take care of any necessary lawn maintenance. A clean, well-kept yard creates a great first impression.

Do you have any cheap DIY home staging tips or tricks? What about baking cookies or painting rooms neutral tones? Let us know in the comments below.