Staging can get really spendy and not all sellers want to go that route with professional stagers. Most do a little on their own. Even then it can start to add up but here are 5 pretty inexpensive tricks to use that really don't take a lot of effort either.
Start Packing - You're going to do it anyway. Pack up at least half the items in cupboards, pantries, closets, drawers, and anywhere else you have storage. This will instantly make the room and house feel more open, clean and decluttered. I'm even talking about furniture here. Sometimes rooms have just too much furniture. If you have a coffee table, sofa table, 3 chairs, a couch, a loveseat, and plants in your living room, it's time to pare down a little. You don't want the real estate photos to look crowded and distracting. A couple well-placed seats and a table is usually all you'll need.
Get Rid of Excess clutter - Wait, I thought you just told us to do that? Well, sort of. You'll want to pack up any memorabilia, collections, personal photos or items that really don't appeal to a wide range of home buyers. Think that goofy clock hanging in the bathroom or your baseball collection or maybe a teacup collection in a sideboard in the dining room. Maybe the whole sideboard needs to go for a free-flowing room. And please, if you have a collection of dolls gracing the upstairs guest room, it's time to lovingly tuck them away... I mean, they are dolls...
Time to Paint? I say this with a question mark because maybe you don't need to paint. But if you have a bright blue bathroom, a hot-pink teenage girls room, and a licorice black den, it's time to find the happy balance in color for these rooms. You don't have to go all white but a nice beige, tan, or warm latte color is usually the best options. It neutralizes a room and makes it easier for buyers to see the house instead of the "things" in the house.
Check your Sniffer - Does the house smell? You probably don't even know. You've become nose-blind to it, so get a trusted friend or even your Portland real estate agent to take a quick sniff. If you have pets, people can usually tell. Smoker in the house? Time to deodorize and if there is a musty smell, buyers think mold and Cha-Ching$$! Time to get things cleaned up and smelling amazing.
Stage to the Curb - Also called curb appeal, this is the one thing many homeowners neglect. The inside looks spectacular but if the outside is a shambles, no one will make it past the front door. Take the time to trim, weed, edge, mow, green up the lawn and pressure wash stairs, steps, driveways or sidewalks. Make it sparkle.
Okay, so maybe you have to put just a little effort into these things but we really didn't buy anything extra, except maybe a paint can or two. You have the power to do this but it does take some time to perfect that staging. And, if you have any questions about what to do with a room, ask your Realtor®. We've seen it all and can certainly advise on what to do.