Charlie Peterson
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  Charlie's Monthly Column

Staging Your Home For Sale - Is It Worth The Investment?

For the past three months the average selling price of a staged home was 19% above the listing price while the unstaged home was only 15%. The 4% difference more than paid the staging cost.

Here are the ten secrets fo selling from Marelen Wharmby, a successful home stager:


  • Freshen up the home by painting walls a light, neutral color, such as antique white. Lighter colors appeal to a wider range of buyers and make each room look larger.

  • Take a close look at the floor coverings in each room. If you have hardwood floors under the carpet, you will always make money by removing it, even if the floor is not in perfect condition.

  • Allow as much light as possible to enter the room. Open up or remove all draperies, blinds, shades or other window coverings.

  • Removing the clutter of everyday life - all utilitarian items, stacks of paperworks, toiletries, kitchen utensils, electronic equipment and television sets.

  • Remove furniture from each room that does not go with the decor, such as items that stand out too much and items that are worn or of an unappealing color.

  • Place the remaining room furnishings in a way that makes best use of the character of the space. A room should be balanced so that people do not focus on one particular piece of furniture.

  • Now that you've removed the clutter from your home, adding some nice but inexpensive accessories will greatly elevate the perceived value of the home.

  • Clean, clean, clean. Every crevasse within the home should be spotless and gleaming. Even your normal weekly cleaning can not come close to the quality of clean you need.

  • You can't over spend on fresh plants and orchids, elaborate floral arrangements and landscape plants. All these provide a strong addition to the ambience you want to create.

  • Go on vacation! The houses that sell for much higher prices are homes that do not have the slightly disheveled look which comes with showering in the morning and cooking dinner in the evening. Being gone also will lower your level of stress and make the house easier to sell. Think of it this way: Your vacation will actually make you money.