As home stagers, we are often accused of staging the personality out of a house. In the 1980s when home staging first came to the UK from our friends across the water, the trend was for neutral floors, neutral walls and generally neutral taste throughout. Bland and boring was definitely the order of the day, though when you think about the décor in those days – peach bathroom suites and flowery borders everywhere – perhaps it’s understandable!
However, home staging has moved on. It’s far more sophisticated these days, and having a home with personality definitely doesn’t have to mean it’s ‘unsellable’.
Here are my top DOs and DON’Ts for home staging in the 21st Century:
DON’T just paint every wall Magnolia – choose a sophisticated colour palette with different but complementary shades for each room.
DO clear away anything you wouldn’t see in a show home: toys, pet paraphernalia, laundry, coats and shoes, all need to be put away out of sight.
DON’T have carpet in your bathroom – the 21st Century buyer won’t be impressed!
DO replace any carpet in high traffic areas that is over 10 years old, or 5 years if you have pets and children.
DON’T choose patterned carpets – this is one area where boring is best!
DO shop for modern accessories like lamps, vases and ornaments from a well-known brand like Next or John Lewis, to ensure quality and good taste.
DON’T keep your collection of teapots, fluffy toys or scarily realistic dolls on display. Time to pack them away for your (hopefully) forthcoming move.
DO set the dining room and kitchen tables using dining sets, good glasses, flowers and mats.
DON’T be afraid to use colour, but stick to an overall colour palette for the whole house, with different shades and accents in each area.
DO be careful with strong colours and prints: they can be a bit overwhelming. Best to keep them to small items like cushions, rugs or throws.
DON’T forget the bathroom when you stage – fill it full of special toiletries and hide away the Pantene, the Colgate and the half-worn soap
DO visit your local show homes for more ideas for staging in the 21st Century, and browse through Pinterest, which is a fabulous free source of inspiration. You can even create your own boards to keep your ideas together in one place.
If you’d like my help to sell your home more effectively, please answer a few short questions here and if I think I can help you, I’ll be in touch.