6 Ways to Stage Your Santa Cruz House on a Budget

6 Ways to Stage Your Santa Cruz House on a Budget

Staging is a species of visual merchandising that draws on the principles of interior design. And you need to do it because it works. Numerous studies have shown that staged homes sell faster and at better prices than those that haven’t been staged. But professional staging is out of financial reach for many sellers. If that’s where you are, then check out these 6 ways to stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget.

1. Declutter First

Whether you plan to stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget yourself or spend big bucks for professional staging, it all begins the same way – with decluttering. No matter how strategically you’ve placed all that nice new furniture, it won’t help if you don’t clear all the junk out of the way. So the first step is “to declutter and organize every nook and cranny of your house. That means rooms, closets, pantries, and cabinets.” 

“Chances are good that serious potential buyers will open cabinets and closets to assess a home’s space and storage situation. Prepare for the tour by eliminating all clutter from surfaces around the house. When staging your closets, [leave] 20 to 30 percent of the space open and empty, so that buyers can visualize what it will look like once your belongings are gone. If you have nice floors, show them off by removing unnecessary rugs and mats off the floor.” 

2. Paint Those Walls

The next step toward full-blown staging is to paint the walls. But the colors are hugely important.

Your job is to create a blank-palette effect so that potential buyers will be able to envision your house as their home and imagine all their belongings in place. And that begins with painting in neutral colors.

So when it comes to the painting step of staging your Santa Cruz house on a budget, here’s what the pros say: “Remember that time your 10-year-old daughter insisted on painting her room hot pink? Now would be a good time to undo that. Before selling your home, [paint] your rooms a neutral color. Stick with a grey and beige palette (also referred to as “greige” by decorators) to appeal to the general public.”

3. Make It Smell Good

And keep in mind that when you stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget, you still have to appeal to all the senses to create the best impact. So make sure your house not only looks good but also smells good.

“Make a good first impression on buyers by ensuring your house smells fresh and clean. Potential buyers who walk into a house smelling of last night’s roasted brussels sprouts or closet mothballs will probably not be making an offer on your home anytime soon. After all, who would want to inherit a stinky house? If you have pets, make sure to eliminate odors from your home by washing dog beds and refreshing Fluffy’s kitty litter. Neutralizing candles, air fresheners, and diffusers are all inexpensive ways to improve your home’s scent.”

4. Depersonalize

Another way to create that blank-palette effect we mentioned earlier is by depersonalizing your house, which is an important aspect of staging your Santa Cruz house on a budget. Here’s what you can do . . . 

“When staging, cut down on clutter by putting away personal photos and picture frames scattered throughout your home. Not only are pictures distracting for potential buyers, but they could also make your house look downright messy. Surfaces, such as desks, bookshelves, and tables should be free of pictures. However, to make your home feel ‘lived-in,’ [leave] a few (three or so) appropriate family photos on display in your home.”

5. Define Rooms

Whether you stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget or not, defining rooms will always be important.

Basically, this means ensuring that each has “a single, defined purpose” that is immediately obvious to potential buyers and that “every space within each room has a purpose.”

To this end, you could, for example, turn your finished basement into an entertainment room. It doesn’t matter that a buyer won’t want to use the basement for this purpose. “[T]he important thing is for them to see that every inch of the home is usable space.”

Consult your Santa Cruz agent at 831-588-2334 for more ideas along these lines.

6. Don’t Over-Stage

And, finally, don’t overdo the staging. Even when you stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget, it’s always a temptation.

“Don’t get carried away when staging your home. Going overboard with anything, even flowers or decor can be a mistake. After all, you don’t want potential buyers to get so distracted with what’s in your home that they forget to look around at the home.” Try to strike a balance between a perfectly staged look and a lived-in look. 

Talk to Your Santa Cruz Agent 

Staging on a budget can be done, and it may help you sell your house faster and for a better price – especially with some tips from your local Santa Cruz agent. To learn more about how to stage your Santa Cruz house on a budget and reap the benefits, contact us today at 831-588-2334.

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