Gone are the days when a Manhattan apartment festooned with dated wallpaper and covered in plastic toys would fetch top dollar.

New York City real estate is experiencing a rare downturn, and homeowners and landlords who want their properties to sell quickly need to make sure their properties are flawless when they come on the market. 

Enter the stager!

Home staging experts work hard to make sure that your home appeals to the largest possible pool of buyers.

This may include rearranging or replacing furniture, eradicating clutter, modernizing decor or completely overhauling the look of a home.  Well-known realtor Barbara Corcoran recently stated that a staging a home can increase the sales price by 5 to 20 percent!  While hiring a stager might be a worthwhile investment, there’s plenty you can do on your own. 

You can avoid the high priced fees  for home staging services by employing our simple home staging steps.

Here are some of the basics:

1. Declutter, Declutter, Declutter: 

Staging a home properly involves way more than just making sure a coffee table is clear of magazines.

Most home stager professionals will recommend that you remove almost ALL of your personal objects from a home. Toys, CDs, videos etc. should be hidden inside closed storage and not on open shelving. All table tops, counter tops, book case tops, dresser tops etc. should be almost entirely clear. Furniture should be minimal – less is also more because a room will look larger with fewer pieces inside. 

Thinking you can stuff all the knick knacks into the closet? Think again!

Professional stagers also recommend that every drawer and closet be decluttered until they are only about half full. This means that you will need to pare down on kitchen supplies, and store all of your out of season clothing and sports gear while your house is on the market. 

2. Edit your space.

Now that all the clutter is gone, take a look at the larger items that are left. Are they all necessary? If an end table is interfering with traffic flow or the mixer is eating up half the counter, it should probably go into storage too.

3. Rearrange What’s Left

In New York, it’s common to use a dining room for an office or a corner of a bedroom for a gym, but that’s a no-no when you put your home up for sale.

Each room should have a clear function so that potential buyers can picture how the space is intended to be used. Rooms should also be arranged so that traffic can flow easily through the space. A good floor plan will also help important focal points “pop” like a fireplace or a great view. 

4. Clean Top to Bottom and Add Finishing Touches

Windows should sparkle, ovens should shine inside and out.  Don’t forget to hide the ant traps and anything else that might put off a buyer. Neutralize your decor so that anything controversial like your vintage troll collection won’t detract from the apartment itself. Don’t forget to repair everything as well – faucets should not drip, cupboards should close, etc.

Add some nice touches like fresh flowers and good lighting and you are ready for the open house. 

 Follow these simple steps to home staging and you will be positioned to sell your home in no time.

Of course,  you don’t need to move in order to stage your home! Today many people are “staging” their homes so that they can enjoy the benefits of a clean, clutter free space BEFORE they move.

Great idea!