Home Sellers: Get More Money By Staging your Home

By: Kris Kombrink

We've all seen those television shows where someone comes in, moves a couple pieces of furniture around, and suddenly the seller's home is worth thousands more. Well, it's not as easy as it may look on TV.

There are, however, certain things you can do to stage your home that will bring a better return. Here are 10 easy changes you can make to bring in higher offers from potential home buyers.

Clear out your closets and any clutter. Consider holding a yard sale, or better yet, donate your unwanted household goods to charity.

Pack up extra toys, linens, small kitchen appliances and the like and store them offsite, or in the garage.

Be sure your trees are trimmed, shrubs are pruned and the lawn is mowed and watered regularly. Turn on sprinklers for a few minutes about 30 minutes before a showing or open house. It will make the lawn and driveway sparkle!

Refrain from cooking anything that leaves a distinctive odor (fish, garlic, cabbage) and from introducing any other unappealing odors into the home.

Think about having a professional service clean the home, including windows and carpets.

Set the dining room table with attractive linens, dishes and stemware.

As trite as it may sound, serve cookies and coffee; people will linger in the home longer.

Arrange some fresh flowers throughout your home and have a fire in the fireplace in fall and winter.

Add extra lighting in dark rooms or corners, and turn on the lights when the home is shown.

Remove stacks of magazines, ashtrays, sports trophies, family photographs and other distractions.

Even though a lot of these may be common sense, it pays to be reminded. These few simple things can make a huge difference when a potential buyer tries to justify the price of your home.

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