Staging Your Home

Staging Vs. Decorating

A well decorated home doesn't always translate well when it come time to sell your home. It is important to know the difference.


If you ask the average person what “home staging” is, they’re likely to say something like “decorating a house to make it look good.” The truth is that home staging is absolutely not the same thing as decorating.


Decorating one’s home is personal. The décor you create is based on your personality and your taste. Decorating a home is the process of turning a house (the physical building) into a home. And not just any home—your home.


Staging, on the other hand, is the opposite of personal. Staging is about highlighting possibility. It’s about showing a prospective buyer the potential of the home. And it’s about making the home as appealing as possible to anyone, not one specific person. The reason should be obvious—it’s a mistake to stage a home with a particular style because not every prospective buyer will appreciate that style.


The goal of staging is to bring out the potential of a home while staying as neutral as possible—so that each prospective buyer can imagine the home as they would decorate it.


Specifically, that means:

  • Choose neutral colors. Bold, distinctive colors won’t appeal to everyone. Keep it neutral and let the buyer imagine the home painted in whatever colors they would like.


  • Take down family photos and art. You want potential buyers to envision themselves owning the home—and it’s hard to do that with pictures of someone else’s family all over the wall. And anything but the most neutral, “vanilla” art is injecting too much “personality” into the décor.


  • Get rid of clutter—even if that means putting furniture in storage. When you’re trying to showcase the potential of a home, the last thing you want is clutter everywhere. Give the prospective buyers the space they need to visualize the home as they would decorate it.


There’s a world of difference between staging a home and decorating it.


The Payne-Cook Team will provide constructive tips for effective home staging. In some cases a professional stager will be recommended.

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