Staging your home for sale

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When it comes to selling your home nowadays, it’s all about staging. When buyers are looking for a home, they want to see something clean and simple. They want to be able to imagine themselves living there, and that’s hard to do when all they can see is someone’s else’s home. You want the buyer to be able to picture it as their own.

Most buyers shop for homes online these days, and the most important part of online shopping is the pictures. If the home isn’t eye-catching in the photos, the buyer is a lot less likely to want to see it in person. If the photos are blurry or the furniture is outdate or the rooms cluttered, they’ll bypass your home for someone else’s, even if you’re charging $2,000 less.

Staging can range from a fresh paint job and a quick declutter to a complete transformation. Modern, simple furniture. A clean layout. Any upgrades will help you sell your home. Taking down outdated wallpaper, fixing the broken dishwasher, upgrading the counters and cabinets, maybe even going as far as ripping out that old carpeting. The more you put into staging, the greater return you’ll get, btut it doesn’t always have to be that complicated.

The easiest way to stage is to declutter. Removing all the framed family photos and replacing them with simple artwork. A throw blanket and some decorative pillows on the living room couch. Painting over the bright blue walls with something neutral. Putting all the kid’s toys in bins. Packing up the collection of Star Wars figurines and replacing them with simple accessories and maybe a house plant.

The current condition of the home definitely affects with how much you are going to spend staging the house. A newer home with less wear and tear isn’t going to need as much work as a house that was last re-done in the 1980s. But don’t let that scare you. The return is worth it.

You don’t usually need to stage every single room in the house. Staging is mostly effective in a few key rooms. Probably most important is the living room as well as the master bedroom and the kitchen. The living room is where a buyer is going to picture themselves relaxing and spending time with family. Typically, the master bedroom will be used by the buyer, so they want to see something cozy and comfortable. As for the kitchen, well, everyone wants a nice kitchen: a place where you can see yourself cooking and spending time with company.

It can seem like a lot, but it’s really simple and has such a great return. The number of offers you receive will increase along with your profits. The property is less likely to sit on the market, resulting in price reductions. And you will have less to pack when the time comes to move. All of that being said, if you can do it, then do it.

To contact me, call 847-292-4700, e-mail or visit


About Giuseppe Zerillo

Giuseppe Zerillo is the managing broker and owner of Zerillo Realty Inc. He is active on many boards, serving as village trustee of Harwood Heights and corporate secretary for Casa Italia. In 2011, he received the IANU Foundation's 2011 David Award for outstanding promise in the field of real estate, and in 2012 he was honored by the Illinois State Crime Commission for his community outreach. Constantly seeking opportunities to give back, he donates to several charities and raises money for children with disabilities.

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