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Fix Your Home Decor and Sell Your Home

Selling your home can be a very time-consuming and frustrating experience. People often spend many months trying to find the right buyers for their homes, and this can mean hosting a lot of open houses and spending a lot of money on real estate agents. Though many people don’t realize it, the décor of a house can have a lot to do with how long that house stays on the market. The wrong decorations can strike fear into the hearts of buyers, and could cause you to lose out on a lot of potential offers. So when you are preparing your home for the market, make sure that you are aware of the best decorating ideas: here are some do’s and don’ts of home decorating!

What You Want to Achieve
When preparing your house to be put on the market, it is important to keep in mind the needs and wants of your potential buyers. Though it can be difficult to see your favorite couch go, or to paint over those orange walls, it is essential to remember that you are no longer living in this house. You want to sell it, and therefore you need to decorate it in way that will be attractive to all potential buyers. Remind yourself of these key ideas when you are decorating:

  • Structure: You want your potential buyers to be able to see the main structure of your house. This means getting rid of extra clutter or anything that could distract buyers from seeing the "bones" of your house.
  • Accessibility: When selling your home, you want all the rooms to be as accessible as possible. Think about the main traffic patterns in your home, and consider how buyers will be moving through the house. Anything that impedes the flow in your house, will likely also impede upon a sale.
  • Livability: Above all, your buyers want to be able to see themselves living in a home. When they see the kitchen, living room, and dining room they don't want to feel like they are moving into someone else's life. Instead, they want a house to operate as a stage for their own lifestyle and belongings.

Decorating Don'ts

When decorating your home for sale, there are some things that you will definitely want to avoid doing:

  • Don't Paint Bright Colors: Bright colors make it hard for buyers to see past your stamp on the home. They can also make rooms look dark and small.
  • Don't Do Big Renovations: Most new buyers do not want to pay for expensive renovations that they haven't designed themselves. This means that if you decide to renovate the kitchen or bathroom, you may not get your money back. Look at houses similar to yours on the market, and find out what their asking prices are. Don’t renovate if you don’t think that you can recoup the money.
  • Don't Block House Flow: buyers want to be able to move easily through your home. Don't put large pieces of furniture in your house that will dominate space or interfere with accessibility.
  • Don't Overlook the Basement: Buyers will want to check out your basement, attic, or crawlspace, so don't overcrowd these areas with junk. Give these areas a quick clean and slap on some paint if they need brightening up.
  • Don’t Forget to ask a Professional: Have your real estate agent walk through your home and provide you with tips on how to stage your home for sale. It can make all the difference.

Decorating Do's

Here are some great decorating suggestions that will help to make the most out of your home when it comes to selling it.

Minimize Clutter
Clutter is a potential buyer's worst enemy. The last thing a buyer wants to see is your collection of antique cereal boxes or those pictures you took while skinny-dipping in Hawaii. So work to minimize as much clutter as you possibly can. Remove all extra pieces of art, clothing, and toys. Clear your kitchen and bathroom countertops so that your buyers can actually imagine themselves moving in. Box up extra magazines and books and move out extra pieces of furniture. If you need to, rent a storage locker or borrow a relative’s basement where you can store your extras. Be sure to clean the front of your refrigerator of magnets, notes, and your children's drawings. Though this can be difficult, it will pay off in the end.

Clean, Clean, Clean!
When selling your house, you want to present rooms that are as clean as they can possibly be. Not only does this mean getting rid of clutter, but it also entails dragging the vacuum and mop out too. You may find it worthwhile to hire a professional cleaner, particularly for the bathrooms and kitchen areas. Professional cleaners can get even the most stubborn stains out and can make those dull fixtures shine. Also, this could prevent you from having to shell out for new appliances or fixtures or to have to make a concession when it comes to your home’s price. Adding a new shower curtain and some color-coordinating towels to the bathroom can also go a long way.

Think Neutral
Though you may love your vibrantly painted walls and brightly tinted appliances, most buyers are tentative when it comes to color. Color is a very personal thing, and most buyers will want to put their own stamp on the place. So, when you are preparing to sell your home paint all your walls, baseboards, and doors in neutral tones. This doesn't mean that everything has to be white, but stick to light, pleasing colors such as creams, taupes, and pale yellows. And be sure to stay away from wallpaper! Wallpaper adds textures to walls that most buyers do not want. Strip all wallpaper and replace it with a quick coat of paint. If you have very brightly colored appliances, you might consider moving them out and replacing them with white or stainless steel appliances.

Remember First Impressions
First impressions are everything when it comes to selling your house. Your entry way is going to be the first thing that a buyer sees, so be sure to jazz it up a little. Move shoes, coats, and storage containers out of the way. Introduce a mirror or small console table, which can be accented with some fresh flowers or a beautiful plant. Freshen up your front door with a new coat of paint and place a welcoming chair on your front porch or deck.