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No Money for Upgrades? 4 Steps for Cheaply Staging Your Home to Sell

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Selling your house for the best price possible may seem like something you have little control over or something that requires costly investments in updates. But, in reality, even with a low budget and little experience, you can do a lot to help sell your home with a few simple steps. Here is a handy guide to staging your home to sell it quickly.

Fix the Front. The first impressions people get of your home—sometimes even without exiting the car—can be a make-or-break point for selling the property. With this in mind, focus on cheering up and modernizing your front yard and entrance. Green up the lawn, mow it, and edge it neatly. Plant colorful flowers near the curb, along any walkways, and in pots around the front door. Clean up walkways and porches and give them a shine. Consider painting the door a fresh color or changing its hardware to make it really pop. 

Purge the Inside. Now, move into the house and look at it with an objective eye. Your goal is to help potential buyers see themselves in your house. Start doing this by decluttering most of the personal objects on display—including family photos, knick-knacks, souvenirs, mementos, and all signs of animals in the home. Then, remove about half (or more) of what's left, including furniture, art on walls, kitchen items, and clothing in the closets. Find a nearby furniture storage facility such as Allen's Transfer where you can keep bulky sofas, extra tables, unnecessary beds, desks, or personal decor pieces until you've sold the home. 

Clean Deeply. Now that you've simplified the decoration and layout of the rooms, it's time to give them all a thorough scrub. Wash walls, trim, door frames, and windows. Have the carpets cleaned professionally. Don't forget to look up and to look down in order to identify hard-to-spot dust and dirt. If you have the extra money in your budget, consider hiring a professional cleaning service to give the house a one-time deep clean. 

Neutralize It. Finally, finish depersonalizing the home by altering some rooms if necessary. Replace bold wall colors, aging wallpaper, or outdated color schemes with a fresh coat in a neutral color—such as ivory, a pale pastel, a gray tone, or beige. Replace eclectic decor items (like your kids' favorite football-team curtains, for example) with simpler versions in solid colors or basic prints. If you changed the purpose of any rooms from their original intention (such as turning a formal dining room into an office), put it back to its original purpose for staging reasons. 

By knowing how to stage your house with a view to making it appeal to future buyers, you can do a lot to get a great price with only a little money spent. And once you've put that "sold" sign in the yard, you'll be glad you did.