How to Stage a Home: 7 Home Staging Mistakes to Avoid

Mar 30, 2022 | 0 comments

If you wish to sell your home, one of the best things you can do is stage it. That means decorating each room with a few key pieces of furniture and home décor to help buyers envision how they’ll use it.

Home staging shows buyers how much potential your home has, which can make them more likely to make an offer. There are many fun ways you can stage a home and, as you might expect, plenty of things you should not do.

Let’s talk some more about how to stage a home and some common mistakes to avoid.

How to Stage a Home: 7 Home Staging Mistakes to Avoid

When you’re staging a home, the tiniest of details can make a huge difference. You want to grab the buyer’s attention. Here’s how not to stage a home:

Empty Bed Frames or Cheap Linens

Most of us spend eight hours in our rooms a night. A bedroom should be a place of sanctuary and relaxation, and when staging, bringing out those feelings is crucial.

This is especially crucial for picky buyers.

The hard thing about staging bedrooms is there’s not a ton of room for much else besides a bed. So, spend a pretty penny on linens that help a buyer imagine how comfortable that bedroom can be.

Help them paint a picture in their mind about what their room could look like. That’s what helps you sell a home. (Bringing in a bed or maybe even a few pull-out tables to look like a bed is one of our best tips for staging a house for photos.)

Unstaged Patio, Backyard, or Balcony

A big mistake you can make when staging a home is leaving the outdoor living area untouched. We’re in the Pacific Northwest, after all, and we like our time outside.

Most of us have a barbecue to grill steaks for the family or a Traeger for smoking meat on the weekends. Many of us also like to ditch the stereotypical home office on occasion for an outdoor workspace, so you can see why staging the outdoor living area is so beneficial.

So, take the time to stage the patio, backyard, or balcony. That can help your buyers imagine what it’d be like to live at your home. Help them picture a place for Saturday night shenanigans with their neighbors, family game nights, or morning coffee time.

Spending a bit of money and time to add a couple of chairs for families, a few plants, and a small table for drinks can make your home a lot more attractive to potential buyers.

Missing an Accent Wall

Adding an accent wall is an easy, affordable fix for an outdated room. And there are so many things you can do with it. The quickest, easiest way to add an accent wall is to use removable wallpaper.

You can use easy-to-remove stickers and more to spice an area up. But how exactly do you choose your wall? First, look at the elements already present in the room.

What’s begging you to look at it?

A big one we see in homes is a fireplace. It’s already there, so why not use that to your advantage? Turn it into your accent wall, allowing it to steal the show in pictures.

(One wall you will definitely not want to use is one with lots of big windows. Let the view be the focal point for that type of wall. No décor is needed.)

Outdated Drapery

Nothing can make you feel more like you’re residing in a cave like vertical blinds from before the 2000s and yellow, dark lighting. So, what should you not do when staging a house? Keep the same old drapery you’ve had since the 90s!

White curtains, a fresh coat of paint, and lights can modernize your home almost instantly. Not to mention, if you do it right, they can help play up the natural lighting that peeps in through the windows.

It doesn’t take much to step up from the older look, but it’s necessary if the house is a few decades old. Otherwise, you could risk turning away potential buyers.

Our suggestion? Buy drapery that’s minimal (no patterns) and looks new and contemporary. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg. You can get about the same quality as top drapery brands for half the price on Amazon. 

Gendered Bedrooms or Playrooms

If you have a daughter, you might be tempted to decorate a playroom with lots of pink, princesses, and the lot. However, we recommend steering clear of this when putting together your home staging checklist.

The key to staging a home is to be inclusive. Make the room something that any gender would enjoy.

The mission is to help buyers see themselves living there, and it could make it harder for a parent to envision their child in that space if it’s covered in gender-specific colors or items.

Stick with minimal decorations. That means staging a few teddy bears, a bed, and a simple but bright color or two to make the room look fun and warm. Just make sure it fits the home’s overall aesthetic.

Using Fake Plants

Fake plants may seem more practical, but living ones can cost you a lot less money in the long run as fake plants can add up. (You even get some extra oxygen with real plants!)

Also, when staging, you want to consider the placement of the plants. If you put some in a dark corner with no light in sight, it isn’t a nice spin on the room.

In addition, less is more when it comes to staging plants in a home. You don’t want potential home buyers to feel like they’ll be living in a jungle.

Not Using Table or Floor Lamps

When you walk in somewhere, the first thing that catches your eye might be the lighting. Whether it’s bright or dark makes a difference to home buyers.

For instance, if a buyer appreciates a lot of lighting, but there aren’t a lot of windows around, table and floor lamps are great stand-ins. They also make whatever features you put them next to (such as a couch) look more appealing.

A light illuminates a space. It can be the whole focal point of a room or used to just spruce a space up. You choose.

Need Help Selling Your Home?

Now that you know the fundamentals of how to stage a home, you’re well on your way to making your home look appealing to buyers. However, the real estate agent can also make a difference.

If you need a quality realtor to help you sell, we’ve got you covered.

There’s no need to continue searching for a realtor. 4 Degrees is here for you. Call us today to get in touch with an expert agent here in Spokane, WA.