Staging a house to sell

When we put the flip house on the market, I figuered that the best way to show it was to leave it empty.  I wanted the buyers to see what they were getting for their money, all the beautiful finishes that make the house.  So this is how it looked when the potiental buyers opened the door

New layout from front door

The feedback from the potential buyers we were getting, was all so positive, “model home” “beautiful” etc.. Everyone absolutely loved the house, BUT no one was putting in an offer {well, we got 3 low ball thank you}  Evidently, the potential buyers were having a hard time visualizing their furniture in the house.  Remember, this is an over 55 community, so most people are down sizing, and it will most likely be their last home to purchase.  Now first of all, anytime you move, no matter what age you are, furniture you already own never works perfectly in your next home. Secondly, if you are down sizing, you will have less room, which means less furniture will fit.  So in order to alleviate these visual issues the buyers were having, I decided to cave and stage the house.

I had never staged a house before.  I thought about hiring a staging company, but I knew the house so well, and since I am a designer, I decided to do it myself.  I also decided to get it done in 3 days before the next open house.  Talk about scrambling! I was a woman on a mission, shopping all over town, from thrift shops, consignment stores and all the retail stores in between.  I didn’t want the fill the house with a certain style, I wanted to create a collected look, incorporating a variety of styles and finishes that would compliment the house.

And now this is what you see when you walk into the house

Staging a house to sell

Looks more homey now right?  After 3 days of speed shopping, lots of loading and unloading of furniture, and adding in items from my own home, I can now call it staged.  Woohoo.  I created an entryway by using a Homegoods console and a mirror from a consignment shop, and added accessories to homey it up a bit

Staging a house to sell

Adding a dining room table under that beautiful chandelier really grounded that area.  The table and chairs are from Pier One.  I got a deal on the table because it was a floor model, and I opened a Pier One credit card to save 10% on the chairs and to get reward points ๐Ÿ™‚

Staging a house to sell

I really wanted to put a hutch behind the dining room table, but I was on a limited budget and time crunch, so instead I borrowed the buffet from my house.

staging a house to sell

The artwork was $10 from the thrift shop.

staging a house to sell

At the entry, when you look to the right, it is the living room area.  Here it is before I staged it

staging a house to sell

And here it is after. I divided up the large area into two sitting spaces.  One area for tv watching and the other area as a conversational grouping

Staging a house to sell

I have to say by FAR my favorite pieces I bought are those two leather chairs {consignment shop} and the linen chesterfield style love seat {Homegoods}

linen chesterfield loveseat

The acrylic coffee table is borrowed from my home, and the rug was a Homegoods find for $40. The drapes were a steal, $30 for two 96″ panels {Homegoods} They made such an impact for such little money

mint green table lamp

Mint lamp and side table..where else..Homegoods.  Going in there 3 days in a row buying so much stuff, let’s just say they got to know me ๐Ÿ™‚ Here is the dining room, entryway and conversational sitting area looking from the kitchen.  I love that it has a combination of traditional, modern and rustic pieces, but still flows together.  AND! it looks collected {collected over 3 days lol  ๐Ÿ™‚ }

staging a house to sell

I realized that the living room area could of used a sofa and a love seat, but for staging sake, and budget, I only used a sofa

staging a house to sell

Which left me with a big empty wall where a love seat should of been.  So I bought the starburst mirror {Steinmart. $40} and a slipper chair from Target to fill the void

staging a house to sell

The Target slipper chair was on clearance for $83!  I added a live plant to fill the corner.  I looked into silk plants, but number one they looked fake, and number two they are pricey

Target slipper chair in grey

The jute rug from Pier One ties the color from the sitting area to the living area, and gives the room texture.  It’s one of my favorite finds.  The coffee table was a clearance item from a local furniture store, and the accessories are borrowed from my house

staging a house to sell

When I remodeled the house, I had a plug and cable outlet installed above the fireplace.  But since I wasn’t going to bring in a TV for staging, I just used a piece of artwork. The artwork was $30 at the thrift shop and the vases are from my house {Target last year}

Staging a house to sell-15

I was a little leery to use too many accessories.  I didn’t want to clutter up the place, and I didn’t want any to walk away mysteriously.  I also didn’t want to stage every room in the house. I stuck to the main living areas, because my goal was to showcase the house not fill it up.   The kitchen area is by far my favorite {besides those leather chairs}  I got so lucky on pulling this one off! I bought the tall bench at a consignment shop, which means no returns, I was afraid it might be too big for the space, but I took a chance. It’s a small area, and I wanted to make a big impact.  Luckily it was a perfect fit.  I needed a small round table, and again, lucky me, World Market just came out with this small drop leaf table.  I paired it with two dining chairs from Pier One.

High back bench and round table

I could of stepped up my game and done a better job of styling the table, and maybe put artwork on the wall, but again, I didn’t want to clutter the place. I think it is just enough for buyers to get the feel of how to use the space.

Small drop leaf talbe

After 3 days of staging shopping and hauling, my mind and body was spent.  Staging is hard work and you need a lot of help, which I didn’t plan for, lesson learned.  I did as much staging as I could do in those 3 short days, but now it was time for the open house, and see what the feedback would be. And guess what? It paid off! Within a week, the house got a FULL offer and will close in 3 weeks. CHA CHING!  AND!  There is another buyer that wants to snatch it up if the first offer falls through. YAHOO! That three day mad woman shopping and staging paid off. AND! get this…the new buyers are 85 years old..what? If you were to ask me what age group would be drawn to this house, I would of told you closer to the 55 age range.  Never did I imagine an older couple like that to like the newer more updated design.  I am floored, but at the same time excited, I can’t wait to meet this hipster older couple.  I hope we are all that cool when we are 85 ๐Ÿ™‚

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  1. wow! that was a very interesting read Stephanie! I love hearing the way you think things out. Maybe you should become a professional home stager for those who flip houses!

    I noticed in the old episodes of Flip or Flop the houses were empty and now they use a staging company.

    My favorite? I think the dining room table and chairs. They are really pretty.

    So inspiring that you got such great deals at the thrift stores. Now…. what to do with it all? Storage for the next one? ๐Ÿ˜‰


  2. Love what you did here, you added just the right amount of decorative touches. Very nicely done!

  3. Beautiful staging! Wish I had this gift ๐Ÿ™‚