The point of staging is to show off a property to its best potential. If you want the best possible price for your property, you have to show it off as though nothing needs to be improved. I have said this in many previous blogs, but it bears repeating: once you decide to sell your property, stop thinking of it as your home and try to see it as a buyer would. Depending on your property and situation, hiring a professional stager may not be an option. If this is the case, go to a few open houses at a variety of price ranges, but see as many as you can in your price range. Take note of how your competition looks and see what you can do improve your property. If there are not many open houses to see, at the very least do not do any of the following.
Showcasing an odd hobby
If you are an avid accordion collector or have an arachnid obsession, there is no place better to show off your passion than in your home. However, if a buyer comes in, they will not be able to look past it. Worst case scenario, a buyer has a phobia with your hobby and will leave regardless of whether your property is otherwise perfect for them.
People are visual creatures. Most people remember what they see more than what they read or hear. If your home is visually overwhelming (an incohesive color scheme, mismatched furniture, etc), it will be a turn off for buyers. Many people have a hard time picturing beyond what is in front of them. You want the buyers eyes to flow over the entire property, from room to room without anything jarring to stop the movement.
I don’t have a problem with themes. Theme parties, theme costumes, theme drinks, etc. However, if you are selling your property, it maybe a good idea to turn The Miami Room (complete with tanning bed and bar) back into a spare bedroom or office.
If your property is messy and smells like anything other than baked goods, expect low ball offers. If you don’t think its worth the time to clean thoroughly, buyers will not think its worth the price you are asking.
I think the A&E television series covers the reasons why this is a no-no.
Hiding a mess instead of cleaning and organizing
If you try to stuff all your boxes of paperwork in a closet instead of organizing a filing system, buyers will not be able to see how much storage your property offers. Whether you live in a single family or a condo, storage is a plus for some and a must have for many more. If buyers miss how much storage your property offers, they may move on to something else.
Homes of interior designers and homes that have been done by interior designers can pass without having to be staged prior to listing the home on the real estate sales market. But even then trinkets and personal items that should be put away and excess pieces of furniture can be put into storage. Taking the time to set your property up to show at its best will help get you the best possible price.