Never underestimate the power that staging your home can have on potential buyers.

If you’re like me you have probably been mesmerized by the work of Candice Olson (Divine Design and Candice Tells All), Jonathan and Drew Scott (Property Brothers) and more recently Jillian Harris (Love It or List It Vancouver).

Today I came across an article posted by the Calgary Herald that gathers these HGTV designers’ tips for staging a home that are invaluable for homeowners getting ready to put their house on the market.

Home Staging Tip:
Declutter and Depersonalize

After working with a number of sellers I know that the home is a very personal space. Paintings on the wall, framed family portraits on end tables and kids’ artwork on the fridge. However these sentimental belongings will have little affect on strangers coming through your home.

Candice Olson says it perfectly,

“Selling your house is about taking your personality out of it and having people going through it envisioning their own life and personality.”

Jillian Harris further recommends using mirrors instead of art because they add depth and dimension, visual space and light. She also recommends packing away all the items taking up space and cluttering your closets and cupboards until it’s time to move. Potential buyers don’t need to see these items and they only make your house seem smaller.

Home Staging Tip for the Kitchen and Bathroom:
Put Your Best Foot Forward

The kitchen is the gathering place in the home and always a major selling feature if it is properly staged.

Toronto’s Love It of List It Designer Hilary Farr recommends that you go for simple updates such as refacing kitchen cabinets, changing the backsplash or repainting. She says you can give the kitchen a major facelift in terms of style without having to invest too much.

When updating and staging bathrooms Olson suggest you keep it simple with fresh coats of neutral paints to the walls and trim and adding an updated light fixture.

Home Staging Cleaning Tip:
Make Your Home Welcoming Like a Magazine

First impressions are critical!

Even within a few seconds of walking through your home your buyer makes impressions based on lighting, smells, cleanliness and overall atmosphere. Remember that the buyer needs to envision themself living in your home.

Farr gives the advice to dress it up to look like the best hotel room you’ve ever seen. This includes staging items such as:

  • Putting our fresh towels in the bathroom
  • Filling a few vases with fresh cut flowers
  • Pleasant, mild odors in the home (the scent of fresh baked cookies is great)
  • Clean and gleaming floors
  • Tidy bed with plump pillows
  • Clean disinfected kitchen counters
  • Stage countertops with a fresh bowl of fruit and put away all extra appliances

Home Staging Tip for the Yard:
Offer Great Curb Appeal

Don’t forget about the outside of your home!

As Spring gets closer and we begin to see green grass and flowers pop up a rundown front yard becomes less and less forgiving. If you don’t have a green thumb I recommend that you hire a landscaper to come and spruce it up by laying fresh mulch, trimming overgrown shrubs and pressure washing the driveway.

Having beautiful curb appeal with a “For Sale” sign on the lawn draws extra attention from people cruising through the neighborhood. They are more likely to want to see the inside of the home if the outside looks well-kept and inviting.

I hope that these tips for selling in today’s market by some of the best designers we see on TV have been helpful for you. As Drew says,

“It’s just as important as any sort of renovation, because if a buyer can’t walk into a space and picture themselves living there, they’re not going to give you top dollar, for one, and they might just turn and walk away.”

If you are getting ready to list your Surrey or Vancouver home I would love to provide some ideas and tips for staging your home. Every house is different and I can help apply these basic staging tips to your house. Email me at or by phone or text at 778-316-4290.