Toronto Condo Team

Condo Staging Mistakes That Can Cost You A Sale

Friday Sep 04th, 2020


If you are selling your condo, be prepared to compete against a glut of shiny new condos with fancy amenities. While you may think your home can pretty much speak for itself, Pinterest and Instagram makes sure buyers won’t see it that way. If you want your condo to leave a great impression, staging is your best friend. The goal of staging is to put the best possible face on your property in a way that allows buyers to see its full potential, without the usual distractions. If you are in the process of staging, here are a few mistakes that are an unfortunate dealbreaker.

Skipping The Essentials

“Fresh, clean, and bright” is the universal rule of staging. Remember that your buyers may also have been viewing pristine, unlived-in condos, so you need to live up to their expectations. Since potential buyers are going to put in a massive investment, they are expecting picture-perfect condos that are ideally turn-key ready, without putting in any work. This is why giving your entire condo a fresh coat of paint is a must. You can even freshen up tired kitchen cabinetry with a coat of paint.

Next, you need to replace wall-to-wall carpeting or polish and refinish hardwoods, until they gleam as good as new. Then get down to the numerous repairs you may have been putting off; replace any broken doorknobs, deal with any creaking door or floorboards, grout the bathroom, and fix the leaky faucet. Buyers start chipping away at the price when they see such flaws. Last but not the least, clean every nook and cranny of your condo, including the windowsills. Also, don’t forget the curb appeal when you are done on the inside, since first impression matters.

Refusing To Freshen The Air

Remember, if you can smell it, you can’t sell it! Often times, the first thing that potential buyers notice about a condo is how it smells. While most homeowners try to mask any lingering odors or savory smells with strong air fresheners and burning candles, don’t think for a second that buyers won’t catch a whiff of the unwanted smells after a while. Staging experts recommend removing odiferous items from the bath and kitchen and replacing them with warm and inviting alternatives. Also, get rid of any mildew, cigarette smoke, kitty litter or wet dog smells.

Inadequate Lighting 

Most homeowners don’t set a score by lighting when they are in the process of staging. Yet, proper lighting has a huge impact on bringing a space to life. You can leverage spotlights to highlight some focal point, natural light to make a space appear bigger, or specialized lighting to create intimacy in a larger room. If you have a dark apartment, you will specially need to focus on proper lighting to brighten things up. Our experts recommend swapping out LED for warm (incandescent) light bulbs. Not to mention, you can also take down window treatments to maximize exposure and incorporate mirrors and other reflective surfaces throughout the condo. However, if a window is opening on a brick wall, it would be better to go for sheer blind that can soften the view while allowing the light to filter through.

Outdated Window Treatments

Nothing can kill the look and feel of a room faster than outdated, dilapidated window treatments. Those vertical window blinds that you don’t want to get rid of, actually look sadder than you can imagine.  Fortunately, window treatments won’t break your bank and you can try on a few styles to see what goes best with your condo décor. In fact, we think that a set of sheer white curtains against heavy dark, velour panels are a universal blessing.

Not Knowing Your Audience

Whether you want to craft a killer marketing campaign, a Grammy-winning album, or stage a condo, the key is to know your audience. As a rule of thumb, go about the process of staging with your audience in mind if you want to appeal to their taste. Think about what kinds of leads might be attracted to your house and stage according to their preferences. For instance, if your listing is in a young, hip area where college students and young professionals are more likely to be potential buyers, you can go for mid-century furniture and minimal graphic art. But on the other hand, of you are looking to appeal to senior citizens, a more traditional staging will pique their interest better than a slick, modern one.

Clutter (enough said)

Granted the process is rife with emotion, decluttering has never been more important than it is now. Once your property has been listed for sale, you would do well to think of it in terms of a product than a home. A great tip is to pre-pack your belongings since toy will have to do that eventually anyway. However, the key is not to go overboard. There should be a balance between having too much clutter and not having enough. Empty, stark spaces don’t invite warmth. Staging should appear life-like. Just remember that Storage, or the lack thereof, is a definite dealbreaker. Don’t leave any stuff on the floor. Try to stash all but in-season clothes and outerwear in a storage unit. People want to see how organized their life will be in their future home, and you can be as aspirational as possible.

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