If you’re considering putting your home on the market, one of your first priorities should be making the property look its absolute best — without spending a pile of money, in the process.

Sometimes a do-it-yourself approach is the most economical way to handle home staging, but getting professional advice can help you stay on track, in terms of both money and time.

There are a lot of talented and knowledgeable home staging consultants out there, but the benefits of hiring them are not always worth the cost.

An advantage of working with a seasoned real estate agent or Realtor is that they have the ability to size up the visual appeal of a home and make recommendations on how to improve it. If they’ve been in the real estate business for a few years, they’ve received buyer feedback from literally hundreds of house hunters. As a result, they’re very familiar with all the pet peeves potential buyers typically have, such as outdated decor, ugly wallpaper, cluttered living spaces, hideous artwork, tacky wallpaper, inadequate lighting, unpleasant odors, overgrown yards, or any aspect of a property that is cracked, peeling, broken, or in disrepair.

Where to Begin With Home Staging

If you’re looking for free home staging ideas, you can always ask your friends and family for suggestions, but they might be hesitant to give you the unvarnished truth. Not only that, but their taste in decorating or landscaping may be less than exemplary! However, if you do know someone who has a knack for decorating, furniture arrangement, and/or landscaping, then they could be a great source of helpful suggestions, ideas, and inspiration.

A good starting point for discovering economical ways to bring out the best in your home is the Internet. You’ll get a wealth of practical ideas by Googling the phrase “increasing your home’s value.” Not only will you learn some useful home staging ideas from reputable websites, but you’ll also notice many recurring themes for improving the look and feel of your property.

Staging your home effectively involves a combination of common sense, knowledge of home buyer psychology, and the ability to objectively evaluate (and improve upon) a property’s marketability.

Cost-Effective Home Staging Advice

A real estate agent or Realtor who has been showing houses for years has gathered an immense amount of informal feedback on what attracts and repels prospective buyers. While it doesn’t take a home staging expert to pick out the obvious issues that need to be addressed, you’d be surprised at what a real estate agent with a trained eye and a few years of experience can notice. Improvements and changes which seem trivial to you may actually have a significant impact on how fast you’re able to sell your home.

In preparing your property for sale, one of the major factors to consider is the age-old concept of “cost versus benefits”. Enhancing the appearance of your home beyond a certain point can produce diminishing returns, so it’s a good idea to get a professional opinion when mapping out a house staging strategy.

If you’re lucky enough not to need any major repairs on your home, then preparing to put your property on the market can be as simple as eliminating clutter, keeping your home impeccably clean, and making sure your lawn is consistently well manicured — which, of course, is easier said than done! A fresh coat of paint, here and there, can also make a world of difference, when it comes to making a positive first impression on potential buyers.

With the ever-growing number of mobile apps out there it can be difficult to know which ones you’ll really use and which ones you’ll never even open. If you’re moving to a new house or apartment soon, we’ve got you covered. These five apps are all you need to use when it comes time to start packing your things.

1. Sortly

There’s no shortage of checklist apps on the market. Most phones come with simple to-do list apps pre-installed that are useful when you need to make a trip to the grocery store. But when it comes to moving, things get more complicated. Sortly is an app designed just for that. It has many uses aside from moving, like doubling as an inventory system for small businesses. It’s great for moving because it allows you to sort, organize, print QR labels for your boxes, take pictures, add notes and more.

2. MoveAdvisor

Another useful multitasking moving app is MoveAdvisor. However, it’s most useful feature for your move will be its detailed timeline. With MoveAdvisor you can schedule out all of the important details weeks or months in advance, all the way up to your moving date. With its reminders you’re sure to stay on track and feel prepared once moving day arrives.

If you’re planning on hiring a moving company, MoveAdvisor will also provide you with lists and reviews of movers in your area and help you calculate moving costs.

3. TaskRabbit

Moving requires lots of help. From simple errands, to cleaning and shopping, TaskRabbit is the app that connects you to people that you can pay per task completed. Jobs done from TaskRabbit workers are insured and workers are highly vetted so you don’t have to worry about the security of your things.

When it comes to your move, you can hire people on TaskRabbit to help you complete a number of moving-related tasks. You can commission a helper to pack and box your things for you, or to lift, move, and assemble furniture. The help doesn’t end there, however… you can also hire someone on TaskRabbit to help you clean up your old home or prepare your new home for you during your move.

4. Google Maps

The most important app for the drive to your new home will be a reliable GPS app. In our experience, the app that gets you where you need to be with the fewest mistakes is Google Maps. You can map out your drive in advance, planning for rest stops to refuel yourself and your moving van. With Google Maps you can also easily share routes with other people who may be in your moving caravan so that everyone’s on the same page.

Moving far away? Google Maps works across country and overseas. Contact hotels right from the app to book in advance and hunt for good reviews. With Google Maps, there’s no reason the commute to your new home shouldn’t go smoothly.

5. BrightNest

So you’ve arrived at your new home, taken all of your boxes out of the moving van, and now it’s time to relax before you start to unpack and decorate. While you take a breather, check out BrightNest. It’s a haven for great ideas on decorating and arranging furniture. It will also give you recipe ideas for your first meal in your new home. Enjoy!

 

 

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