Decorating Do's and Don'ts
for Home Sellers
By Mark Nash
- Take the time to paint walls, trim and
ceilings. Keep adjoining rooms in the same color palette which
will make your home appear larger and flow better. Clean up
spills from messy painters. Hire professionals to paint mullions
on windows and staircase spindles.
- Slipcover mismatched furniture in a room
that requires visual unification. Streamline window fashions.
Heavy drapes are in the minority. Think "let the light shine in"
when placing placing blinds and shades. Light and bright can
overcome other issues with home.
- Test all door and cabinet knobs. Replace
mismatched or inexpensive hardware for a quick update. Buyers
rarely can get beyond a knob that comes off in their hand as
they attempt to use a door.
- Freshen-up closets with closet
organizers to maximize storage space and paint a neutral
washable color. Make sure buyers can see the back of all closets
and cupboards. Lighting is often overlooked feature in closets,
but buyers will always turn on lights when viewing a closet, big
- Install technology wiring for high-speed
Internet, cable, and WI-FI, if you have walls opened up. "Wired
homes" are becoming one of the top whistle and bells buyers
demand. Don't overlook the bathrooms!
- Consider the appropriate level for
finishes in kitchens and bathrooms. Buyers in a mid-priced
neighbourhood aren't looking for high-end finishes. Clean every
surface until it shimmers and shines. Clean can seal a deal.
Don't forget the windows.
- Polish and wax hardwood floors to
brighten and blend an old finish.
- Get rid of family and highly personal
photos. Buyers can't visualize themselves in a home that's still
- Edit your furniture and accessories in
every room. Less is more, buyers are looking to purchase your
real estate not your personal property.
- Make sure there is balanced lighting in
every room for dusk and evening showings. Dimmers help set the
- Take the time to clean, organize and
paint basements, attics and garages. Many a home buyer has
passed on a home they otherwise liked because it had a "creepy"
attic or basement.
- Install new light switch covers. Most
buyers interact with these on home showings. Worn or out-of-date
covers lack attention to detail.
- Don't install inexpensive home-center light
fixtures nor use interior fixtures outside. The right fixtures
say quality to buyers.
- Don't block good room and house flow. Awkward
furniture placement can make a room feel smaller than it is.
Keep in mind that groups of people will be walking through your
home together. Dont overlook the front door. First impressions count.
Paint the door, polish the hardware and illuminate the entry
area and house numbers.
- Don't forget to remove all dated and dusty
silk flowers and plants. Budget for weekly fresh flowers and
potted plants while your home is being toured. .
Mark Nash, Real Estate Author, Broker &
Mark Nash is the author of "Fundamentals of
Marketing for the Real Estate Professional", "Starting & Succeeding
in Real Estate", "Reaching Out: The Financial Power of Niche
Marketing", and "1001 Tips for Buying and Selling a Home". Mark is a
contributing writer for: Realtor (R) Magazine Online, Broker Agent
News, Real Estate Executive Magazine, Principal Broker, and Realty
Times. He contributes residential real estate analysis to Business
Week, CBS The Early Show, CNN, HGTVpro.com, The New York Times, and
View his books at www.1001RealEstateTips.com