Just about everything has gone virtual in the age of the coronavirus, even home sales. In an effort to stay as safe as possible, many homebuyers are opting to see homes online instead of in person. As a home seller, it’s essential that you take this “new normal” into consideration when you put your home on the market. That’s why it’s important to create “screen appeal” to entice potential buyers. Here’s how.
Focus on staging
Staging your home for sale is a great strategy during normal times. But it’s even more important now. Homes that are staged allow potential buyers to see the property in the best possible light. Start by de-cluttering and removing all personal items. Remember – you want buyers to be able to imagine living in the home. Do a thorough cleaning and repaint rooms in neutral colors if needed. Replace light bulbs so every room has ample light. Rearrange furniture to maximize flow, and remove any bulky items that take up too much space. For some it may be wise to rent a storage unit temporarily so you have a safe place to store your stuff until you move.
Take a test run
Now that your home is de-cluttered, cleaned, and staged, do a test run. Take photos of each room and see how they look on screen. Is each room living up to its potential? Are the room’s best features being highlighted? For some rooms, that may be a beautiful view just outside the windows. Or maybe it’s a great architectural feature like a vintage fireplace. Taking preliminary photos before a professional comes in to take them gives you the chance to fine-tune your staging. That way you know you’re getting the best possible results.
Consider virtual staging
Virtual staging can be a great choice for sellers who have empty homes they are putting on the market. Instead of bringing actual furniture into the space, technology does all the work. Virtual staging services are available in most markets and these professionals can digitally add furniture and décor to your photos. You can also try a DIY approach with virtual staging apps that are now available.
Practice the video tour
If you know that your home is going to be shown via video tours, then take a practice run to get a sense of what buyers will be seeing. Get your agent or a friend on the line and take them on a walk-through of your home. This will help you determine which features you want to make sure buyers see and can alert you to any problem areas that you hadn’t noticed. And remember to keep all the paths clear. Whoever is giving the video tour will be trying to juggle several things at once and you don’t want them to trip.
Don’t skimp on curb appeal
Finally, you should also be focusing some time on increasing your home’s curb appeal. Now more than ever the outside of your home is an important part of the picture because it’s the first thing most buyers will see. Clean up the yard and add some seasonal décor to make your home look cozy and welcoming.