Staging Shortcuts That Sabotage Your Stuart FL Home Sale

Dated: 11/15/2019

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Home staging is a major player in the sale of your Stuart FL home. How your home looks, feels, and even smells can influence buyers’ decisions, so it’s important to present your home in the best light.

Stuart FL home for sale

Staging mistakes you need to avoid

Cleaning, decluttering, and rearranging furniture are essential to preparing your Stuart FL house for showings, but it can be tempting to take a few shortcuts to get your property on the market faster. Out of all the home staging shortcuts that can hinder your home sale, these you should avoid at all costs.

Keeping your interiors too dark

Your property needs to shine on the market — don’t dim your home’s sparkle.

Natural light works wonders to maximize space, especially for small floor plans, so it’s important to let in as much sunlight as possible when staging your home.

Pro tip: Here are some lighting stages that will help sell your home.

Bright living room

  • Throw open the curtains. Homes with natural light are more appealing to buyers. Opening the curtains let the light flow, creating a more inviting ambiance to the room. If you have heavy curtains, replace them with something that’s light and easy to open. 

  • Trim any shrubs blocking the windows. Homebuyers love homes that are bright and airy. Trim or cut down any shrubs, vines, and branches that cover the windows. Not only do they darken the space, but they also block the possible view from the window. 

  • Polish the glass to welcome in the natural sunlight. Other than letting light in, clean windows also increase curb appeal. Dirty windows can make a spotless home look unclean, so take time to clean and polish the windows.

  • Add more lamps as needed. If you think your current lighting fixtures don't get the job done, call in some reinforcements. Add bedside lamps, desk lamps, and under-cabinet lighting. Utilizing various kinds of lighting not only increase the light itself, but they also improve the visual aesthetic. 

Painting all of your walls bright, bold colors

Nothing stops home buyers in their tracks faster than loud paint colors that don’t match their personal style. After all, one buyer may prefer rich earthy reds while another may be drawn to calming blues and greens.

Pro tip: Instead of painting your walls in oranges, purples, and electric greens, opt for neutral tones like off-white or beige to appeal to as many home buyers as possible.

Painting all of your walls neutral colors

On the other hand, you can go too far with neutralizing your space. Remember, home buyers are likely looking at several different properties, so you need to make sure yours stands out — and that buyers can envision themselves living in your home.

Splashes of color here and there are enough to draw buyers’ eyes without distracting them from the overall look and feel of your home. The trick is to find a balance between the bold and the neutral colors.

Living room

Pro tip: Create an accent wall. Accent walls are not just limited to paint. You can use other materials to make a wall stand out. Extensive shelving, for example, is a great accent wall. Wallpaper is another great choice for an accent wall. 

Excess furniture 

If you are looking to sell your home, you want it to be seen in the best possible way. You also would want to maximize the space, which means getting rid of excess furniture. This is especially important if you have a small home. 

Removing excess furniture showcases the space of the home. It also makes the room feel uncluttered. 

Pro tip: If you can't find it in yourself to get rid of your furniture, place them in a storage facility. That way, you can still keep them, but they don't take up space in the house. 

Pushing furniture right up against the wall

Yes, you want to create more space, but pushing furniture up against the wall is not the way to do. When the furniture is backed against the wall, you create a large empty space in the middle of the room, making it less inviting. 

Pro tip: Pull the furniture away from the walls to create a more intimate conversation area. 

Wrong sized and/ or not enough furniture

Always match the size of your furniture to your home size. If you have a large living space, use a large sofa for staging. If you have a small home, use a small sofa. Putting a large sofa in a small space takes up too much space, while a small sofa in a spacious living room looks awkward and less appealing. 

Also, if you are staging a large living room, putting just a large sofa is not enough. Creating multiple sitting options around the room makes for a more comfortable and inviting ambiance.  

It’s not just the sofa. The area rugs should also be proportionate to the size of the living space. 

 living room

Pro tip: The area rug should cover the living area, and at least two legs of each piece of furniture should be on it. 


Using tons of throw pillows

Throw pillows are affordable, can be easily replaced, and a great way to transform the look of the room; but too many of on the couch or sofa will leave little space to sit on. Remember, less is more.

Pro tip: While you may love the extra cushioning throw pillows offer, stick to two to three pillows on the sofa for home staging. You can hide the rest of the pillows in the bedroom and just take them out when the potential buyers are gone.

Decor on cabinet tops

Some sellers aren’t probably comfortable seeing bare spaces, that's why they put decor on cabinet tops. Though this may be okay when you are living in the home, it's an entirely different story for home staging. 

When you line up vases, picture frames, or even just hanging plants on top of the cabinet, it lessens the space between the cabinet and ceiling, making the ceiling look lower. 

Removing any decor on cabinet tops increases the space between the cabinet tops and ceiling, making the ceiling look higher. 

Too much focus on the TV

Your potential home buyers may love Netflix as much as you do, but it doesn't mean that you need to design the room around your TV. 

Many home sellers position their sofa in front of the TV.  What this does is it gives you the opportunity to focus more on the TV rather than engaging in conversations with people around you. 

Pro tip:  Try to create a more conversational setting by positioning the TV off-center. This way, the TV is not the main focus, and you can have an easier social interaction. 

Forgetting to deodorize your home

Homebuyers can fall in love with a property merely from the listing photos. But if a foul odor greets them at the front door, they won’t stick around for long. It can be tricky to determine what your home smells like since you have lived in it for so long.

Pro tip:  Here are a few tricks you can use to ensure your home smells fresh and clean for each buyer who schedules a showing:


  • Open the windows to air out your home
  • Hire a professional to deep clean your home
  • Light candles with simple scents, such as orange or vanilla
  • Ask a friend or neighbor for honest feedback

Using empty bedframes 


Empty bedframes are not attractive, neither do they inspire potential homebuyers.

If you are staging your home, don't ignore the bedrooms. Bedrooms are important because the new homeowners will spend every night in this space. 

Your bedroom should feel like an inviting luxury hotel room rather than a storage area. Stage your bedrooms so they look cozy and relaxing so that when the potential buyer comes in, they will want to jump right into the bed and make themselves at home. 

Pro tip: The bed is the focal point of the bedroom, so you need to make it look amazing. Assess your current bedding. Do you think the potential buyer will like it? If the answer is yes, then use it. If not, use fresh bedding. Not sure what to use? Go for white linens. 


Make the bed, making sure to tuck the corners. Add pillows for a pop of color. 

Staging every room 

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and their 2017 Profile of Home Staging, the three most important rooms to stage are the living room, the master bedroom, and the kitchen. 

Does that mean we don't have to stage the other rooms of the house? 

Yes, you can leave a couple of room unstaged. The home office, for example, can be left bare, with only the office table and chair remaining. 

Leaving some rooms unstaged will help the buyers to imagine their belongings in the room. They can easily space they will need. 

Neglecting the front porch 


Home sellers tend to focus too much on the home interior, forgetting that the first thing buyers see when they visit the home for a showing is the exterior. You want the potential buyers to be fairly impressed by the home's exterior that they would also want to see what's inside the house. 


Pro Tip: Create a welcoming appeal by ensuring that the front yard is tidy and trimmed, the driveway and walks are clean, and the porch is spotless. Adding a few potted plants on the porch will also go a long way towards attracting prospective buyers. 

Ignoring the backyard  

The home's interior takes center stage in home staging, but that doesn't mean you have to forget the backyard. Potential buyers love well-maintained backyards, and after seeing so many homes with the beautifully-staged interior, a well-appointed backyard may just be the thing to seal the deal.  

Many home buyers are now looking for that outdoor living space where they can relax and entertain.

Pro tip: Show off your backyard's potential to the prospective buyer by doing the following things:

1. Improve your backyard lawn. Nurture your backyard lawn by aerating, fertilizing, weeding, and trimming. 

2. Power wash the patio, deck, and fences. 

3. Set up a sitting area or an entertainment area. 

Learn more home selling techniques with me

The whole goal of home staging is to present your Stuart FL property in the best light, both for listing photos and for potential buyers. 

If you have questions about what it takes to sell and market your home, call me, Melissa Conrad, at 772-240-2589  and let’s chat.

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