by Dave Pankew for Realtor.ca

Highlighting a space's best features and making it feel lived-in but also universally livable is in the details. You need potential buyers to see themselves in the space—knowing that it is staged—but still get drawn into the fantasy of making it their own. Staging is a proven tactic for increasing the value of your home and getting it sold faster.

Clever staging in high-end markets is even more crucial, with some professionals spending upwards of $400,000 to attract the right buyer—but for good reason! That spend can make a million-dollar difference in the sale. That budget might seem like an outrageous stretch for your listing, but applying similar methodology to houses in the average buying bracket can have powerful results.

These staging tactics—some fairly standard (scent, lighting, curb appeal); some with more panache—could help you attract better buyers and sell your home for more.  

Universally livable

 

You're not just showing off the space, you're giving people a glimpse into the lifestyle they're buying. Potential buyers are more inspired to buy when they're able to see themselves in the home—so omit your family photos and personal keepsakes.

Personal items can be easily replaced with things like a cocktail making set, contemporary art or even a borrowed collection of rare vinyl. Just like in multi-million dollar listings, you want to fill your space with items that are desirable and aspirational.

Staging professionals have been known to replace personal family photos with striking landscapes and travel adventures. Some will even go as far as hiring actors and even pets to produce family photos to suggest a lifestyle to prospective buyers.

These tactics may seem a little extreme, but if you can think of simple ways to help the right buyers envision themselves in your space, you'll be off to a good start.

Rent a vintage or luxury vehicle

In one of the most expensive houses ever listed in the United States, the seller included a more than $30-million U.S. collection of classic and exotic cars, collectibles and even a helicopter.

Okay, that's an extreme example, but exotic and classic cars can be rented from businesses, rental apps or even local car owners to help strike a subconscious chord that gets buyers excited and attached to the listing. 

Add a bar

Multi-million dollar listings often have a wine cellar, complete with bottles on loan to impress buyers. 

Displayed properly, wine and spirits can help your listing punch above its weight class. If you are left with a variety of expensive bottles after the sale, you can put them towards a celebration in honour of all those who helped make it happen.

High-end staging gets results

In hot markets, staging might just mean a thorough cleaning and decluttering, but in other markets—especially in vacant or high-end properties—these extra details can have a greater impact.Taking these tactics and applying them yourself with the input of your REALTOR® could make a surprising difference in the sale of your home.