Staging For Summer: Inside & Out

Your buyers look at properties differently in the summer. Here is part of the comprehensive checklist we follow to make sure all bases are covered so that you get your sellers top dollar for their homes. 

First, start outside:

1. Recheck the paint.

As the sun gets stronger, it affects the exterior paint. You probably checked the paint carefully when first talking about putting the house on the market. But, it's not uncommon to see exterior paint begin to peel or flake as the days get hotter. Recheck the front door and all outdoor trim: fascia boards, door surrounds, and window frames to confirm that all is in perfect condition before the first showing.

2. Remove the bugs.

Cicadas. Love them or hate them, you don't want cicadas cluttering up the walkway. Clean the door surrounds and all parts of the front walkway. This goes for pollen, too, which seems to coat all surfaces overnight.

3. Nix the nests.

Wasps' and hornets' nests, that is. The last several homes we staged all had either mud wasps or hornets nesting in the eaves. Do a careful survey of the eaves and fascia boards to spot these intruders.

4. Clean the pool.

If your listing has a pool, it must be sparkling clean. You want your buyers to imagine how nice it would feel to relax outside on a hot day. You do not want them to imagine just how much time and money they'd need to spend to get the pool ready for themselves and guests. 

Then, move inside:

1. Reset the AC.

Set the thermostat at an appropriate temperature for summer days well before each showing. As the upstairs will always be warmer, check the temperature there to make sure that it's cool enough. Buyers will become wary if they walk into a house that's too warm and might wonder if there is a problem with the air conditioning. And, they need to feel comfortable so that they stay to notice all of the beautiful features of your listing and decide to put in a competitive bid.

2. Stage all balconies, porches, and decks.

Yes, this is under inside: here is where we show that these close-in outdoor spaces - and even the yard - are extensions of the home's living space. These days, buyers actively seek and appreciate outdoor spaces. Stage the balcony, screened-in porch, patio, or deck to encourage your buyer to imagine just how nice it would be to have a morning cup of coffee or evening beverage outside. 

The same point as above: the space will need to be carefully cleaned before each showing so that there is no pollen or cicadas in sight.

3. Adjust the décor.

Touch up the décor with the best of summer. I like to add subtle coastal touches: natural textures and perhaps a sea-inspired accent piece or two, to help give the home an airy feel and remind your buyers of their latest beach vacation. Complete the look with seasonal flowers, like peonies or forsythia. 

Staging a listing for summer requires a different eye: an understanding of just how your buyers will view the property differently at this time of year. Contact me to discuss how we can help adjust the details so that you get the maximum price possible for your seller.