How to style your home for sale

Market Insights
4 years ago
5 minutes

When you’re selling your home you normally want to offload it as quickly as possible, but it’s sometimes hard to stand out from the pack. However, a few simple changes around the place can help speed up the process and could even boost the value of the property.

Prospective buyers reportedly form an opinion of a home within the first 7-10 seconds of stepping in the front door, so making a good impression is paramount.

This is where home staging comes in. According to research conducted by Mattress Online, homes sell faster when they have been staged. Not only that, the research reveals that these dwellings also sell for at least 17% more than a home that has not been staged.

Here are a few tips to get your home looking its best.

Remove all clutter but don’t depersonalise

One of the most important things you can do is get rid of all the clutter in your home. Either throw it away or store it neatly out of sight.

All floors and surfaces should be clutter-free and clean. Even cupboards and closets should be neatly organised in case sneaky viewers start peaking.

credit: Vault Interiors

This is often an unenviable task, but potential buyers may not be able to see past your clutter, so pack away and start purging things you don’t need — you’ll have to do this when you move anyway.

Remember, though, people need to be able to envisage what the property would look like if they were living there. So don’t declutter to the point where your home looks like a hotel. Leave some personality behind to give viewers suggestions as to what they might want to do with the place.

Fix and clean

By cleaning your home from top to bottom, you’ll make it look newer, fresher, and more appealing. Scrub everything until it sparkles, get rid of limescale, clean and repair tile grout, wax wooden floors, and get rid of bad odours. This will make the place look more liveable. 

If you have an outdoor area or garden, cut bushes back, clean the patio and furniture, and cut the grass. If you have time to add a lick of paint, colour the fences a dark brown. This draws more attention to that lush, green backyard you’ve maintained.


Make any minor repairs that are outstanding. Most buyers won’t want to move in if there are lots of damages to the property, so fix any holes in walls, broken doorknobs, cracked tiles or torn carpets. 

Furniture and plant placement

Generally, you’ll want to make your rooms feel bigger and furniture placement is key to this. People normally scan a room from left to right, so place the tallest items of furniture in the far left corner of a space and the area will appear larger.

Dot plant-life strategically throughout, even in the bathrooms and toilets. These require care and attention, so if they are alive and healthy, it gives a signal that the house is lived in and cared for. But try to stay away from flowers — although they look lovely, they die faster than plants and you’ll go broke buying a fresh bunch every week.


If you’re wondering where you should place certain pieces of furniture and other items, take a walk around the home and pause where people are likely to stop. At these points look at what they would be focusing on, and if it’s not pleasing to the eye, move it or change it up. 

Windows and Walls

Use mirrors to make rooms appear bigger, or hang some artwork to give some character to the space. Be aware, though, that your tastes may not appeal to everyone, so keep it simple. Also, remove personal photos — you want buyers to imagine themselves living in your house and it can be hard to imagine living somewhere when there are photos of strangers smiling at you.


As well as cleaning the windows thoroughly, consider dressing them properly with blinds or curtains as naked windows make a place feel impersonal and run down. Buy some cheap ones that can be thrown away afterwards if necessary.


Appeal to everyone with a clean, tailored master bedroom, free of personal items and clutter. You can't go wrong with crisp linens, tasteful artwork and a blanket folded at the foot of the bed.

credit: Toll Brothers

Don’t make your bed like a hotel, but do make it a little nicer than you would do on a normal day. Make sure you have a few euro pillows, normal pillows, extra cushions and at least one throw. Do this in all the bedrooms — just because it’s not a room that you use, that doesn’t mean your prospective buyers won’t.

Follow these steps and your home will be sold in no time.

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