Thinking about selling your Maui home? Rising prices provide incentive for many savvy investors who purchased their properties when prices were low. Home sales have been steady over the past year, but buyers are fairly competitive at this point. Staging your home is a good way to achieve a quick sale at your asking price. It’s just a matter of helping the good qualities of your property stand out. Here are our tips for staging your home, starting with the outside and working our way in.
1. Tend to the curb appeal. First impressions tend to stick more than people realize. Your curb appeal is the first thing a prospective buyer is going to see, so the effort is well worth the results. Plant fresh new vegetation, power wash your walkways and siding, make sure your house numbers are nice and clean, mow the lawn, wash the windows, and repaint where needed. You may even wish to put in a nice mailbox, depending on what shape yours is in.
2. Make your front door inviting. Whether you have a nice front porch, a set of steps, or simply a walkway leading to your front door, take some time to add a little charm that will make guests want to see more. A small investment in a nice clean doormat, potted flowers, and a few nice pieces of outdoor furniture goes a long way. Make sure the light fixtures are working and in good shape. This shows the buyer that you have been maintaining the practical features of the home as much as the aesthetic ones.
3. Clean, de-clutter and remove personal items. A clean and tidy home will show off its best attributes without any negative distractions. It may feel strange to take down your family photos and any other prized possessions that might reflect your personal style and history, but this is an important step. Buyers like to imagine how the home might look when they make it their own. This is easier to do if the house isn’t already saturated with someone else’s personal touches.
4. Aim for gender neutral style. This is another important part of broadening the appeal of your home to whoever may come to see it. If the interior looks too gender-specific, the opposite gender will often feel out of place from the moment they walk in the door. A diverse mix of gender appeal is okay, but at least make sure the master bedroom is as gender neutral as possible, so the buyer can envision himself or herself feeling at home.
5. Bring in the natural elements. One of the safest ways to add style with mass appeal is to put a vase of flowers on your dining table, a bowl of fruit on your kitchen counter, or a little potted orchid in your bathroom. This shows the buyer how attractive and comfortable the home can be, without any of that distracting personal style. It’s all about showing them the potential of the home, and since this is Maui, natural touches are easy to come by!
6. Work on the furniture. Quality, color and arrangement are all worth assessing. Replace worn out pieces with new, sophisticated choices. On Maui, island styles are celebrated, and neutral colors are generally preferred. You may have your furniture situated in a way that was most convenient for your daily use, but the visual appeal is a big part of a successful staging. Make sure seating areas are situated for convenient socializing. When in doubt, opt for symmetry.
7. Give the floors some attention. If you have carpeting, do a steam cleaning. If you have wood floors, refinish them. You might be surprised how important good flooring is to buyers. If your floors still need a little something more, strategic rug placement can add extra comfort and elegance to the space.
8. Clean out the closets. Storage space can make or break a sale, so clean out those closets and try to leave about a third of the space empty so buyers can see the space that’s available. You may need to stash your belongings in some boxes, but this is worth the effort.
9. Keep the bathroom clean and fresh. Visitors want to see empty trash cans, pristine towels, fresh bars of soap or elegant dispensers. Ample lighting is another big plus, as it works with the mirrors to make the space feel more open, so make sure those bulbs are replaced.
10. Enhance your outdoor space. Here on Maui, playing off the surrounding natural beauty can take a home from nice to stunning. Tend to your landscaping and add fresh floral updates to keep things vibrant. Choose some strategic pieces of neutral furniture for your lanai. Play to the strengths of the area where your home is located. Perhaps a hammock would be enticing in the balmy beach towns, a little burbling fountain for the jungle areas like Haiku, or an elegant set of chimes to catch the gentle breezes in Upcountry. The outdoor space is a big selling point for buyers from all kinds of backgrounds. After all, you don’t buy real estate on Maui for an urban lifestyle, but for your own slice of a tropical paradise!
We hope these ten tips have helped get you started on ideas for making the most of your home sale. Investing some time and money into a nice staging can lead to a much quicker sale at a higher price. In short, the investment more than pays for itself. If you need our assistance with putting your Maui home on the market, you’ll find our contact information at the bottom of the page. Mahalo!