Staging a house on a budget: Which rooms should you prioritize?

Not everyone can afford to stage their entire Washington D.C. home to sell. If money’s tight right now, should you just not stage at all?

No, there’s a reason that a third of realtors recommend all their clients stage their home, even when their home isn’t a difficult sell. It’s because staging your home is important for getting the most for your home as quickly as possible. Home staging….

  • Gets you a higher selling price (an average of 6.32% over the listing price)
  • Sells your home more quickly
  • Draws in potential buyers with beautiful online photos
  • Highlights the best of your home (and downplays anything less-than-ideal)

So while you shouldn’t shirk home staging altogether, you can decide to only stage certain rooms in your home to save money. Knowing which rooms to prioritize during the staging process can help you stay within budget but still get many of the benefits of home staging.

Here are my budget-friendly recommendations for staging your home to sell in Washington D.C.:

For tiny budgets – The first-impression rooms

Kitchen home staging in Washington D.C.

When potential buyers walk in, what are the first two rooms they see? These are the rooms that you should stage before any others.

For most homes, the first two rooms that potential buyers walk into are the living room and kitchen. However, your home might be different if you have a less common layout. For example, if your dining room is right off the front door, you should focus on that room first.

Even if the rest of your home is empty or full of your old furniture and kid’s toys, a wow first impression can make a big difference for how potential buyers value your home. (And because they’ll leave through the same door they came in, that beautiful first impression also becomes the perfect final impression!)

To recap, first impression rooms = the living room and kitchen (usually).

For moderate budgets – The most lived-in rooms

Master bedroom home staging in Washington D.C.

If you have some space in your budget after your stage your living room and kitchen, you should stage the rooms that get the most mileage. These are the rooms that people tend to spend the most time in, and so they’re often the rooms that people are most eager to see in a potential new home.

Across the board, these rooms are the master bedroom and the dining room. For homes that don’t have a dining room, you could choose a second living room, den, or first-floor office.

Because most of us spend a lot of time in the bedroom (and care about how it makes us feel), staging the master bedroom is an easy way to immediately add value to your home. To go above and beyond, you could include the master en suite bathroom with this room without a huge extra cost.

And staging your dining room means that the bulk of your first floor will be staged. As potential buyers move through your home, it’ll feel like it has a cohesive and appealing flow.

To recap, the most lived-in rooms = master bedroom and dining room.

For larger budgets – The whole home

Whole home staging in Washington D.C.

You know those HGTV shows where the final reveal is room after beautiful room, throughout the entire house? Imagine your home making that kind of satisfying impression on potential buyers. When buyers compare your home to others that aren’t staged (cluttered with personal, mismatching stuff or empty), the choice will be easy. That’s what staging your whole home does for you.

So, if you have the financial resources, I highly recommend staging your whole home. Most of the time you’ll get back what you spent many times over in the final sale price plus the cost you saved by selling quickly.

Other budget-friendly tips for home staging

If you’re looking for ways to get the benefits of home staging without breaking your budget, here are my budget-friendly home staging tips:

Contact Tactic Staging for home staging in Washington D.C.

Ready to stage your home (or, at least, part of it)? Contact us for a home staging process that’s affordable, personal, and simple.