Upscale Selling – How to Stage a House for Sale

a living room with olive green sofa, orange chairs and botanical artwork
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Are you looking to turn your modern house into one that will attract a cohort of upscale buyers and fetch the highest price?

Then dive into this upscale house styling adventure with the enthusiasm of a kid who just discovered that money can buy happiness (it totally can if that happiness comes in the form of a perfectly staged mansion).

Selling a house in today’s competitive real estate market requires more than just listing it online and hosting open houses. Learning how to stage a house to fetch the best price for your home and stand out to potential buyers, will help your home result in a faster sale at a higher price. It may even deserve its own Vogue cover shoot too!

How to Stage a House for Sale

white and brown wooden house near bare trees under white sky
Photo by Curtis Adams

Why bother with all this fancy home staging, you ask? Well, unless you enjoy watching potential buyers run screaming from your beloved collection of garden gnomes, styling your house for upscale selling is crucial.

It’s like Tinder for houses – you want that right swipe from high-end buyers who are ready to commit (financially, that is).

So, how do we transform your humble abode into a palace fit for royalty (or at least someone who can afford to pay royal prices)? Well, it’s about taking the home buyer on a journey of curb appeal, interior design, and the dark art of convincing people that they absolutely need a $10,000 smart toilet.

1. Good First Impressions with Curb Appeal


a path leading up to a modern home

Remember when you thought mowing the lawn once a month was enough? Those days are over, my friend. It’s time for your yard to have a makeover and emerge as a perfectly manicured oasis.

We’re talking a lawn so pruned it makes golf courses weep with envy. Add some seasonal flowers for that pop of color, because nothing says “I’m worth millions” like strategically placed petunias. And don’t forget outdoor lighting!

Exterior maintenance

a modern home

Enhance your home’s exterior, we’re talking a fresh coat of paint or a good power washing. Think of it as an exfoliation treatment for your siding. Clean those windows until they’re so spotless that they’re shimmering.

And let’s talk about that front door, it’s the mouth of your house, give it a coat of glossy paint and add a welcome mat so fancy it makes people feel guilty for stepping on it.

Outdoor Living

a garden with corner sofa

It’s no longer simply indoor living but people value their outdoor oasis. That sad plastic chair on your porch? It’s gotta go. We’re staging outdoor spaces with furniture so chic it makes the inside of your house jealous.

Add some potted plants, outdoor rugs, and maybe even a fire pit or water feature. Because nothing says “I have more money than I know what to do with” like a miniature Bellagio fountain in your backyard.

2. Make the House Come Alive with Interior Staging

Decluttering and Depersonalizing

a bedroom with shelves and wardrobes

Goodbye, personality! Book in professional house movers on Movingle and move anything you into storage. Home buyers don’t want to see your lives in the house, they prefer to see theirs.

If it doesn’t spark joy in potential buyers’ wallets, it’s gotta go. That means sayonara to family photos, your impressive bottle cap collection, and anything that screams “actual humans live here.” Keep spaces minimal yet inviting.

Also, remember that buyers will look inside closets and storage spaces. Neat and organized spaces suggest ample storage and a well-maintained home.

Deep Cleaning

faceless person cleaning mirror with sponge
Photo by Karolina Kaboompics

A spotless home is crucial for making a good first impression, so make sure you include this in your home staging.

  1. Clean Every Surface: Ensure floors, walls, windows, and all surfaces are clean and free of dust and grime.
  2. Address Odors: Eliminate any unpleasant odors by thoroughly cleaning and using air fresheners or natural remedies like baking soda.
  3. Professional Cleaning: Consider hiring a professional cleaning service for a thorough deep clean, including carpets and upholstery.

High-Quality Furnishings

a neutral living room with cream sofa and oak coffee table

Fake it ’til you make it, remember that couch you’ve had since college? The one with the mysterious stain and a personality all its own? Yeah, it’s time to say goodbye and move it into storage.

Get a home stylist in, rent, or buy furniture that looks like it costs more than a year’s salary. Use statement pieces sparingly, we want “effortlessly wealthy,” not “trying too hard.”

Color Schemes and Lighting

a neutral living room

Choose sophisticated, neutral color palettes. We’re talking shades with names like “Whisper of Wealth” and “Trust Fund Taupe.”

Add pops of color through accessories and artwork, because even rich people need a little excitement in their lives. Use neutral decor elements like rugs, curtains, and bedding to maintain a cohesive and welcoming look.

Strategic lighting is important, we want a combination of natural light and artificial lighting so flattering it makes everyone want to sell their souls to swap houses.

Maximizing natural light makes spaces feel larger and more inviting.

  1. Open Curtains and Blinds: Ensure all windows are unobstructed to let in as much natural light as possible.
  2. Use Mirrors: Strategically place mirrors to reflect light and create the illusion of more space.
  3. Add Lighting: Use floor lamps, table lamps, and overhead lights to brighten darker areas. Soft, warm lighting creates a cozy atmosphere.

Kitchen and Bathrooms

a modern bathroom with double sinks

Where the magic (and money) happens, update hardware and fixtures to affordable options but look like they’re so modern and upscale they make regular faucets look like relics from the Stone Age.

A clean, modern kitchen can be a major selling point. Keep countertops clear of appliances and clutter. A bowl of fresh fruit or a vase of flowers can add a touch of color and life.

For the bathroom, add luxurious touches like high-end towels and fancy soaps. And get a house cleaner to make sure every surface is so spotless, even a baby can eat off it. Ensure every surface is immaculate, including grout and tiles.

3. Highlighting Key Features to Stand Out

a living room with a large stone fireplace

Unique Upcale Selling Points

Every house has something special, maybe it’s a quirky architectural detail or a view that doesn’t include your neighbor’s questionable lawn ornaments. Whatever it is, emphasize it like your sale depends on it (because it does).

Functional Spaces

Make it look like you work hard, play hard when it comes to home staging. Create a stylish and functional space that future home buyers can envisage themselves in.

  • Create defined areas for work, relaxation, and entertainment.
  • Stage a home office that makes corporate boardrooms look like kindergarten classrooms.
  • Set up reading nooks so cozy that buyers feel like they never want to leave.

Technology and Upgrades

a modern office space

Welcome to the future! When preparing your home for upscale selling, showcase any smart home features. If your house can’t predict your mood and adjust the lighting accordingly, is it even worth buying?

Highlight energy-efficient appliances and systems, because saving the planet is another selling point that home buyers are now looking for.

4. Adding the Final Touches to Upscale

Accessories and Artwork

a sage green living room with artwork

Use upscale accessories that make regular throw pillows look like burlap sacks. Hang artwork that makes people wonder if they’ve accidentally wandered into a museum.

In the bedroom, use clean, crisp bedding and add a few decorative pillows to make the bed look inviting. The key to interior staging is to create a home people can see themselves in, where they’re mentally placing their furniture and possessions before they sign on the dotted line!

Cars Fit for Your Home

blue coupe on road
Photo by Adrian Dorobantu

What’s the point of having a luxurious home if your car ruins the whole vibe? This is where we come in with our trusty car tranporters on Vehiclemove, helping you transport your old sedan to make room for a perfectly detailed Ferrari 458 Italia that you hired just to sit in your garage for the viewing.

And if you’re into classic cars, there are classic car enthusiasts who will gladly rent out their 1967 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray so you can show it off for a day at auction. Because nothing says “I am living my best life and you could if you buy this house!”

Scent and Sound

a sage green living room with lots of light

Aromatherapy is important in interior staging and can make your bank account sing! Go buy subtle, pleasant scents that can make you as calm as a cucumber when you walk in. Before showings, bake cookies or brew a pot of coffee to create a warm, welcoming aroma.

We want “luxury spa,” not “teenager discovered Axe body spray.” Inform your agent to play soft background music during viewings, think less elevator music, and more “I Summer in the Hamptons” playlist.

Final Walkthrough

a living room with dark green sofa and oak table

Do a final check to make sure you are happy with your home staging and everything’s perfect. Adjust lighting, temperature, and any small details. Display fresh flowers and a bowl of fruit in the kitchen, because nothing says “I have my life together” like perfectly arranged produce.

Go Forth and Sell Like the 1%

Home staging for upscale selling requires attention to detail and a willingness to invest in making it stand out from the crowd. By following this home staging guide, you can transform your humble abode into a palace fit for royalty or at least the wealthy and attract a price worthy of this crowd.

So, there you have it, folks, the recipe for turning your humble abode into a real estate unicorn. Remember, we’re not just selling a house here; we’re selling a lifestyle, a dream, a piece of the “I’ve made it” pie.

So go forth, style your house like it’s about to be featured in “Obscenely Rich Homes Monthly,” and watch as buyers trip over themselves to make an offer.

And if all else fails? Just remind potential home buyers that your house comes with the priceless ability to make their friends insanely jealous. That’s worth its weight in gold-plated, diamond-encrusted escrow fees all on its own that will make them up the auction in $100,000 increments. Good Luck with your sale!

Disclosure: Some of the links above are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a very small commission if you click through and make a purchase. These links help to pay the editorial costs of writing a blog. For more information, please read my full affiliate disclosure here.

I also use Artificial Intelligence Image generators to create some of my images. These are to show you examples of my ideas and inspiration when I cannot produce the real images myself.

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