Home Staging -- Does the Garage NEED to be Staged, too?



Hello, home makers!!

Let's remember the privilege we have of making our little spots in the world
sweeter, better, safer places to live in!
We are the inspiration in our homes.

Our hands fashion its beauty.
Our hearts make its love.

We are the nest-builders.
Let's make them soft, pretty, and comfortable!




When preparing a house to sell, the garage is usually the last room on people's minds.

It's not usually considered as important as creating curb appeal or updating the kitchen.
But, a neat, well-organized, and clean garage tells a buyer
that the home has been maintained,
since this is the space where the maintenance items are kept.

Typically, the garage and basement areas are the most important rooms to men.
If you've guessed that the kitchen and bathrooms are most essential to women,
you'd be correct!
(I do realize that roles are reversed sometimes: a man wants a chef's kitchen; 
the woman wants a place to use power tools.)

You must not and cannot simply ignore your garage when staging it,
or you'd be ignoring 1/2 the buyers that come through at your showings.

If the garage is as appealing to the men buyers as the kitchen is to women buyers,
you'll soon see a SOLD sign on the front lawn!


As a Home Stager, I often get asked by a seller during the pre-staging walk-through
if they can pack-as-they-go and simply store their moving boxes in the garage.
After all, they reason, the buyers KNOW they will be packing and moving out.


I tell them that the garage is not a storage unit.
It should be as attractive as any other room in the house.
It does no good to de-clutter the house, only to clutter the garage.
Who can imagine a working or parking in here?




If you have a double car garage, a portion of it could be set up as a work shop area.
It doesn't have to be elaborate or expensive.
Even a set of sawhorses with a piece of 3/4" plywood set on top 
would serve as a nice work space.
A pegboard (this is cheap and easy to install) comes in handy to store tools.
It keeps the area organized and tidy looking.

There is a potential selling point on the back wall, here, behind the debris.


There it is!


This area even makes ME want to create something!



Adequate lighting in the garage is an extra enticement for buyers.
A well-lit area invites the viewer to stay a while
and imagine himself tinkering in the room.
Hang three-pronged electrical light fixtures from chains
and plug it into the ceiling receptacle socket,
if your garage is in need of more illumination.


The floor of the garage should be clean.
I don't mean "cleared off", I mean clean. As in: swept, washed, and better yet, painted.
You know you park your car in here, but a buyer shouldn't be reminded of that
by seen oil stains and debris associated with it.

This is how one seller's garage looked before it got cleared, cleaned, and coated with new paint. 


After.

 (This house was being sold unoccupied, so everything was moved to the sellers' new home.)

Another before view.


And after. 


A car can fit in here, now!
Or a workbench!


The leftover interior paint stayed on the shelves for the new buyer.
How I store my leftover and touch-up paint HERE.
And if you look closely, you can see that they left plenty of pegboard so the buyers can design
a work area of their own.
This home with this pretty garage sold in a week, with several offers, by the way.




Does the garage NEED to be staged, too?
Absolutely.
Positively.
Definitely.
Yes!


If you are planning on listing your home, start by staging it, and put the garage on your to do list.
Here's what you can do to make your garage as welcoming as any other room in the house:

  • Purge things you don't use or need. Purge again. How to purge without guilt HERE.
  • Gather and separate all your tools into categories and store neatly in bins on shelves, if possible.
  • Put painting supplies in another larger bin.
  • Neatly store necessary current-season yard tools and equipment in one area.
  • Remove all bikes, stored toys, boxes, and athletic equipment.
  • Pack up the leftovers and store them off-site. 
  • Sweep, remove grease from the floor, cobwebs and bug droppings. Garage cleaning article by Lowe's HERE.
  • Paint the floor with concrete paint. Gray is an excellent color.
  • Wipe down the appliances: washer/dryer, water heater, furnace, air conditioner.
  • Replace your garage door opener if it isn't working well.
  • Inspect the springs and latches to ensure they are in good condition. Oil anything that squeaks.
  • Replace garage door, if necessary.
  • Keep your cars out of the garage during showings.
  • Remove pets, their food, their litter boxes, bed, and pens.


At the end of THIS POST,
you can see my garage and how I organize some of our storage boxes.


Jaime

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13 comments:

  1. You need to come live with me for about a month!!!! I am getting two houses ready to put on the market, and I need one of them to sell yesterday!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Where do you live? I'll think about it! <3

      Delete
  2. Great post, wonderful reminder to keep the garage as beautiful as the inside. Now...just to get mine to look like the after pictures!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great post, wonderful reminder to keep the garage as beautiful as the inside. Now...just to get mine to look like the after pictures!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Audra!
      Hi!
      Garages are a beast to clean in the summer. It's too hot.
      I purge and clean mine in the Fall and in the Spring...
      if you wait till either of those seasons, too, no one will think you any less homemaker-ish!
      *wink.
      Love ya!
      ~me

      Delete
  4. We're not moving, selling, or staging, but I'm still working on my garage. There's just something about walking through a clean one that makes me feel good. What I really need to work on right now is the floor. Ours shows too many spillage stains from a car aptly named "Flo" being parked in it.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Leslie -- I love this post. It's packed with helpful reminders. And your photos really drive the points home! I'm posting a link to it on my Facebook Group page. And Tweeting it as well. Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This is such a great blog post! Very good information! Appreciating the hard work you put into your site. It’s awesome blog.
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    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi Leslie, so true! The garage is often over looked and it's such a shame because it can massively improve the curb appeal of your home. If you are going to replace the garage door I would suggest a roller garage door as it helps to save on space and is very secure.

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  8. Wow it really does make such a difference. What's the point of having someone build a garage if you aren't even using it to it's full potential? Great work!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. What great advice! As a Realtor I constantly see the exact scenario you just described. Your comment is dead on -- what the kitchen is to a woman, the garage is to a man. (Or occasionally the other way around!)

    I'm sharing this with my clients!

    ReplyDelete

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