Home Staging Checklist: Tips to Sell Your Home Fast

Want to sell your house quickly and for a good price? Discover our comprehensive home staging checklist.

Real Estate
June 8, 2024
Home Staging Checklist: Tips to Sell Your Home Fast

In 2024, the average home in America is on the market for 50 days — significantly longer than a few years prior when a home may sell in as little as a few weeks, but far lower than a decade prior when it could regularly take up to 100 days to sell a home.1

Staging your home is another strategy that –– when leveraged effectively –– can dramatically reduce the time it takes to sell your home. While some home sellers may not want to pay a home staging cost, it can be a worthy investment. By taking on a little home improvement, you can help your home sell for more and in less time. Below, we’ve created a full checklist of staging tips to sell your home faster. 

The Importance of Staging Your Home for Sale

When selling a home, you’re effectively entering into a competition with every other seller and every other property. To “win” this competition, your home will need to stand out in some way –– either in value, amenities, or appearance. Staging your home can add to the property’s appeal while accentuating its best features, appealing to the largest number of potential buyers. 

Home staging showcases your home in its best light, helping it sell faster and maybe even at a higher price. But home staging can also have a positive psychological impact on shoppers. By creating a neutral, calming, welcoming environment through staging, you can entice home buyers to take a closer look at your property –– or even visualize their lives in the space. 

Executed effectively, home staging can have a huge impact on the process of selling a home, making it a more profitable, painless, and efficient endeavor. As we’ll explain below, there are several simple steps you can take to stage your home successfully.  

Declutter and Depersonalize: The First Steps

If there’s just a single staging strategy you can adhere to, it should be to declutter. And real estate professionals agree. A 2023 study from the National Association of Realtors showed that half of all professionals surveyed recommended their clients declutter –– even if they didn’t opt to stage their homes.2 So, why is decluttering so important? Simply put, decluttering helps potential buyers focus on the property itself rather than the personal items and affectations that can be distracting. 

These personal touches may be what makes your house feel like home to you, but to home buyers, they can be obstacles standing in the way of visualization. By depersonalizing your home, you make it a blank canvas for buyers, who are then free to imagine their own lives in the space. This means removing family photos, personal keepsakes, and distinctive style choices that reflect your personal taste. The aim is to create a neutral environment that appeals to a broad audience.

Decluttering and depersonalizing are some of the most valuable aspects of staging, and luckily also some of the easiest. 

Room-by-room Steps for Decluttering and Depersonalizing

When decluttering, move from one room to the next. This will ensure that every room in the house is as tidy as possible. Consider these tips:

  • Kitchen – Your entire space should be cleaned when staging your home, but a spotless kitchen especially is a major selling point. Keep all surfaces clean, put away small appliances, and organize pantry and cupboard interiors for optimal visual aesthetic. There may be no award for organizing your spice cabinet, but it can’t hurt when staging your home. 
  • Bedrooms – It may seem reasonable to retain some individuality in your bedroom area, but depersonalizing this space can be every bit as vital. Remove any unnecessary furniture. Keep decor and bedding neutral, and organize any closet/storage areas to emphasize the amount of usable space. 
  • Living Areas – The living room is one of the most important areas when it comes to home staging –– and will likely need the most work to stage effectively. Do your best to neutralize the decor by covering up loud shades of paint, removing wallpaper, and covering up patterned furniture that may appeal to a specific taste.3 Be sure also to put away any family photos, memorabilia, and personal items that can add both clutter and unwanted personalization. 

The Power of First Impressions: Entryway Staging

When staging your home, consider the power of a good first impression and focus on the first steps a potential buyer will take in your home. Elevate your entryway by ensuring it’s well-lit –– either by natural light or a soft, welcoming artificial source –– and spotless. A visually appealing shoe storage solution can help keep the space clean and clutter-free, but shoes should be kept out of sight, if possible. Less isn’t always more, however: The addition of a side table with fresh flowers can make your entryway more inviting while adding a fresh scent that buyers will later associate with your home. 

A great home staging tip is, as you stage your entryway, you may want to adopt an outsider’s perspective. Walk into your home as a buyer or real estate agent might, examining the sights, smells, and your immediate feelings around the space. This is likely where potential buyers will make their first connection with your home, so do all you can to help foster this connection through effective staging. 

Highlighting Your Home’s Best Features

You may be competing with other sellers, but there’s a good chance your home has something that theirs doesn’t. Or, at the very least, you can use effective staging to showcase your home’s features better than others. Before you begin the process of staging your home, take stock of what it is that makes your home stand out. Does it have a fireplace worth gathering around? Bay windows or the perfect reading nook? Whatever it is, make sure you’re leveraging staging to make it the focal point of the room. 

This is another place where thinking like a prospective buyer will come in handy. While you may have a place in your heart reserved for certain areas of your home, buyers are typically looking for a handful of key features: laundry rooms, front porches or patios, and kitchens with ample storage and room for dining.4 If your home has these major selling points, staging can help you play them up even more. 

Refreshing Your Space: Small Upgrades, Big Impact

By now, you may be feeling like your home will need quite a bit of work to sell quickly and above asking price –– and like staging is just one more item on your to-do list. But even the smallest of upgrades and repairs can significantly impact a buyer’s first (or second, or third) impression. Quick fixes like repairing holes or cracks in the walls and repairing leaky faucets can be evidence enough that the home has been well-loved. But there are even easier ways to give your home a visual lift worthy of a closer look. 

Consider these simple methods of refreshing your home’s appearance –– and some other proven ways of increasing your home’s value

  • A New Coat of Paint – Covering up bright-colored accent walls can help with staging your home, but a fresh coat can help anywhere it’s needed. If any paint is cracking or discolored, apply a fresh coat to ensure it doesn’t distract from your home’s appeal –– especially around areas you’re trying to emphasize. 
  • Upgraded Hardware – Handles, knobs, and drawer pulls can wear over time. In 20 minutes and with a single tool, you can replace these high-touch fixtures with elegant upgrades and modernize any space they’re in.  
  • Curtains and Blinds – One way to eliminate visual distractions in living areas is to make sure windows are draped in attractive, neutral coverings that match the rest of the room’s decor. This allows the living space and its myriad features to be the true star of the show while simultaneously depersonalizing your home. 
  • Fresh Landscaping – Potential buyers shouldn’t see your home as a project, and an unkempt lawn can give off that impression. But while landscaping can add a visual lift to your home, how far you decide to go is up to you. This can be as simple as a freshly cut lawn or as complex as a well-manicured garden. It is valuable to know how to improve curb appeal to sell your home quicker — and at a higher sale price.

Final Touches Before Listing Your Home

You’ve checked every item off your home staging checklist –– decluttering, depersonalizing, and doing everything in your power to position your home in its best light. Now, you can list your home and benefit from your extra effort. 

But to make sure that the hard work of staging your home pays off, there are some final items you’ll want to take care of. Professional photography, for one, can help capture the full essence of your staged home, ensuring its allure translates to an online listing. You’ll also want a listing description that speaks to the aspects of the home you’re hoping to highlight. 

A skilled real estate agent can help with these tasks –– which is fortunate because listing your home is just the beginning. Negotiation and back-and-forth with prospective buyers are common when selling a home, but thoughtful home staging can give you a strong leg to stand on through this process. 

Truehold: A Seamless Selling Experience

Staging your home can help you sell your home faster and net you a larger return on your investment, but it can’t help you avoid some of the time-consuming steps in the sales process that stand between you and your home equity. Fortunately, Truehold can. 

With Truehold’s sale-leaseback, you eliminate the need for home staging, online listings, and open houses by selling directly to us. You receive your home equity in as little as a month and then continue living in your home as a renter –– either while you shop for your next property or for as long as you choose and continue paying rent. 

Want to learn more about the faster, easier alternative to selling your home? Connect with one of our trusted advisors for more information on Truehold’s sale-leaseback and get an offer on your home within 24 hours.   


  1. HomeLight. How Long Does It Take to Sell a House? (2024). https://www.homelight.com/blog/how-long-does-it-take-to-sell-a-house/ 
  2. National Association of Realtors. 2023 Profile of Home Staging. https://www.nar.realtor/sites/default/files/documents/2023-profile-of-home-staging-03-30-2023.pdf 
  3. HomeLight. How to Depersonalize Your House for Sale Without Losing Its Charm. https://www.homelight.com/blog/depersonalize-the-house/
  4. Kiplinger. 13 Home Features Today’s Buyers Want Most. https://www.kiplinger.com/personal-finance/shopping/home/603217/home-features-todays-buyers-want-most 
Lucas Grohn headshot
Written by
Lucas Grohn
Senior Manager of Sales at Truehold - A Thought-Leader in Real Estate
Lucas Grohn brings over a decade of real estate expertise to his role, where he guides a team dedicated to innovative sales strategies. Known for his thought leadership and diverse experience, from managing brokerage operations to training agents at top firms, Lucas covers a broad span of real estate content for Truehold.
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Truehold's blog is committed to delivering timely and pertinent insights in real estate and finance, purely for educational and informational purposes. Crafted by experts, our content is thoroughly reviewed to guarantee its accuracy and dependability. Although designed to enlighten and engage, our articles are not intended as financial advice and should not be the sole basis for financial decisions. Our stringent editorial practices ensure the integrity of our content, empowering our readers with valuable knowledge.

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