A home should serve as an escape from the stresses of the outside world. It should feel as if it is an extension of oneself—somewhere we can just be. Want more articles like this? Create an account today to get BiggerPocket's best blog articles delivered to your inbox Sign up for free For many of us, personal identity is intricately tied to the home. From the art hung on our walls to pictures of loved ones to details like paint colors, decor is a form of self-expression. If your goal is to flip the property in a sale, consider taking advantage of home staging as opposed to an expensive remodel. Countless real estate agents believe staging helps buyers visualize a property as a future home. Proper staging encourages prospective buyers to walk through a home rather than just scroll through photos on the internet. Staging will also help sellers maintain their budget. Since staging plays a large role in the real estate game, understanding ideal home staging techniques is essential. Related: How to Avoid Renovation Mistakes on Your Rental Properties Home Staging Tips: 6 Things to Consider Inspire People to Visualize Their Future Home As prospective buyers view your home, a question they will undoubtedly be asking themselves is, “Can I see myself living here?” Your job is to make their answer a definitive yes! Use visual cues and consider the following points, as well, to guarantee your staged home is attracting potential buyers in all the right ways. Emphasize the Family Factor Reiterate the family-friendliness of your property when showing the home to potential buyers. Ask if they usually host family gatherings or holiday parties; and if they do, consider referring to extra bedrooms as “guest rooms” or the like. In addition, spark their imagination in terms of future party planning by showcasing items like a pool table or barbecue pit within your staging. Ask potential buyers if they could see their family enjoying the space. By inquiring about their loved ones, you’ll create more of a connection and influence them to think about their family thriving there. Leave Room for Imagination Stage tactically by leaving some empty space. Use your staging to inspire the buyer, and avoid making them feel like they are a guest in a stranger’s home. By maintaining some empty space, you subconsciously encourage audiences to envision adding their own style to the area. Promote a deeper level thinking by asking them outright how they imagine decorating and using certain rooms. Stroll Around the Neighborhood Whether it’s a local park or a community swimming pool, the desirability of a home can be heightened by showing off the positive aspects of the neighborhood. The more time prospective buyers spend looking at the home, the more time there is for them to ask questions about the home and the more opportunity you have to sell them on all the great things about the property. Answer questions specifically and honestly to help secure the sale. Take Advantage of Scent Marketing Because of its strong ties to memory, scent is considered one of the most powerful of all the senses. Hospitality industries, such as hotels, retail stores, and banks, are known for their use of “scent marketing.” According to studies, customers feel obliged to stay longer in environments with certain scents. Rather than relying on artificial recreations of pleasant smells, try mowing the lawn an hour before showings or even baking a batch of cookies for a homey, sweet scent. And of course, fresh flowers will add to both the smell and the look of the home. These pleasant everyday scents are likely to remind the potential buyer of happy home-based memories. Display Fun Activities Set up activities to help your prospective buyers further imagine themselves and their families utilizing the space to its full potential. Whether it’s art supplies in the sunroom or a volleyball net in the backyard, setting up activities will help potential buyers envision using the area for their own needs and passions. Related: 7 Smart Practices to Speed Up the Sale of Your Home 3 Home Staging Mistakes While staging is almost always an asset, make sure to avoid its pitfalls. Avoid these common staging practices and dodge losing a potential buyer. Not Keeping the Peace Helping your buyers see the home’s full potential through the use of decoration is key—but be sure to keep everything respectful and in good taste to avoid offending anyone. Like the dinner table, religion and politics should not be a point of discussion. Displays of weaponry, taxidermy, and any instances of nudity—even in art—should be removed for staging purposes. By avoiding art that is controversial or confrontational, you will steer clear of alienating anyone and appeal to a wider, family-friendly audience. Not Maintaining Balance In the case of staging a home, less is not always more. If a home looks barren, viewers are more likely to notice small flaws within the area. And without enough decor, the space may give off sterile, cold energy. Balance is essential. Too empty of a space can seem bleak and less-than-homey, but over-decorating can make a guest feel out-of-place. Finding the perfect in-between will help the house get more positive attention from buyers. Not Appearing Neutral While the previous owners may have loved their chartreuse-colored walls, chances are the next buyers will not. If your goal is to flip the home, keep the wall colors light and neutral to appeal to the majority. Tones like grey, beige, and white are your best bets. Final Notes Home is about feeling safe and connected to those you care about. Home is a place you want to raise your children, as well as a place you want to show your parents. Help prospective buyers imagine their own spin on the space, highlight these feelings of warmth, and emphasize family to create the perfectly staged home. Do you have any home staging pro tips to add to this list? Or anything else those looking to sell should avoid when showing a home? Share them in the comment section!