Selling a home can be a very stressful experience. There are many things that need to be taken care of to get the home ready to sell. One that’s often overlooked but extremely important is staging your home to make it more presentable. Even if all of the major issues are fixed, you may have a difficult time selling it if you don’t stage it properly. If you don’t want to hire a professional to do it for you, then consider the following ideas.


General tidiness is important for when you show your home to potential buyers. Even though they know the house will be empty when they buy it, it makes a bad impression that’s hard to shake. Before showing your home go through each room, including the garage and make sure everything is in its proper place. You may want to throw away, donate, or sell items you no longer need.

Take down all the family photos

Prospective buyers need to be able to visualize the home being theirs. That’s hard to do when there’s a reminder on every wall that this home belongs to someone else. There’s a guilty feeling that comes with family photos because they may feel they’re taking a home that belongs to another family.

Put the nonessential furniture into storage

You can make your home feel larger without adding any square footage to it by simply getting rid of a few larger pieces. Leave the sofas and beds and other necessary items but put secondary items like end tables or bookshelves into storage. You want to show off as much floor space as possible, especially if its hardwood.

Deep clean the kitchen

The kitchen is the most important room in the home for prospective buyers so you really want to make sure it shines. Deep clean every crevice until not one speck of dirt or grime remains.

Make the closets look larger

Hide away or put into storage approximately half of everything in your closets. Even though the physical dimensions of the closet won’t change, it will make it look much larger if it’s not crammed full.


Prospective buyers are least likely to be put off by light, neutral colors like eggshell, beige, or pale yellow. Darker, more vibrant colors, on the other hand, are more likely to offend plus they make the rooms appear smaller than they actually are.

Baseboard radiator covers

Old baseboard radiators give your home a dated look and can be a huge turn off to potential buyers. For very little money and effort you can install baseboard radiator covers to make them look brand new again. Finishing touches like this one ensure that prospective buyers only have good vibes as they walk through your home.

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Is your home in serious need of redecorating but you know you don’t have the time to overhaul your home decor? Well not every interior decorating project requires a huge investment of time. The following interior decorating tasks take only a few minutes so you can work them into your busy schedule.

Properly display art

Most people have a tendency to decorate their homes with too many smaller pieces of artwork and no larger pieces. And when most people hang paintings or photographs, they’re up too high. The nice thing about larger pieces of art is that they’re naturally going to function as focal points for the space. Since they take up more space, you don’t need as many pieces. By selecting one larger piece of art for a space, you save a lot of time. As for hanging artwork on the walls, you want to hang them so that the center of the piece is at eye level. Eye level for a human of average height is approximately 57 inches.

Rethink your lighting

A properly lighted space requires multiple light sources putting out light from different heights and at different angles. If a room only has a single light fixture up from above, then you’ll need to use some floor or table lamps to illuminate the dark corners. Task lighting such as under-cabinet lighting for the kitchen or a desk lap for a home office or den are also quick additions.

Install some baseboard heater covers

Old baseboard heaters can be a huge eyesore for an otherwise attractive space. If your heaters are looking worn and showing their age, then you can quickly install some snap-on baseboard heater covers to immediately transform their look.

Rearrange the furniture

Sometimes redecorating doesn’t have to cost you anything. Sometimes all a room needs is a new layout of the larger pieces. People have a tendency to get locked into a certain arrangement of furniture despite the fact that moving things around only takes a few minutes of work. Even if the new arrangement isn’t objectively better in any way, simply changing things up can make it appear better to you.

Hang new curtains

Windows come in all shapes and sizes but the curtains we cover them with are usually limited to a handful of default sizes that are often ill-fitting. Instead of shopping for pattern first, pay attention to dimensions. A common mistake is not having enough volume--they have to be stretched out nearly all the way to cover the window. Purchasing extra panels so that there’s a nice ripple to them is an easy way to correct this. Another common mistake is having curtains that extend just beyond the dimensions of the window in all direction when larger, floor-to-ceiling curtains would add more drama.

Add in a few accessories

Inexpensive throws, pillows, and rugs are the easiest way to add color, texture, and pattern to a space. You can display them in seconds and easily swap them out when you want a new look without breaking the bank.

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Before you set out to redecorate your home, it’s always a good idea to start with a clean slate. That means getting rid of all the junk that’s been accumulating in your home for however long. Studies have shown that a living space free of clutter is beneficial to our psychological health plus it will allow your furnishings to stand out more since they aren’t surrounded by too much stuff.

Start with a goal

The minimalist approach to interior decorating has become extremely popular in recent years but it isn’t for everybody. Before you even start, have a clear goal in mind of what you want the finished product to look like. If you’re going for a minimalist look then you’ll have to be even more judicious about which things to keep and a lot more liberal about throwing stuff out. How much stuff is too much is up to you to decide.

One room at a time

Whatever you do, don’t attempt to declutter the entire home in a single go. If you try to do too much, you’re sure to get burned out quickly and that will only serve to discourage you the next time you consider starting again. Treat the decluttering process as a series of smaller projects where each room is a single project. Never do more than one room in a week unless you really feel up to it. Depending on how much stuff you have to get rid of, even the thought of one room might be too much for you. If that’s the case, set a timer on your phone for 20 or thirty minutes and spend just that much time each day. Even if you’re only getting through one drawer or box a day, it will feel like progress and you’ll have the stamina to keep going.

Be realistic

As you start to declutter you’ll inevitably stumble across things you haven’t used in years but you’ll be hesitant to throw it out. After all, maybe this is the year you’ll need it. Be honest with yourself and consider the likelihood you’ll use it and then get rid of it.

When you’re finished

When the clutter has been gone through and gotten rid of, a final step is to prep your home for redecorating. A white or off-white base is usually the easiest to work with. Repaint your interior, clean or replace your carpets, and install some white baseboard heater covers and you’re ready to introduce color and texture through furnishings that will really stand out.

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Spring is the ideal time for home improvement projects. The weather is just right for exterior projects and if you need to open up the doors and windows to get some fresh air in after doing some interior painting, your energy bills won’t skyrocket. But many homeowners won’t be remodeling this year because of the high costs for many remodeling projects. If you would like to do some remodeling and add some value to your home, but don’t have the financial means, you might want to consider one of the following six projects that are great for springtime and inexpensive as well.

1. Siding repair

Your home’s siding can take a beating so it’s always a good idea to assess the state of your siding each spring. Completely replacing the siding will cost a few thousand but as long as there’s no extensive damage, you can just repair the problem areas for a few hundred.

2. Paint the front door

Instead of spending several hundred on a new entry door. Give it a fresh coat of paint. It won’t cost more than a few bucks if you already have painting supplies and less than $100 either way.

3. Re-stain your deck

Now that the weather is warming up you’ll want to entertain guests on your deck. But after the winter there’s a good chance it could benefit from being re-stained. You can do it in a single weekend.

4. Clean out air ducts

After running your heat through the winter, chances are your air ducts could use a good cleaning. This is especially important if anyone in your home is allergic to dust. Plan on spending a few hundred dollars for a professional cleaning, maybe a little more if you have an older home and your ducts need some upgrades done.

5. Spruce up your front lawn

Boost your home’s curb appeal by paying some attention to your lawn which is probably looking pathetic after the winter. The cost to re-fertilize it is minimal and it’s a job you can do yourself if you want to save even more money.

6. Install baseboard heater covers

If you want to make some aesthetic upgrades to your home’s interior, there are few projects easier than installing baseboard heater covers. Simply measure how many feet of covers you need. Once it comes in the mail, simply snap them into place.

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First time homeowners will inevitably make mistakes when decorating their homes. There are simply too many pitfalls to possibly avoid all of them. But at the very least, you can avoid the following seven decorating mistakes that people continue to make despite many warnings.

1. Painting without testing the color

The paint color will never look exactly the same as it does on the paint can or sample. Ever. It might still be tolerable, or it might not be. Though you may be impatient to start painting, test out some different paints on the actual wall that you will be painting. Look at it throughout the day at varying levels of brightness to make sure it’s really the right color before you paint everything. This will prevent you being stuck with a color you don’t absolutely love or spending hundreds of dollars and many hours of time to redo it.

2. Shag rugs

Shag rugs are a mistake. Not matter how much you might think you want them, you don’t really want them. They shed, so you have to constantly vacuum up the stray fibers. Food particles and tiny odds and ends lodge themselves deep down in the carpet where even the most powerful vacuums can’t suck them up (though more powerful vacuums may pull out the carpet fibers themselves).

3. Marble countertops

Marble is the must-have material for upscale kitchens but quartz is a much better option. Marble is more porous which means over time stains will set in and it is also easier to scratch. While you may prefer the look of marble initially, within a few months you’d rather have quartz.

4. Aggressive color scheme

Before you buy that bright teal couch or paint your living room a vibrant purple, consider that for the rest of your life (or until you sacrifice the time and money to replace it) you’ll be stuck trying to match every décor item to it. If you want to incorporate bright colors into your interior design, find less expensive and more subtle ways to do it. Go with a neutral base like off-white, brown, charcoal, or black as you can match virtually any color to it. If you add color through accessories rather than main furnishings, they’re easy to swap out when you want to mix up the color scheme.

5. Purchasing all your furnishings in a weekend

While you’re understandably anxious to set about decorating your first home, the best interior designs evolve organically over a long period of time. Give yourself time in the space before you go out shopping. Be willing to live with fewer furnishings as you give yourself time to find all the right pieces for your home.

6. White carpet

If you have pets and or children and think you can keep your white carpets clean if you’re careful, you’re deluding yourself. If you’re a single germaphobe and you think you can keep your white carpets clean, you’re still deluding yourself. White carpet will become dirty over time whether you spill things on it or not because dirt settles it and slowly darkens it. That said, you don’t have to go with an ugly dark brown carpet either that will hide any and every stain.

7. Expensive solutions

There are often cheaper solutions to your problems if you give yourself time to think of them. If you don’t like the look of your kitchen cabinets, you don’t have to pay to have them torn out and then replaced with custom cabinets. You can replace the cupboard doors or simply repaint them. Even replacing the knobs and pulls can drastically change the look and it will barely cost anything. If you don’t like the look of old baseboard heaters, you can purchase baseboard heater covers rather than paying to replace them with central heating/air.

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There’s something about cold dreary weather being replaced with warmer, sunnier weather that makes us want to freshen up our homes. While you’re planning out your home improvement projects this spring, here are six interior decorating ideas you may want to try.

1. Invest in new artwork

New artwork can be a great way to liven up a space. Go with a large canvas of abstract art. If you’re the artsy type you may even consider creating your own artwork to hang on the wall. If you’re on a tight budget, you can sometimes find good quality art at thrift shops.

2. Bring vacation to you

Is there a place you’ve been dying to go on vacation to but you just haven’t been able to set aside the money or the time? If it’s not feasible to travel there anytime soon you can incorporate design elements from that destination into your home’s design. The internet is a great resource for getting interior design ideas for any region in the world.

3. Brighten things up

Spring means lots of sunshine and you want your home’s interior to reflect that. Swap out heavier curtains for sheer ones. Hang some mirrors across from windows to reflect more natural light throughout your home. If your home is naturally darker even in broad daylight due to fewer windows then you can do a lot to increase the artificial light in your home by replacing a simple light fixture with a chandelier or by swapping out darker lamp shades for lighter ones. You can also make a room appear brighter by simply incorporating a lot more of the color white into your interior design.

4. Incorporate organic elements

Since spring is when flowers start to bloom, it just makes sense to incorporate some flowers and other plant life into your interior design. You can arrange your own bouquets or have a florist do it.

5. Add visual interest to the walls

If you’re looking for a more dramatic change, one of the most cost effective ways to achieve it is to change the walls themselves. You can paint them a new color or if you’re really feeling brave, you can wallpaper them with a bold print. If you’re worried the paint color or wallpaper you’ve chosen is too overbearing, just paint or wallpaper a single accent wall. Go with removable wallpaper so it won’t be difficult to remove if you do change your mind.

6. Install baseboard radiator covers

Another inexpensive way to drastically change the look of any room in your home, and one that’s very easy, is to install baseboard radiator covers over your baseboard heaters. Simply measure how many feet of covers you need and order them. When they arrive, they simply snap in place so virtually any homeowner can do it themselves.

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Source: sfchronicle. com/homeandgarden/article/7-tips-to-refresh-your-home-for-spring-11058422.php



Many homeowners, and even some renters, choose to hire a professional to help them decorate their living spaces. After all, not everyone feels confident in their ability to decorate a home in a way that’s cohesive and attractive. These professionals are called interior designers or interior decorators and while these terms are often used interchangeably, they’re two different professions but with some things in common. So what’s the difference between the two and is it wise to hire one?

What sets apart an interior designer?

An interior designer will almost always have some kind of degree in design. Their specialty isn’t so much about decorating a finished space, but designing the entire space such as when first building a home or when remodeling it. They are a part of the process from blueprint to finished product and they handle many important tasks such as coordinating with architects/contractors, obtaining any required building permits, and making sure the project adheres to local building codes. While an interior designer isn’t required for a new home or remodeling project, an interior designer can help you think about the purpose of each room and consider the best structure and lighting to maximize the functionality and aesthetics of each room in your home.

Interior designers are also likely to belong to professional organizations and they most likely can get discounts from vendors who sell carpets, wood flooring, lighting fixtures, and other materials you’ll need in your home.

What can an interior decorator do?

Unlike interior designers, interior decorators don’t need a degree in design although some may have one. Interior decorators specialize in the finishing touches. They have an eye for scale, colors, and textures. Interior decorators typically start by listening to your ideas and looking at photographs you’ve found online to get an idea for your sense of style. Many will even accompany the homeowner to shop for accessories for the home.

Comparing costs

As you’d probably expect, an interior designer will cost more than an interior decorator. Expect to pay anywhere from $100 to $500 per hour for a professional designer depending on their level of education, years of experience, and their reputation for high-quality work. An interior decorator can cost anywhere from $50 to $250 per hour.

Should you hire one?

The answer will of course depend on your goals for your home. If you’re building a new home or planning a significant remodeling project and you want to get the most out of the design, the cost of an interior designer may be a good investment.

If you’re just trying to redecorate and would value the opinion of a person who specializes in it, then the cost for an interior decorator may be wise.

If you’re hoping to stretch your remodeling or decorating budget then you may want to forgo the expertise of a professional designer or decorator to get the most out of your remodeling or decorating budget. There are plenty of simple home improvement projects you can do on your own such as repainting or re-wallpapering. You can focus on simple upgrades like installing baseboard radiator covers, replacing light fixtures, upgrading kitchen and bathroom fixtures, or swapping out cabinet hardware. These kinds of upgrades won’t require the help of a professional but they’ll still make your home look like new.

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A home office is a place where you can let your personal style shine while still giving yourself a professional environment for doing your work. Here are some ideas you can use to decorate your home office.

1. Reading for kids

If your kids are going to be using your home office to do their homework, then designing a space that motivates them is definitely a good idea. Use bright, fun colors that get them excited to learn. You can put painted letters on the wall for the alphabet, and bookshelves stocked with books can help too. If you want the space to double as a reading area, add some comfortable seating, so your kids can spend hours in the space adventuring into books.

2. Multi-purpose space

One common challenge people have when decorating their office space is that a lot of people don’t have a full room to dedicate to an office. In fact, many people simply use nooks or corners of their home with a desk to work as their “office” area. This works just great.

The biggest thing to remember when you are using a multi-purpose space for your office is to try and find ways to separate it from the rest of the room still. Maybe you could paint the nook you are using in a different color or put up some wallpaper to differentiate the space. Even just one wall of a different color in your room may be enough to make the distinction between living room and office or bedroom and office.

3. Wallpaper vs paint

Wallpaper was really popular for a while, but then it became a bit of a taboo in the design world. Now, it is back again in all its glory, and people are doing amazing things with it. Wallpaper can really liven up your space without anyone having to spend hours hand painting a design on the wall. There are also many wallpapers available that are easy to remove later if you change your mind. Adding a little bit of design to your wall can really change the look of your office space and may make it feel less boring.

4. Baseboard heater covers

Get some baseboard heater covers to put over those old baseboard radiators to give it a brand new look. The covers are great because they snap into place very easily and make it as if the heaters blend in with the baseboards.

5. Floating shelves

A great way to add storage space and give you a beautiful design element is to add floating shelves to your office space. Instead of a giant, blank wall, you can put up these shelves. It creates functionality and a beautiful design element. It can also break apart a blank wall with nothing but a coat of paint on it.

6. Bold colors

In office settings, usually there are neutral colors so as to not offend anyone or say too much in the design. However, when you are in your own home, you have the ability to use big, bold, bright colors in your design. If you feel uncomfortable painting a whole wall in a bright color, then you can choose to add the bold colors in your design elements such as cushions and artwork.

7. Long desk

Rather than one small desk big enough for one person to work at, you can get a really long desk that multiple people can sit at while working. In an office space, that might be uncomfortable because people are often private about their work. However, in your home, it might be nice to be able to collaborate more easily with your children or spouse or even coworkers on projects you may be doing. A long desk space with multiple seating options is the perfect design element to add to any office.

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Old houses are unique and have a lot of character in them. It is a great place to live if you find the right home that doesn’t have a lot of problems to fix. However, you still might want to put a little bit of work into upgrading a few things for yourself. Here are 7 home upgrades you can put unto your place that won’t take much time.

1. Add a stair runner

While the hardwood on your stairs is probably beautiful, it can get really slippery which is a problem, especially if you have little kids. Instead of covering it up completely with carpet, you can get a stair runner or make one for yourself. Plus, with a stair runner you can change it out anytime you want with something else, and there are a lot of styles you can choose from.

2. Baseboard heater covers

The modern-day convenience of forced heating and air is really nice, but you probably won’t get that with an older home. Instead, you’ll have baseboard radiator heaters. And unfortunately, they are necessary to keep you warm in the winter. But you can get baseboard heater covers that simply snap into place and completely update the look of your room.

3. Paint everywhere

Whether it is an old house or not, you probably will want to consider a few paint jobs around your house. You can paint the walls, your cabinets, or even the door. A fresh coat of paint can really individualize your home and makes it feel clean and new again. Make sure you remove the old paint before you get started. In a lot of older homes, there are so many layers of paint on the walls that it makes it look cakey instead of like a fresh paint job.

Be warned that in older homes there are often problems with lead in the paint, so be careful to follow safety precautions when removing old paint.

4. Caulking everywhere

It is always a good idea to check all the caulking throughout your home when you buy an older house. It can quickly split apart letting in bugs from the outdoor or letting in water from the sink. Head around your home with a caulking gun for a quick and easy project that will take an hour or two but will ultimately protect your home. It is a worthwhile project for sure.

5. Refinish things

Part of why you bought an older home is for the character that comes with it. Refinish things in the home instead of replacing them including the hardware, the doors, the floors, etc. If it looks like it would be a really cool design element if it was just brand new, then you can refinish it and make it feel like it was brand new the whole time.

6. Add a bathroom vent

The vent in your bathroom is not just so people can’t hear you going to the bathroom as well or to get rid of stink. In fact, it is mostly there to help ventilate the room and prevent mold growth. Because of this, it is a really good idea to install a bathroom vent in your older home. It will help keep your family from getting sick and protect your bathroom from having to be remodeled.

7. Put in ceiling fans

A ceiling fan is really nice because it circulates the air in the room and helps maintain a regular temperature. In the summer, it can help cool the rooms while in the winter, it can actually help circulate the warm air around the room. Adding fans in your rooms is a really great project to do in your older home.

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Choosing the flooring in your kitchen is a lot of work. You want to pick something aesthetically pleasing but also want it to be functional for what you will be doing in the room. And if you have children, that’s a whole other thing to consider. Here are the top 3 kitchen flooring options people are picking from right now and the advantages/disadvantages to them.


The most common flooring option people choose is laminate because it is really inexpensive. These days, you can pick laminate that looks like a lot of different things, but many people choose to get laminate that looks like wood. Laminate is great because it is fairly resistant to water, but you have to be careful because water that falls into the cracks between slats can cause the flooring to buckle up a bit.

A lot of people that have kids choose laminate because it is softer than tile for when your kids fall but it isn’t as easy to damage as real hardwood. Plus, it is so inexpensive that it is easier to replace later when the kids are older with nicer flooring.


  • Easy to replace one piece at a time
  • Inexpensive
  • Huge variety of options


  • Easy to dent
  • Cannot be refinished


Another versatile option, tile is popular in kitchens because it is really good with water. You don’t have to worry about water getting into the cracks and damaging the floors, and you can make any kind of look you want. One really popular style right now is to make tiles look like slats of hardwood, but it is much sturdier and colder.

If you have kids, the one concern with tile is that it is so hard and could easily do more harm to your child than your child can do to it. It’s great because it can withstand all the damage children do to homes, but it is so hard that you might end up needing a trip to the emergency room after your kid falls and hits their head.


  • Doesn’t scratch or dent easily
  • Easy maintenance
  • Huge variety of tilework options


  • Issues with grout color and cleanliness
  • Cold and hard under feet
  • Expensive to install or replace

Hardwood floors

One of the most popular options for kitchen flooring, and home flooring in general, is hardwood floors. There’s nothing a potential home buyer loves more than to see beautiful hardwood floors and baseboard heater covers giving a beautiful, finished look to the space. Because it is so much softer than the other flooring options, it is good on your back when standing on it all day, and it is a little easier for kids if they fall and hit their heads on it. However, it is difficult to maintain perfection with hardwood floors.


  • Lasts forever
  • Increases home value
  • Can be sanded down and restained with damage


  • Expensive
  • Sensitive to water
  • Prone to scratches

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