Brick Underground's best advice for staging your NYC apartment to sell

By Nathan Tempey  | April 26, 2018 - 9:00AM

A condo for sale in the new full-service building at 550 Vanderbilt Ave. in Brooklyn.

Nest Seekers International/StreetEasy

Spring is peak apartment selling season in New York City, so if you're looking to sell this year, hopefully you've started the process already, and if you've gotten that far, odds are you've started having to think about staging. Professional staging isn't cheap—it can run anywhere from several thousand dollars to over $70,000 depending on the size of your apartment—but it can bring in big returns. One stager estimates that good staging can add double the amount you spend on it to the purchase price.

For more of what you need to consider when setting out to make your apartment ready for it's closeup, here's a collection of our best advice for apartment staging.

Whether you're hiring someone or doing it yourself, think of the foot traffic patterns in your apartment. Where will someone touring your apartment naturally want to walk, and how can you make the view nicer for them? That is just one of our staging tips to sell your place for top dollar.

You've lived in your apartment awhile. At this point, you probably don't notice the scuffs on your baseboards or the mildew marks up in the corner of the ceiling where you had that leak one time. The person seeing your apartment for the first time will. That's why repainting is just one of our top tips for staging your apartment like a pro.

Leaving your personal items on display, failing to match your appliances, and trying too hard with theatrical touches are just some of the 10 big staging mistakes that can cost sellers a sale. Hiring a professional photographer, or at the very least using a professional-quality camera, is another thing not to skimp on when staging. No one can see the glory of your redone floors in that shadowy cellphone photo.

Setting up your apartment for showings and preparing it to be photographed for a listing involve some of the same steps, but each has its own specific considerations. For example, using different types of light bulbs in different sockets will be more glaringly obvious in pictures. Here are six pro tips for getting your apartment camera ready.

Have a pet at home? Just like with yourself and your belongings, you're going to want to make the pet and its accoutrements scarce during the showing process. Here's a rundown of how to go about that.

All of this sounds good in principle, but what does it look like in practice? For a look inside the process, here's a pro stager walking us through a three-bedroom job in Carroll Gardens. The apartment ultimately sold for more than the asking price.



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