Staging our condo for the real estate market, making it so attractive that buyers will practically salivate, is going to be my creative challenge for the next couple of weeks.

There will be plenty of grunt work and mental calisthenics, too, but I thrive on this stuff!

Closing was this morning.We left the lawyers' office, had a celebratory lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant, went home to change into work clothes, loaded up some tools and equipment, and dove into our new project.

First things first

First task for me is getting all the wallpaper down. It’s in both baths, on two walls of the kitchen, and in an open closet off the living room which I’m calling the dry bar.

The dry bar is a room that doesn’t make sense, the perfect sort of space that benefits from staging.

I don’t know what the builder had in mind. He put in some upper shelves, some lower cabinets and a laminate countertop. A TV alcove? Little library? Storage room?

I’ve decided to stage it as a party headquarters because it is near both the fireplace and the door to the deck.

Help buyers imagine good times

I think people like to envision themselves in the happiest, most relaxing situations when they are shopping for a home.

If you watch any of the television shows featuring actual people looking at homes to buy, it’s eye-opening. I know these shows are heavily prescripted and edited, but I still think much of the reactions are genuine. So I think anyone with a home on the market can learn some things from watching typical buyers touring typical homes on HGTV.

Women often make comments about whether the kitchen’s center island is big enough for a holiday buffet, or if the soaking tub has jets. Men want to know where the high def plasma screen will go, and if the patio is big enough to accommodate all their friends.

They are both picturing the best of times. That’s why I plan to turn a nonsensical door-less closet into a tease of happy times when they live here. Here are the things that I have collected for this tiny room.

Essentials for the dry bar

  • Three bottles of my favorite mineral water  
  • A small basket with some fake lemons
  • Four wine goblets on a wicker tray
  • Four beer mugs
  • A bunch of matching plastic tumblers that look nice and sparkly
  • An ice bucket
  • A three-bottle wine rack and three empty wine bottles
  • A fancy decanter filled with faux brandy (tea) and two small, stemmed gasses
This much stuff sounds like a lot of detail to cram into a small space, but I want househunters to linger in that corner, so I think it’s a good call.

I encourage you to look around the home you want to sell, and find some space that can be used to capture the imagination of buyers.

Need more tips for staging your home on the market? Download my eBook, DIY Home Staging Tips to Sell Your Home Fast and for Top Dollar. You'll learn all the tips and tricks tomake your homestaging projects easy and economical.