Home-staging is making the move from television shows to the mainstream with more and more property owners clearing out and dressing up their homes in order to sell.
It's all about making your home as inviting as possible so other people can imagine themselves living there.
Some might see it as an unnecessary expense but Paul McKenzie from realestate.co.nz insists that in a competitive real estate market, home-staging is an vital tool to help you get the best price possible.
"Home staging is very important. It's a part of marketing the home and getting it ready for sale."
He explains the psychology behind home-staging and why it helps to entice buyers for your home.
Accordign to McKenzie, de-personalising and de-cluttering your
home "helps potential buyers see where they can put their own
personal touches and where they can imagine their own
But does staging your home for sale actually help achieve a better price?
While there haven't been any studies here in New Zealand, McKenzie points to international feedback which shows the advantages of home-staging.
"Overseas research indicates that home staging and de-cluttering and depersonalising a home can add a lot more value to a home when you're selling it."
If you have the budget, professional home-staging companies
provide both the furniture and decor to help you stage your home,
as well as expert advice on making your home appealling to
But if that's too expensive there is the option of doing it yourself. Creating your own cushions can be an easy way to add a pop of colour to your home and there are plenty of budget-friendly homeware stores where you can pick up inexpensive finishing touches.
At the very least, if you're looking at putting your home on the market, real estate experts like Paul McKenzie recommend a thorough de-clutter before you attempt to sell your home.
As he points out, "you wouldn't sell a dirty car to someone, you'd generally clean it out first."