GUEST POST: Budget-Friendly Home Staging Tips for Busy Families

Today I’m excited to share my first ever Guest Article by Kristin Louis of the Parenting with Kris Blog! Kristin reached out to us and shared her story…

“We sold our home recently and I lived to tell the tale! It was the first time my husband and I had gone through the home selling process since having our kids. And although there was a learning curve, we managed to create a good system for prepping our home for sale and keeping it spotless and clutter-free for showings.”

I think she has some really good tips to share with us, so let's dive in!

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In the past few years, home staging has gone from something only the wealthy could pay for to somewhat of an expected part of the home-selling process. However, professional staging remains expensive, often costing upwards of $7,000. It can also feel extremely complicated for busy families with kids; even if your home is only on the market for a few days, keeping it spotless for that amount of time is a tall order. 

It is possible to stage your home on a budget and in a way that doesn’t grind your family life to a halt. Here are a few ways to achieve this balance.

Focus on Small, High-Impact Renovations

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Spending a lot of money on pricey renovations is a risk. As long as your house doesn’t need any major repairs or updates, you can stick to smaller, cheaper, high-impact upgrades. 


For example, a fresh coat of paint in a neutral color can do wonders, especially in brightly colored or wallpapered children’s rooms. You can also boost your curb appeal with a limited budget: painting the door, changing the handle, adding potted plants and flowers, and getting a fresh house number are all great changes you can make for around $100 to $500.

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The easiest way to save money on renovations is to search for online discounts and cash back offers at your favorite retailer. For example, look for a Target coupon today that could save you some money the next time you need to pick up some home improvement supplies.

Start Packing

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One of the most important parts of home staging is decluttering. You want to give the impression of an airy, relaxing home with plenty of storage. For this, most people will need to get rid of most of the stuff in the house. It is especially important to get rid of personal items, which make it hard for the buyer to see themselves in the house. 

Luckily, your move means that you are going to have to sort through and pack everything in the house anyway. Combining decluttering and packing is an easy way to stage the house, and it also gets you started on the moving process. 

First, determine what you need to live in the house for a few weeks. Everything else should be either donated, sold, or packed away. Kids can, of course, keep some of their toys, but they have to all fit in a toy chest or dedicated box.


A few ways to keep this process budget-friendly include:

  • When selling items, first figure out if it is worth your time. One way to make it worth your time is to bundle smaller, low-value items, or to host a garage sale.  

  • Donate to charities that do free donation pickups. You can find these charities on websites such as DonationTown.org.

  • Collect old packing boxes from work, friends, and family, instead of buying new ones

If you need to store boxes, there are ways to save money on a storage unit. In particular, look for companies that offer a months’ free storage.

Set Up a Daily Cleaning Schedule

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Now comes the hardest part: maintaining the work you’ve done. The decluttering stage will have made it easier to keep the house tidy, but you still need to contend with the messes of daily life. The simplest way to do this is to have a daily cleaning schedule. This room-by-room checklist is enough to keep all areas of your house spick and span, and it doesn’t take very long.

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You can save lots of money on cleaning by using normal household products instead of chemical ones. Homemade household cleaners use items like vinegar, lemon, herbs, and baking soda to achieve great results at a fraction of the price. 

The secret to home staging without paying for a professional is to make small, simple changes. Your house probably doesn’t need much work to be in selling shape — it just needs to be refreshed, tidied, and decluttered. You’ll be surprised at how little you actually need to live in the short term, and how much easier it is to maintain the house with the clutter out of the way.

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To learn more about Kris and her other wonderful articles click below to visit her website!