It isn’t always obvious to buyers how the spaces in a home are intended to be utilized. Solid staging can help, but there’s good reason to take the extra steps to stage the outdoor “living room,” as well.

Outdoor spaces are quickly becoming one of the most coveted home features for buyers. They expand living space without expensive renovations, offer a relaxing respite from everyday stress, provide a safe place for kids and pets to play, and create an oasis for entertaining guests.

5 ways to stage the outdoor living room

  • Declutter & Clean
    Just as with indoor staging, the first step to sprucing up the outdoor living room is to clear dirt and clutter from the space. Store lawn equipment, children’s toys, and pet play things in a shed or garage. Have clients stash lawn ornaments and yard art, especially anything that is personalized. (After all, the goal is to get buyers to envision themselves in the space.) Thin out furniture and patio accessories to make the space look larger. Finally, give the entire area a good scrub down, sweeping away dust and debris to create a fresh, clean canvas.
  • Invite the Outdoors In
    Blending interior and outdoor living spaces helps the exterior area feel like an extension of the home, not an afterthought. Ensure blinds and curtains are open to the family yard, highlighting the outdoor oasis before the potential buyer even steps through the backdoor. If the weather is nice during a showing, leave sliding patio or French doors open to illustrate just the space’s seamlessness. Finally, ensure the indoor and outdoor décor complement one another by working with your client to utilize similar colors, materials and styles both inside and out.
  • Create Cozy Sitting Areas
    Help your clients arrange their outdoor furniture in a way that invites buyers to sit down and envision themselves enjoying the seller’s backyard. Leave a cold pitcher of iced tea or fresh-squeezed lemonade on the outdoor dining table for this very purpose. Create easy traffic flow throughout the outdoor living room, while offering a number of places for people to sit – at a table, around a fire pit, or in a cozy chair configuration. Also, offer some shade by using umbrellas or outdoor curtains to minimize sun glare and maximize visions of enjoyment in the outdoor living room.
  • Soften the Outdoor Space
    Introducing a few soft design features into the outdoor area to create an inviting atmosphere. Rugs, throw pillows and upholstered patio furniture are a few ways to accomplish a “cozy” feel. Ensure these items are looking fresh and clean and not worn and dated. It’s relatively inexpensive to swap out new pillows and rugs. Create outdoor ambiance by hanging string lighting, introducing a fire pit in the center of a patio, setting up a zen-like water feature, or adding candles, small plants and freshly-cut flowers to tabletops.
  • Utilize Living Landscapes
    Nothing says “welcome home” quite like a beautiful living landscape, complete with flowering shrubs, trees, flowers, and other vegetation. Encourage clients to freshen up their family yard by weeding, mulching and planting flower beds and pots with colorful flowers and verdant plants. Vases of flowers can also help bring life – and a pop of color – to outdoor tablescapes.

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