Roger Hazard and Chris Stout-Hazard
Cart | Checkout

Felicia and Her Family Put Staging Principles Into Practice

By Roger Hazard

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to meet Felicia Merritt, her husband Kenneth Sr., and their kids at their home in Omaha, Nebraska. Felicia is a fan of Sell This House and wanted my help with their home. Felicia is a working mother - a police officer - and she and her husband are raising nine children, seven that are adopted. Their family is growing, and they are eager to move to a larger house.

This is a house full of love - and I mean full!

Because Felicia is a fan of the show, I was curious to see if she had put my techniques into practice when it came time to sell her own home. I immediately saw that she has been paying close attention! A few of the steps Felicia and her family have used to increase the appeal of their home:

1. Minimizing clutter and personal items. I'll admit that it can be tough to reduce clutter in one's own home. Over time, it becomes invisible to us. Felicia and her family did a fantastic job of packing up inessential items and personal effects. This is still a family's home; our goal shouldn't be to disguise that but to instead allow buyers to see the home without unnecessary distractions.

2. Keeping "kid stuff" to a minimum. I frequently hear from homeowners that it's "impossible" to put away their children's toys when showing their home. The Merritts demonstrate that, even for very large families, this simply isn't true. Toys were organized and put away, allowing me to focus on the rooms and views instead of worrying about tripping over a stray Tonka truck.

3. Keeping an impeccably clean home. With Sell This House, I've discovered that many houses are downright filthy. Dust and grime are huge turn-offs to prospective buyers. By contrast, the Merritts have one of the cleanest homes I've visited in years. Clean homes sparkle. They look newer, smell better, and command higher prices. Keeping your home clean is a group effort: Everyone in the Merritt household contributes, and the results are impressive. Great job, team!

4. Staying in touch with what buyers want. Together with their real estate agent DeDee Oliver, the Merritts have reviewed feedback from potential buyers and taken steps to address potential shortcomings. Many buyers have expressed an interest in granite countertops. Rather than perform the upgrade themselves and run the risk of choosing the "wrong" color, the Merritts are instead doing what I recommend: offering a credit to the price of new countertops so that the buyer can make their own selection. Because many buyers looking in the neighborhood want four bedrooms but not necessarily five, their agent will be reclassifying the bedroom in the finished basement as an office with a prairie view.

If you've seen my show, you know it's rare that I can walk through a house without finding plenty to critique. But I came away thoroughly impressed by Felicia and Kenneth Sr.'s welcoming, well-cared for home. I'm confident that the effort they have invested into preparing the house for sale will soon pay off.

This 5 bedroom, 3 bath, Omaha, Nebraska home is currently listed for $257,000 by DeDee Oliver of NP Dodge Real Estate.

Pin It
Roger Hazard
Roger Hazard · Founder · Roger + Chris · Sharon Springs, NY
Roger Hazard is TV's original home stager, as well as designer / producer on the international, Emmy-nominated "SELL THIS HOUSE," "SELL THIS HOUSE: EXTREME," and "MOVE THIS HOUSE." MORE ABOUT Roger Hazard

Hot right now on Roger + Chris

Best Blue Velvet Sofas
We've gathered some of our favorite sofas and armchairs in gorgeous blue velvets, along with design inspiration from around the web.
Infographic: How Big Furniture Companies REALLY Use Your Money
With most luxury furniture companies, only a fraction of each dollar you spend is actually used to build your sofa. Let's look at just a few of the other things you're paying for when you shop with big retailers.
10 Design Tips for Picking the Perfect Chesterfield
The Chesterfield sofa - one of the oldest and most desireable sofa styles - is seeing a very well-deserved resurgence in popularity. As "the king of sofas," the Chesterfield bring a huge amount of style and comfort to any home or business. Available as a sofa, sectional, armchair, or chaise, there are quite a few things to consider when picking the perfect one. Here are 10 tips that will give you a big head start on the search for your dream Chesterfield.
RELATED POSTS
How to Clean Velvet Furniture
Velvet fabric can be a bit trickier to clean than other fabrics because, in addition to removing the stain, you must take care to avoid "crushing" the nap of the fiber. Here are some tips to help you successfully remove stains without damaging your beautiful furniture.
25 Weird DIY Tips That Actually Work
Here are 25 unusual solutions to common household problems using stuff you probably have sitting around the house.
Got A Few Bucks? Create Art With Dollar Bills
Want a quick way to create some fun, patriotic art for your home? Our abstract currency images look great and are easy to make.
JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER

Design ideas, new stuff. discounts, and the occasional puppy photo. Sign up! All the cool kids are doing it.

NEW GOODIES
Natalie midcentury modern sofa in Minetta Linen performance fabric with optional bolster pillows
Basel tight back English roll-arm chair in Ludlow Pine stain-proof green fabric
Higgins Chesterfield sofa with wide tufting pattern and tufted seat in Cortina Wenge 2465 brown leather
Lincoln tufted-back armchair in Lafayette Gotham grey stain-resistant velvet
Basel tight-back English roll-arm sofa in Cortlandt Wheat stain-resistant fabric
Higgins Chesterfield sofa in Perspective Pitch Dark black leather with tufted seat. Photo courtesy Erica Ortiz Berke, NeuBleu Interior Design.