No matter how amazing your home looks, an icky bathroom can annihilate any good impression you've made on a buyer. After all, people want a bathroom that's practically a personal spa -- not a dank, dirty closet you want to escape as soon as possible.
Even if your bathrooms are perfectly clean, if you're selling your home, you may need to up your game in terms of decor. Here's where home staging ideas can really turn a utilitarian space into an attractive selling point. Consider these ways to pull it off:
Hide your unmentionables
No one wants to gaze down at a plunger. Ditto for that jug of Clorox, box of tampons, or dog-eared pile of golf magazines. To stage your home, stash ugly or just pedestrian items under the sink, advises Katie McCann, an organizing coach with Maeve's Method.
Clear the counter of makeup and toothpaste and set out a small vase of flowers and a hand towel. And don't use those disposable clear soap dispensers with colored liquid, urges Lisa Gulliver from Showhomes, a nationwide staging company. Instead, invest in a dispenser with a brushed-nickel pump to match the finish of your faucet.
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Say aah -- spa!
You can't go wrong with a simple, mostly white or neutral look. "A clean spa feel has broad appeal," notes Amy Bell, owner of Red Chair Home Interiors in Cary, NC. Put your money toward new, fluffy, white towels and then either fold them neatly in a stack or roll them up and place them in an attractive basket. Adding a white orchid can also up the spa feel.
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Fix the drip
Call in a plumber pronto if you can't stop the constant dripping from the bathroom sink and shower.
"You also want to be sure the toilet isn't running constantly," says McCann. This gives the impression that your equipment is old or faulty, or both. And be ready for buyers to turn the faucets on and off to see what kind of water pressure you have. To increase the gush, enlarge the hole in the washer inside the shower head.
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Consider the curtain
If you have a curtain rod, hang it high to give more height to the space and then install a new white shower curtain to brighten the space, says Gale Sitomer of G Sitomer Design in New York City.
Gulliver agrees. "It's a good idea to update your shower curtain with a lighter, neutral color and buy coordinated towels in shades of white, cream, gray, or taupe," she says.
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Replace the vanity
Installing a new cabinet for the bathroom sink is money well spent. Ditch the one you've had for years, and seek out a solid cabinet rather than one made from less-than-attractive cheap materials like pressed particle board.
"A new vanity with clean lines can make a bathroom look 10 years newer," Sitomer says. And if you have the space and budget, update the hamper (choose a good-quality basket) and add a small stool to hold pretty jars of bath salts.
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Watch: Top 3 Smells That Turn Off Buyers