Even the most beautiful homes can be a struggle to sell or rent if they look lacklustre upon first impression.

When selling a home, it’s not enough to just clear out any clutter and clean; you have to stage it correctly to entice viewers and beat the competition.

A new study by CIA Landlord has found the top items and features for making your home Selling Sunset worthy to viewers.

Here, we reveal the most cost-effective items to buy that add merit to your space based on value combined with popularity by search volume and instagramability. We also showcase the best free ways to revamp a space as well as what red flags to look for when viewing a property.

These 10 Simple, Cheap Finishing Touches Can Increase Your Home’s Value by Almost £1000!

Adding these 10 simple items to your home when staging can increase the value by almost £1000. Everyday pieces like plants, candles and books can significantly raise the value of your home to viewers.

While wallpaper is more of an investment, it can completely transform the look of a room and light and neutral tones can even make the space look bigger and increase the market value by £800.

Books and candles are great options to make a space feel more homely while increasing its value. Placing books on the shelves or cookbooks in the kitchen can give a lived-in feel to an interior while candles add warm lighting and pleasant smells to a home.

A quick grocery shop can even boost the staging value of your home. Fresh vegetables in the kitchen create a wholesome and country-style atmosphere and small decorative jars filled with sweets are a great addition that can also be offered to viewers of the flat.

The top staging items include:

Rank Item Search Volume Cost Value-Added Cost Overall Score
1 Plants 368,000 £10 £17.02 8.45
2 Wallpaper 550,000 £400 £800.00 7.01
3 Curtains 201,000 £23 £32.86 6.99
4 Books 165,000 £12 £16.44 6.77
5 Sweets 110,000 £2 £2.56 6.40
6 Lighting 110,000 £7 £8.96 6.36
7 Candles 90,500 £2 £2.50 6.24
8 Cushions 90,500 £14 £17.47 6.15
9 Vegetables 74,000 £2 £2.44 6.10
10 Photo Frames 90,500 £30 £37.44 6.03

Plants Are the Most Cost-Effective Finishing Touch to Use to Stage Your Home, Increasing the Value of Your Home by £17 per Plant!

Adding plants and seasonal flowers is the best way to enhance a house for staging. Starting from just £3, flowers that are in season are a cost-effective option to add £17.02 of value to a room and introduce a natural aroma. You can style them in bouquets, or in numerous small vases adding pops of colour to compliment simple decor with warmth and a sense of life and nature.

To reveal the most picturesque plants to include when staging your home, we combined the cost vs. instagramability to reveal the top plants to use in staging.

When considering which plant to use in staging, succulents are the cheapest and most popular option, as well as the easiest plant to maintain. If you’re more of a plant fiend and don’t mind the investment, then a fiddle leaf fig is a beautiful choice and one of the most popular plants you can find.

Rank Plants Cost Instagram Posts Overall Score
1 Succulent £3 457,416 10.00
2 Snake Plant £10 240,596 6.00
3 Spider Plant £10 163,684 5.23
4 Aloe Vera Plant £7.5 92,898 5.19
5 English Ivy £6 29,671 4.96
6 Peace Lily £10 126,766 4.87
7 Chinese Money Plant £10 44,390 4.05
8 Boston Fern £10 26,571 3.87
9 Birds Nest Fern £10 18,057 3.79
10 Fiddle Leaf Fig £20 260,189 3.54

These Are the 10 Cheapest Ways to Boost the Staging Value of Your Home

As well as purchasing new items, there are numerous free ways you can boost the value of your home. One of the most important aspects of presenting a home is ensuring it’s clutter-free. Ally Dowsing-Reynolds, co-owner at Dowsing & Reynolds recommends…

It’s also important to give the space a deep clean, all the way into deep corners and behind furniture and have all surfaces and appliances looking spotless. You should aim to have everything looking close to new or pristine conditions so buyers feel confident in the condition of the property.

Finally, when staging a home you should think about emotion and what atmosphere you want to portray.

The cheapest ways to add flair to home staging include:

Rank Item Search Volume Cost Overall Score
1 Soap 40,500 £2 5.83
2 Vegetables 74,000 £2 6.10
3 Candles 90,500 £2 6.24
4 Sweets 110,000 £2 6.40
5 Citrus fruit 9,900 £5 5.56
6 Toiletries 9,900 £5 5.56
7 Fruit bowl 27,100 £5 5.70
8 Outdoor plants 18,100 £6 5.62
9 Face cloth 4,400 £7 5.50
10 Lighting 110,000 £7 6.36

Blinds, Artificial Air Fresheners and Fresh Paint Stains Are Some of the LEAST Desirable Features to Add When Staging a Home to Potential Buyers

While blinds can brighten up a room and prevent too much glare from the sun, closed blinds can indicate to viewers that it may be concealing an unsightly view. Similarly, random fresh paint can pose a red flag to viewers. A room with only one wall or a small portion of the ceiling that has been freshly painted suggests the stains are from a prior problem that has not been corrected.

Instead of purchasing exotic or out-of-season flowers, a popular and much more affordable option is to choose flowers and plants which are in season. Likewise, while history books are a great way to add culture into a space, choosing fashion books and magazines instead can significantly increase your home’s staging value.

A cluttered coffee table or too many decorative items can also be off-putting to potential buyers. “When staging a home, the worst thing you can do is overcrowd or clutter rooms and areas” comments Alex Willcocks, owner of Burbeck Interiors comments “home staging isn’t about quantity, it’s about quality. This retracts from the space, and the potential it has. Home staging is all about selling the potential buyer a vision, and this vision needs to be incredibly appealing.”

The least-cost effective features to add to home staging are:

Rank Item Search Volume Cost Value-Added Cost Overall Score
1 Blinds 165,000 £600 £821.94 2.35
2 Cutlery 22,200 £59 £67.03 5.25
3 Desk lamp 22,200 £55 £62.49 5.28
4 Storage area 90 £30 £33.00 5.29
5 Coffee table 165,000 £200 £273.98 5.36
6 Exotic flowers 2,400 £23 £25.39 5.36
7 Decorative tray 4,400 £25 £27.68 5.36
8 Artificial air freshener 1,300 £20 £22.04 5.37
9 Settable 6,600 £24 £26.66 5.39
10 Fresh paint 260 £12 £13.20 5.43

Chanel Inspires the Top Fashion Books for Staging in a Home

Fashion books are a perfect way to add a stylish flair to your living room or bookshelves. The top books people like to see include The World According to Karl, Chanel: Collections and Creations and The Vanity Fair Diaries: 1983 – 1992. Dior Couture is more of a price option at £50 but is the most popular book you can purchase to spruce up space.

The top fashion books for staging include:

Rank Plants Cost Instagram Posts Overall Score
1 The World According to Karl £7 1,194 5.57
2 Chanel: Collections and Creations £20 23,295 5.55
3 The Vanity Fair Diaries: 1983 – 1992 £7 255 5.51
4 Dior Couture £50 74,045 5.50
5 Little Book of Prada £10 444 5.21
6 Shocking Life: The Autobiography of Elsa Schiaparelli £10 270 5.20
7 D.V. (Vogue book) £12 1,028 5.04
8 Fashion Climbing: A Memoir £12 453 5.00
9 Gods and Kings: The Rise and Fall of Alexander McQueen and John Galliano £15 5,390 4.99
10 Walking with the Muses: A Memoir £13 797 4.92

Vogue Is the Top Fashion Magazine for Staging Home Staging, Followed by Cosmopolitan and Elle!

Magazines are one of the most popular ways to dress up a simple coffee table. Propped beside a candle and decorative tray, we recommend Vogue, Cosmopolitan and ELLE as the most sought-after and cost-effective issues to display in your home

The other top magazines include:

Rank Plants Cost Instagram Posts Overall Score
1 Vogue £4.00 18,080,202 9.10
2 Cosmopolitan £2.00 2,111,763 6.02
3 ELLE £4.50 2,905,212 5.10
4 GQ £4.00 491,367 4.72
5 Marie Claire £4.20 540,590 4.64
6 Harpers Bazaar £5.00 755,910 4.33
7 Vanity Fair £5.00 675,960 4.31
8 Red £5.00 13,882 4.15
9 Esquire £6.00 705,322 3.87
10 InStyle £8.00 3,456,722 3.66

These Are the Top Hand-washes to Use When Home Staging

Our bathrooms and en-suites are filled with toiletries, lotions and moistures of all types. These are essential items that add a touch of glamour to a room while providing an atmosphere which encourages self-care. Sanctuary Spa hand wash is the most popular soap to include in staging homes and costs just £2 for a bottle. If you choose to go down a pricier route then Neal’s Yard Remedies Geranium and Orange Hand Wash are one of the most loved on the market.

The top hand-washes to include when staging are:

Rank Soaps Cost Instagram Posts Overall Score
1 Sanctuary Spa Hand Wash £2.00 15,153 9.67
2 Imperial Leather Original Bar Soap £2.00 15,218 9.67
3 Method Pink Grapefruit Hand Wash £2.50 1,035 9.64
4 Carex Fun Edition Unicorn Antibacterial Hand Wash £2.00 23,065 9.62
5 Palmolive Aquarium Liquid Handwash £1.00 66,809 9.58
6 Baylis & Harding £4.00 8,845 9.24
7 Simple Antibacterial Cleansing Hand Wash £6.00 1,963 8.81
8 CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar £6.00 85,722 8.28
9 Carex Liquid Soap Moisture Plus £8.00 23,065 8.20
10 Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar £4.00 199,633 8.03
11 Neal’s Yard Remedies Geranium and Orange Hand Wash £12.00 94,107 6.80

Alex Willcocks, owner of Burbeck Interiors comments, “It is incredibly important for potential buyers to be able to move freely around the property and feel the space, without being impeded by the volume of furniture. The furniture is simply there as an attraction, rather than a selling point. It is used to highlight the space and property, not the other way round. As such we focus on quality high-value items such as sofas, rugs, headboards and feature chairs. We select particular items that can express Burbeck’s style through their textures and colours. Artwork and accessories also feature highly when adding value.”


The top staging features were selected by search volume data using Ahrefs and analysing the costs associated with each feature, as well as Instagram hashtags to create a combined score of the most cost-effective staging items.

Notes to Editors

If you’re interested in covering our study, we only ask you to please refer back to this study with a link to this post.

PR contact: ailbhe.hanratty@kaizen.co.uk

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