The Staging Life: How Long is Your Exit Plan


By Nan Johnston, Special to The Shopper

We have become one of my very own clients.  We, (I say we, but mostly me) have a 5-year exit plan to get our home prepared for the real estate market.

That’s not to say that we are moving in 5 years, but our house is almost 20 years old, it needs updating and if we are going to invest in the improvements to make it more appealing for the market, I want to be able to enjoy some of the fruits of our labor now, not make improvements and then have to leave them.

What’s in the 5 year plan?

  • Landscaping
  • Water run off control
  • Improved Dog pen area
  • Update Kitchen countertops
  • Add backsplash to said kitchen
  • Update Master bath vanity
  • Refinish hardwood floors.

This is all in addition to the regular maintenance that a house requires. Replacing worn out appliances, re-staining exterior,  repainting interior, etc.

It’s not work that we want to do, but it’s time to do it.  It’s not going to be inexpensive either, but if we want TOP DOLLAR for our house, these improvement will go a long way in helping us get closer to asking price than if we don’t do this stuff.

If you have been in your house for more than 10 years, you may want to go over this list too and ask someone that will give you an honest answer about whether or not you need to update your home.  Or feel free to contact me …


Nan Johnston is a professional home staging consultant from Newnan with over 30 years experience in the real estate industry. Check out her website for some interesting before and after photos at

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