Chances are, you and your family spend a lot of time in the living room or family room. Most people do. So, there’s a good chance that buyers who view your property are going to imagine themselves doing the same thing.

That’s why staging the living room effectively is so important. Here are some proven ideas:

• Thoroughly clean the living room or family room. It’s one of the most used rooms in a home and prone to stains and odors.

• Make the space look as comfortable and relaxing as possible. If appropriate for the furnishings, make sure there are plenty of throw pillows.

• Set the scene. To create a relaxing atmosphere, place a couple of books on an end-table or put a chessboard or other game on the coffee table.

• The living room should be easy to maneuver through. If you have too many furnishings that are making the space feel cramped, remove something.

• Use lighting to set the mood. Rely on lamps rather than overhead lights. To create a relaxing lighting effect, use bulbs with a warm glow temperature.

As you can see, staging the living room doesn’t require a lot of work. However, these techniques can have a big impact on potential buyers.