The key element to staging your home like a professional is to highlight the strengths and draw attention away from weaknesses.
"Organize all of the cabinets," says Melinda Massie, owner of Organizing with a Side of Fabulous, a professional organizing and home-staging company in Fort Worth, Texas. "Messy cabinets make it look like you don't have enough storage. Storage sells."
If the weakness in the family room is the old brick fireplace, then decorate the room to distract attention from it. For example, embellish the two built-in bookcases that flank the fireplace.