Have you ever walked into a model home and been so captivated by the tasteful décor that you long for that home to be your very own? If so, you’ve been influenced by an interior decorating technique called home staging. In today’s real estate market, home staging is one of the hottest trends for making the most of your home’s attributes in order to make it more attractive to potential buyers. Staging has continuously proven to be successful in increasing the value of the property while reducing the time a property stays on the market.
So what exactly does staging involve for the seller? Typically an initial 60-90 minute staging consultation involves the professional stager walking room by room through the seller’s home making recommendations on how to make each room “show at its best.” Suggestions might include ways to neutralize, depersonalize, de-clutter, or maximize space. A comprehensive written “Action Plan” is provided that entails the professional stager’s recommendations that will enable the seller’s home to stand out among its competition. The seller then has the option to hire the stager to rearrange or remove furniture in order to optimize space and highlight the home’s finest attributes, to fix problems that detract, and add décor that will make the home appeal to the majority of buyers.
Why consider staging when selling a home? Studies show that staged homes sell up to 3 times faster than non-staged homes and they sell for top dollar. In today’s competitive market, sellers must take steps to make their home stand out among the rest. Buyers view staged homes as homes that have been well maintained. Today most buyers also depend on virtual tours to help them in their selection process. A staged home shows better on a virtual tour making it more likely to draw potential buyers.
Another feature of home staging that can be advantageous for the seller is the option to bring in furnishings to make a sterile or sparsely furnished room more inviting. Stagers can also make arrangements to furnish entire homes if the property is vacant. Vacant homes lack warmth, force buyers to rely completely on their imagination, and offer no distractions from the home’s imperfections. Buyers are much more likely to notice dingy paint, scratches in hardwood flooring, and dated fixtures in vacant homes. Buyers also find it difficult to envision a floor plan for their furnishings. Staging provides a picture of how the home could look if they lived there and the scale of furniture necessary to achieve the look.
Remember… marketing a home is not the same as living in one. Many realtors offer staging services as part of their listing package, or can recommend someone in the industry. A professional stager will look at the home with an experienced, tasteful and objective eye. Buyers want to feel comfort, warmth, excitement, and inspiration when shopping for a home. Ultimately, effective staging maximizes those feelings, creating a home the prospective buyer will simply not be able to live without.