If you are selling your home for the first time (even for the first time in awhile) you may be curious about some of the techniques you’ve heard about – like home staging! I’ve staged a few home that clients have listed and many of the renovated properties I’ve worked on have been staged because they’ve been vacant. I wanted to get an experts opinion on why home staging can be really helpful in selling a home so I partnered up with Johnathan from Jsquared, Home Staging and Interior Design, to give you all some more info. Here’s some advice from Johnathan about staging your home!
Staging a home creates a warm and inviting environment, gives buyers a sense of how to layout a space, creates more attractive photos online and typically gets offers closer to the asking price. Staging gives you the advantage you need to capture a buyer’s attention. Agents and sellers want prospective buyers to come into a warm and inviting home where they can imagine how the house would look if it were theirs. Rooms appear smaller without furniture in them and those homes can spend more days on the market.
Have a Professional Home Stager do an occupied consult. Staging involves taking one’s personality out of the house, so the decor is neutral and appealing to the broadest range of potential home buyers. It is very difficult for homeowners to look at their own house objectively. Living in a house, one becomes accustomed to the sights, sounds, and smells of their environment. Asking a professional home stager to evaluate your home will allow you to get a sneak peek at what buyers will be focusing on (the good, the bad, and the ugly).
In vacant properties, buyers tend to focus on every imperfection. Unless your property is brand new, this is going to be a problem. The older the house and the more outdated the fixtures, the bigger this problem will be. Filling the property with tasteful furnishings will help buyers focus less on some of those features (like brass faucets) and minimize the impact of these otherwise small details.
Lifestyle! Look at the first showing as the “first date.” You want it to be warm and inviting and well-dressed so buyers will have an emotional response and establish a personal connection with the house. Have you ever visited a model home by a builder before? You want your house to come as close to a model home as possible, so even if they don’t have the perfect couch or the right table to put in your home it won’t matter because they can see what it would look like if all that great stuff was there. It’s the idea that the desired lifestyle they want could be achieved in your home.
High DOM = Lower Net Profit. Home staging works to sell a property fast, period! It is proven that listings that have longer DOM (days on market) periods attract lower offers. This can often be the case with vacant homes. As we said, vacant homes give people the opportunity to focus on imperfections they might otherwise ignore. Not to mention that the longer your home sits on the market as a seller the more mortgage payments and monthly utility bills you’ll be paying while the house sits for sale. The investment of staging a home upfront can sometimes save you from those months of extra payments. It’s those first impressions that you have to make count. In the end, a vacant home, or even a poorly furnished home, may get little to no buyer traffic and without any buyer traffic that property may sit for awhile.
A home stager is a merchandising specialist that helps you sell your product, in this case your home. Over 90% of sellers are viewing their next home online. Did you know that of that 90%, 85% of those buyers say it’s the photos that were the deciding factor of which homes to view. Home stating can help you appeal to the broadest range of potential buyers online and will instantly create more attractive photos that drive buyer traffic to the property.
No. BUT the home needs to be clutter-free, clean, attractive and a staged so that it show like a model home and will “wow” the broadest range of potential buyers. This allows your home to make a great first impression. Jsquared can also can provide furniture and decor packages that will compliment furniture that may remain in the home while at the same time giving the space a more complete and current show-home ready look.
A home stager will start by focusing on the main living areas of the property that are most important to buyers upon viewing – typically the Living Room, Dining Room, Kitchen and Master Bedroom. (This is Jsquared’s standard package.) Then they will look at any additional rooms they feel may need staging (rooms that a buyer may have a hard time envisioning how to layout the space due to a small or unusual floor plan.) For us, a formal quote along with a copy of our staging contract is then emailed to the agent or seller. Home staging is an investment upfront but it pays off! The average cost of a complete staging project is usually much less than your first price reduction. Statistically, homes that have been properly prepared for the market sell before a price reduction is needed. In a good or bad housing market, some studies have shown that staged homes can add between 10 and 15 percent to the sale price. There will be staging costs, but it can costs more to not stage down the road.
Thanks so much for the great advice Johnathan! I know many of my sellers are interested in the possibility of home staging and this article will help them develop the best plan. If you have more questions about home staging Johnathan and Jsquared were nice enough to provide us with a staging infographic. Download it here!
Jessica Deleo is a licensed agent in Richmond, Virginia with One South Realty Group. All information provided is of my own opinion and intended for educational purposes only. Read full disclaimer.