Home staging: what, why and tips
What is home staging?
When you decide to put your home up for sale, real estate agents often talk about staging your home. This means decorating that is designed to showcase the best features of the house to impress potential buyers for a quick sale.
Why stage your home?
- Dress to impress. Staging your home is similar to dressing for success. You dress to impress so why shouldn’t your house? Home staging will make your home look it’s best to potential buyers, especially if other houses on the market are not staged. Your staged listing will stand out on MLS.
- Quicker sale. With a staged home, your house is visually more appealing than other houses on the market. It allows for buyers to envision the potential of a home. Staged homes showcase its full potential, highlight its strengths, minimize the impact of its faults and enhances potential buyer’s’ ability to connect with the property and see themselves living in it.
- Ideal sale price. Statistics show that staged houses sell for a better price than houses not staged. When you are staging your home, you are enhancing the potential of your home and therefore increasing likelihood of receiving what you listed your house for or even selling for more than the asking price. The longer your home is listed on the market, the less you are expected to receive for the selling price.
Can I stage my own home or should I find a professional home stager?
When you list your house for sale you can either decide to stage your own home or hire a professional home stager. Of course, each option has a different cost and impact. If you decide to hire a professional home stager, there will be a cost to it and that can vary from designer to designer and with how much experience they carry. When you stage your home, you will most likely be spending less as you will be using existing furniture to stage around with.
What to expect and look for in a home stager
When you Google home stager in your geographic area, you may be given in a long list. You have absolutely no idea what you should look for to narrow your list down for in a quality home stager.
Here are 5 qualities to look for in a home stager:
- Qualifications and portfolio: how long has the designer been in the staging industry for? Looking at their past projects will be able to provide you with an idea of what their works are like. Make sure the photos they show you are the real deal. You can ask them about
- Specialty: each home stager may specialize in a specific type of home, like lofts, condos, town houses, etc., make sure the one you hire is one that specializes in the type of house you are listing.
- Pricing: whatever service we are looking to use, we always look at the price to determine if it is worth it or not. In staging, price does not really mean anything. A good stager will be willing to work with your budget.
- Real estate market knowledge: if the home stager knows the local housing market, it can greatly help with how they will stage your home. They are part of the real estate industry as much as a real estate agent. They should generally know how much homes usually sell for and how long they sit on the market for.
- Professionalism: does the stager emit a professional feel that you are comfortable in putting your trust in? They will be going through your house and rearranging everything. Are they honest and open to address concerns they may have on issues pertaining to the presentation of your home?
Simple home staging tips
If you are not looking into hiring a home stager, then you will have to put in more effort to make your property look pleasant!
- Curb appeal: this is the first thing that every person sees when they pass by your home. If it is attracting enough, it may bring in prospective buyers to book viewings for your house.
- Clean, clean, clean: when people come to see your house, it is important that everything is squeaky clean. Clean does not just mean vacuuming the carpet and cleaning the bathroom, it means getting to the bottom of everything – under the countertops, shower curtains, ceiling fans, etc., everything should be aesthetically pleasing.
- Clear away the clutter: it is best to clean and get rid of the mess in your home. Whenever people view your house, a clean home is more inviting than one that is messy. An uncluttered home allows people to see the beauty in your home.
- Depersonalize: removing family pictures, children’s artwork, etc., will allow buyers to imagine themselves living in your house. It will not make them feel like they are intruding into someone’s home.
- Remove odors: a house that smells great makes it memorable. If you own any pets, air out the house to get rid of the smell and if possible, arrange for them to stay at a family or friend’s house or even send them to boarding. Placing automatic air freshener around the house will definitely help in getting rid of odor without too much effort.
- Minor repairs: make an effort in covering the punctured holes on the wall when you hung pictures on it. Some buyers can be picky when it comes to these minor details and may negotiate for a lower price because of these minor defects.
- Light it up: a bright and lit home makes it very welcoming and helps emphasize the cleanliness of the home. Buyers look for light and bright so shining lots of light is great!
Home staging comes with a price but it can make a difference in the selling price of your home. Not all sellers stage their home so you will be at an advantage if you do. Getting your house ready to sell is a lot of work, but it is absolutely worth the effort rather than listing for less than you should and then reducing your price even more to sell.