How Does Home Staging Work?
Now that you see the benefits of home staging, here are just some of the areas a staging professional can help you elevate your listing to wow status. Remember, stagers are there to give you an honest assessment of things that will make your home more universally appealing to prospective buyers. They’re here to provide their expertise and experience, so be ready to take their advice and create a pleasing neutral palate will attract more buyers and hopefully, competing offers.
Most stagers start off by walking through your entire home and taking notes. After they have gone through the entire home, they’ll not only share their observations, but often prioritize them in order of importance. This is often referred to as their “5C method.”
Buyers want to buy a home that looks as gently lived in as possible. Especially for families with pets and small children, homes can start looking a bit rough pretty quickly. Your stager will note certain areas that may require additional elbow grease, professional cleaning or potential replacement. The usual culprits that require a thorough professional once-over are carpets, windows, bathrooms and kitchens. If carpets are old and past their prime, replacement or offering a new carpet allowance may be another option to discuss with your REALTOR.
Always remember you are selling the house, not your possessions. Having too much stuff in a house will make it feel smaller than it really is, and makes buyers feel claustrophobic and concerned that the house may be too small for their needs. This is where a stager will advise you to get packing, thin out overstuffed closets and start throwing out or donating items that are sitting unused in storage areas of the home. Countertops in bathrooms and kitchens should be as clear as possible.
This one is more important than you think, as the color of a room also affects how light or bright it will feel. Also, a room that hasn’t been painted in 15 years will look outdated simply based on the colors no longer being fresh. Faded colors and dirt-tinged walls will never look as good as those that are fresh and crisp from a recent coat of paint. Additionally, color trends change through time so you may want to consider some updates before listing.
Home maintenance needs to be done before you list. Even if you are fine with having a kitchen cabinet door that doesn’t close correctly, doesn’t mean that won’t be a red flag for a buyer. Little things like repairing wood rot, fixing leaks and eliminating traces that it ever existed will go a long way in making buyers feel this home was lovingly cared for. For example, if you replaced the roof because it was leaking but didn’t repair and repaint resultant drywall damage to the ceilings will draw unnecessary concern for an issue you’ve already remedied.
Having a fresh set of eyes will also help find items of potential concern that may not be evident to those living in a home on a daily basis. Often, stagers will notice maintenance items that have crept up on the homeowners over time. Chances are, if your staging professional noticed it, so will a potential buyer.
Buyers want to feel an emotional connection to a home and gain a sense that they and their family will be happy in their new surroundings. They need to be able to see themselves having holiday meals in the dining room or enjoying a cup of morning coffee on the back porch.
This is the reason stagers are going to highly recommend removing personal items, like pictures of you and your family, as well as items specific to your beliefs or value system. It’s hard to picture yourself living in a home with your family when you are surrounded by photos of the current occupants.
Staging consultations prior to listing a home for sale are becoming increasingly more common as sellers are realizing how much the benefits far outweigh the costs. Having a staging professional go room by room to point out all the necessary adjustments as well as providing tips on upping your property’s curb appeal will give you an amazing edge over your competition, as well as reaping you excellent returns at settlement.
Not sure where to find a home stager? Give one of our staging-savvy REALTORS a call today to set up a personal consultation of your home, and get you started on your road to selling your home quickly, easily and for the most money possible.