Message to Realtors

When you think of home staging,what comes to mind?

Part one

In my experience there tend to be four sorts of responses to this question.First, some Realtors think that home stagers are a waste of time and money.Second,some think home stagers are only for high value properties.Third,some see home stagers as a valuable service.And finally,some think that we home stagers make moving more costly than it needs to be because homeowners have to buy all kinds of new furniture and accessories.

Before I address these home staging myths,let’s take a couple of minutes to talk about what exactly home staging is.From my experience home staging can best be described as a process of “dressing a house” so that it looks it’s best. Just like when we dress ourselves up to go to an interview in the hopes that we will be ‘picked’ out of all the people available,home staging pretties up a house so that potential buyers get the best possible impression of it.

So what are the economic realities of staging? As a Realtor you already know that most homes are bought as a result of an emotional response by the buyer.In today’s marketplace,emotionally based sales are becoming more and more common.It has become critical that homeowners seeking to sell quickly and for a good price have a home that hits a positive emotional response in buyers.Home stagers are aware of what most effectively and efficiently creates that positive emotional hit.The one that encourages a buyer to say “I’ll take it”. Home staging is not the same as home decorating; it’s focus is always on the needs of the buyer and not the seller.

Let’s face it,home buyers have changed.They watch all the decorating shows on TV and expect only the best for themselves.Often their expectations are out of line with their budgets,but that doesn’t stop them wishing for the moon.First impressions are critical to them.They have seen it all,the latest model homes,home tours,lottery palaces.They desire the best.

Conversely,the average home seller has lived in their home for long enough that they have stopped seeing it as a potential buyer would.They’ve long ago stopped noticing the clutter,blocked windows and doorways,how shabby the last paint job has become,how dingy their home looks to new eyes.That’s where home stagers can save the day.We look at a property through a buyer’s eye,to point out the negatives that will deter a sale and to highlight positive features of a property which may be currently hidden or overshadowed.

To be continued………