Several times in the recent past, we have been asked if a home should be staged.
The challenge is the popularity of HGTV and the flip/renovation to sell shows that almost always end with a staging of the house scene.
This is followed by an open house (which we will discuss in another blog), followed by a full or close to full price offer.
So it begs the question - should a home owner stage their house.
Of course, everyone has a different definition of the term "staging" so the question is not easily answered.
First, let's differentiate STAGING vs. STYLING a home.
When you enter a show home, you know it is not being lived in. Yet, there is furniture in most every room, pictures on the walls and plants on the counters. Some even have toys in the kid’s rooms. This is "staging" - conveying an empty house like a home. Why do home builders do this? To show a buyer how warm and inviting and livable that house can be, and how furniture can fit. Many people have a difficult time visualizing.
But if a homeowner is still living in the house, it is already a home. The homeowner has put their design ideas, no matter how coordinated or how popular their specific taste, into the home.
In other words, it doesn't need to be staged. But it may need help in "styling".
When you are selling a house, you want to present the property in as inviting of a light as possible, both in pictures online and in person.
As a client mentioned recently when they had once bought a home, you want to feel like you can come in, kick off your shoes, grab a beverage and relax. As a home seller who wants to maximize their return, that is what you are trying to achieve.
That means making your home present as close to show home style as possible.
It may mean:
- realigning furniture (you can always move it back once your house is sold)
- removing some items (you have to box these up to move anyway)
- adding things like pillows and flowers (small investment for a big return)
- adjusting a painted feature wall to a neutral tone (it won't be your house soon, so who cares, and paint is one of the least expensive investments you can make)
Whatever it may be, the stylist can work with the owner to maximize that show home look.
Just remember, a fixer upper is still a fixer upper and a styling professional can only do so much.
So when asked if a home needs to be staged, we like to respond that statistics show that an empty house can benefit from "staging". Be aware though, that this will require an additional investment with a staging professional, just like on HGTV, to bring in furniture and accessories.
But, if your home is already lived in, let's invest in a stylist to help you work with what you have to achieve the best results.
Because sometimes, it is all about style Darlin'.
That’s why Team Leesman C.A.R.E.S. includes a designing stylist to work with sellers!