Staging your home is a new stress on top of the already stressful time of selling a home. Not only must sellers keep in mind the tremulous housing market, but they have to prepare their home for potential buyers as well.
In recent years, however, housing and selling techniques have become more strategic. Those preparing to put their home on the market have the advantage of now knowing just how to appeal to their buyer audience. To stage your home is no longer a nice idea. It’s one of the most important things you can do when selling your home.
The process of staging a home to better appeal to potential buyers has become increasingly popular within recent years.
Stagedhomes.comshows that staged homes average 6 days for selling time on the market versus 48 days nationally.
According to Stagedhomes.com, “in a decreasing housing market, staged homes will sell quicker and for more money than a home that has not been staged. In an increasing housing market, staged homes will sell for even more money.”
What is a Staged Home?
Staging a home includes preparing a residence for sale in the housing market. A staged home entices buyers with a move in ready look. And as we’ve already seen, a staged home will sell faster and for more than a home that isn’t staged.
Most staging techniques are primarily focused on the appearance of the home for sale. They transform the home into a more welcoming environment for potential buyers. Most staged homes include art, paintings, lights, plants and rugs to give the property for sale a more attractive look.
How Much More do Staged Homes Sell For?
According to the National Association of Realtors, for every $100 invested in staging your home, the potential return is $400. That’s a 4x return for doing a few simple things! When selling something as expensive as a home this is well worth your time.
“U.S. research states that home staging can reduce a listing’s time on the market by one third to half, and could fetch as much as six percent to 20 percent more than an empty home or a home not properly staged,” an article by nwi.com states.
How do you stage your home? Here’s 15 tip
As practical as home staging sounds at first, many are unsure of where to start. Highlighting the strengths and downplaying the weaknesses of your home is an integral part of the home staging process. Here are 15 tips, provided by HGTV, to best stage your home for potential buyers.
1. Manage Clutter
HGTV lists managing clutter as the most important thing you can do to prepare for selling and staging your home. One of the major contributors to clutter is having too much furniture remaining in your home. Professional stagers recommend having the least amount of furniture possible in your home to make the space look bigger.
2. Furniture Groupings
HGTV’s professional stagers recommend grouping furniture together away from walls. “Reposition couches and chairs into cozy conversational groups and place pieces so that the traffic flow in a room is obvious.” This will help your staged room not only look more inviting, but spacious as well.
3. Feel Free to Move Furniture
Move furniture and décor around whenever you feel necessary. Give your home a whole new feel! By the time you’re done staging you may not want to leave. This will give new life to decorated rooms and will help to present a fresher feel.
4. Room Transformations
If you have a room in your home that only serves to collect clutter, it is advised to repurpose the room to something more meaningful for potential buyers to better connect with. This will assist buyers in seeing the purpose behind every room in the home you are selling.
5. Home Lighting
Lighting is an integral part of staging your home. HGTV attributes well-lit rooms to a more welcoming environment for potential buyers to step into. Because many homes are poorly lit, professional stagers recommend having three types of lighting in staged rooms: ambient (general or overhead lighting), task (under-cabinet or reading lights) and accent (table or wall fixtures).
6. Paint Rooms to Have Them Appear Bigger
To make a room look bigger, HGTV recommends painting it the same color as an adjacent room. “If you have a small kitchen and dining room, a seamless look will make both rooms feel like one big space.”
7. Neutral and Appealing
HGTV advises those interested in staging their home to paint the walls of their living room a neutral color. Bold wall colors have a way of reducing offers from potential buyers because they often distract from the visualization of the room.
8. Experiment with Color
Just because the living room shouldn’t stray from a neutral color pallet doesn’t mean other staged rooms of the house can’t. Don’t be afraid to use darker and more dramatic tones in bathrooms, dining rooms or bedrooms. This often presents the space with a more intimate and dramatic feel. Painting an accent wall with a bold color is also advised to draw attention to a particular portion of room.
9. Vary Wall Hangings
Many feel inclined to place wall hangings on the same invisible line, but professional stagers advise staggering art to promote interest and break up any monotony in a room. “Art displayed creatively makes it stand out and shows off your space.”
10. Accessorizing a Room
Accessories have the potential to pull a whole room together and make it appear more inviting to potential buyers. When it comes to decorating with accessories, grouping objects in odd numbers, preferably three, is often the most appealing to the eye. For maximum effect, accessories should be grouped by color, shape, texture or some other unifying quality, according to HGTV.
11. Raid Your Yard
Most staged homes incorporate fresh flower arrangements to make the space appear more inviting. A budget-friendly option for this is to utilize flowers from your backyard or any surrounding area.
12. Serene and Inviting
Incorporating softer colors into your staged bedroom will make potential buyers feel more at ease when touring your property for sale. HGTV also recommends decluttering your bedroom closet space. This shows off your storage space, which always ranks high on buyers’ priority lists.
13. Try Exchanging Old for New
If new cabinets and other kitchen appliances are out of the question, consider simply replacing the doors and drawer fronts. Then paint everything to match, and add new hardware to your staged kitchen.
14. Finish Unfinished Projects
According to HGTV, unfinished projects are known to scare off potential buyers, so make sure to finish them before selling your home.
15. Decorate Your Bathrooms
Professional stagers recommend having bathroom tile professionally painted to make the bathroom look brand new. Also consider putting out items like rolled towels, baskets and candles to give your bathroom a prim and polished look.
Staged Homes Compared to Unstaged Homes
While it may seem like staging your home is more effort than it’s worth, it has been proven that staging can help potential buyers better visualize the space in your home.
The major difference between homes that are staged and those that are not is more than a difference in overall appearance and ambiance. Homes that have been staged cater to buyers and feature a variety of qualities that could be deemed “buyable” to them. Homes that are not staged either utilize previously owned furniture in its original positioning or are primarily empty.
While staging your home may seem like an added stress, it does come with its benefits.
Staging your house can also make you money. According to the National Association of Realtors, “71 percent of sellers’ agents believe a well-staged environment increases the dollar value buyers are willing to offer.”
You can see and feel the difference. It gives the home a warm inviting and almost ready to move in feel. When you are staging your home try to create a warm open feeling.
Should You Hire a Realtor or Homie to Assist in Selling Your Home?
The start-up business Homie helps people to buy and sell a home without having to enlist a real estate agent. Homie is advertised to cut out the middleman, realtors in this case, and save money in the process. Both realtors and start-up reality businesses, like Homie, serve the same purpose–they intend to assist you in buying or selling a home. When it comes to the question of whether you should hire a realtor or use Homie to help you buy or sell, it really comes down to a matter of personal preference.
If you are more comfortable meeting with a realtor and viewing housing options in person, then hiring may be the way to go. It would not hurt to have a realtor there to better advertise and sell your home to buyers if you are planning on staging your house for potential buyers.
If you are looking for an online approach to buying and selling with little to no hassle, Homie may be the better option of the two. This still allows buyers and sellers the opportunity to see different homes before making a commitment—all without having to pay for a realtor. However, a realtor can provide extremely valuable advice and guidance when staging your home. We reached out to Greg Christensen a realtor for Presido Real Estate to get some advice on staging a home and the current market conditions.
Q&A with Greg Christensen
Q: Should you stage your home when selling?
A: “The answer is yes and no. In this market houses are selling fast! Anything under 300k I wouldn’t recommend staging because there are so many buyers out there who can afford in that range, that it would be a waste of money and effort staging your home.
There is a grey area of if it should be stage or not is about 300K to 600K, you should make that decision with the professional in the business the Realtor. I would recommend staging your home if the price is 600K or up. But there are lot of small things that you can do to make your house look nice for example depersonalizing your home. So, when buyers walk through they can imagine themselves living in the home.”
Q: What are the benefits of staging your home?
A: “There is a huge impact on buyers. It makes it easier to visualize the house as their future house. It makes it look new and desirable to people. You can also find a lot of studies that say sellers who stage their house get more money for it.”
Q: What are the benefits to using a realtor?
A: “There is a huge benefit to using a realtor. But you need to make sure you are using a professional realtor. Remember that buying and selling a house is your biggest purchase of your life. You need to make sure you are getting a professional to help you to do it right. You don’t want any mistakes.
There are so many things that need to be done in order to buy or sell a house for example all of the forms, reports, disclosures that are involve. It is great having a professional to walk you through those steps. There are lots of studies out there that show when using a Realtor, you make more money on the sale of you house, even after paying for their commissions.”
Q: How should I prepare my home to sell?
A: “I would have to say it is different for all houses and that is why you need to ask your Realtor. But one very common thing you must do is depersonalize, so when buyers walk through they can imagine themselves living in the home. Organize your things. Make your house as welcoming as possible.”
Should You Put Your Belongings in Storage?
When staging your home, you are given the choice of whether or not to use your own furniture throughout your home’s decorated rooms. As for any unwanted furniture, while in the staging process, storing your belongings is recommended for the period in between selling your home and buying a home.
Neighbor is a cost-effective way to store your belongings with those in your community. The company connects hosts with renters that are looking for storage space in a way that is minimally invasive and price conscientious.
More than anything, storing items in your household that may not be of use while moving, is an easy way to declutter your home while moving.
With an ever-changing housing market, plans are often subject to change. However, one way to make your next move your most profitable is to look into staging your home for potential buyers. Not only will this help you to stand apart from others on the block, but it will allow the process of buying and selling a home to progress seamlessly. So yes, you should stage your home.