To Stage or Not to Stage? You better Stage!
William Shakespeare wrote “All the world’s a stage” in his work “As You Like It” and in many ways he was correct. Real Estate in today’s world is all about marketing, marketing and marketing. How do we get your home out to the public? How do we describe your home on the MLS? Will we do an open house? All of these questions are valid. Yet what entices the perspective Buyer and when they tour your home what will they find? To stage is a vital piece to marketing your listing. Just as a crew sets up the stage for the next performance a Seller must do the same for their abode. To a Buyer your home is another product competing against other products similar to your own. A Buyer does not have the attachment to the property unlike the owner. Basically you’re selling an expensive widget. Like the crew for a great Broadway production the Seller must present his home to an audience also, the Seller’s audience is the Buyers.
There are many levels of staging. In some cases the Seller can stage a house himself in others they may need professional help. Staging not only show cases a home but can also de-personalizes and that is important. It is always a turn-off for a Buyer to think they are intruding into someone else’s life. When you have family photos hanging on the wall, kids artwork or a favorite worn out comfy chair in the living room, will make the Buyer feel as though they are in someone else’s home…not their own! The Seller must de-personalize their listing to the best of their ability. The Buyer must believe as though your abode can be their home, a place they can raise their children, a place where the Buyer can settle down after a hard day of work. This is the reason why vacant homes sell quicker than those the Seller inhabits. This is the single most important staging advice a Realtor can give to their Seller.
To stage however can go farther. A sloppy home will never sell, at least not for a good price and old furniture unless the furniture is museum grade antiques also hamper a sell. This is where the professionals come into play. They have the equipment and the props to make your property stand out. Sure this may seem like window dressing but in reality window dressing is what staging is. That is why stager’s buy the best looking used books, or fake books. They place a stylish table somewhere. Rearrange the furniture so rooms appear more spacious. They remove eye sores and de-personalize the place. They make the house appealing in a vanilla sort of way and vanilla is what the Seller wants and the Buyer is unconsciously searching for. A staged listing also makes for some great photography, which is important for MLS presentations and getting showings in the first place. The money spent on staging is well worth the cost. So, if you are considering placing your home on the market, might I suggest staging? Shakespeare knew creating a stage was a good thing and so should Sellers. See ya down the road.