10 Things Your Home Stager Wants You To Know

Dated: 09/08/2015

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A professional home stager is almost a magician. They are skilled at turning the most unmarketable houses into a visually stunning piece of prime real estate. In a single swipe, they somehow manage to turn dull and drab houses into trendy, eye-catching masterpieces that demand homebuyer attention. But their job isn’t as easy as waving a magic wand.

Prepping your home for getting the best possible offers is tough. It usually means ripping away every piece of your personality from every room to create an inviting canvas any homebuyer can instantly look at and see potential. You might liken it to the Mirror of Erised from Harry Potter. Anyone who gazed into the mirror saw not what was but what their heart desired, and this is exactly what you want prospective buyers to experience when they look at your house.

  • Don’t Take it Personally

If you hire a home stager, you’re making a smart decision. Their professional skills can dramatically increase the potential for a quick sale, but if a home stager could tell you just one thing, it’d be this: don’t take it personally!

You love your living room, you adore your kitchen, and you worked hard to get just the right color scheme in your bedroom. But here’s the thing: when a professional stager tells you what to change, don’t be offended. It’s not that your style sucks; it’s that you’re going for a new look – the buy me now look.

  • Junk Your Stuff

Whether a packrat or a practical decorator, we’re all attached to our stuff. From the paintings on the walls to the throw rugs in the hallway, a certain sentiment is present in our house.

When you start to stage, the fact that you’re actually moving hits. The family pictures and favorite paintings come down. It’s an emotional time, but you need to take on the attitude of it being time to junk your stuff. Don’t worry, we’re not talking about literally junking your stuff, but it is time to box it, move it, and make way for the stager before they arrive.

  • Move It on Out

Staging a home becomes infinitely easier when it’s vacant. The sooner you can move out, the better. The professional stager will be the first to admit it’s the easiest for everyone involved, from you and your pets to potential homebuyers.

If you have no choice but to occupy your house while trying to sell it, you can still have it staged. It’s harder to accommodate daily living while staging well, but it can be done.

  • Avoid the Camera

According to the 2014 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, over 90 percent of buyers go to the Internet to look for homes, which means they’re surfing through photos. The majority of serious homebuyers don’t waste their time with listings that don’t have good photos, which is where your stager comes in.

A home stager will photograph your home to highlight its highs, downplay any lows, and make onlookers want to come for a visit. One of the best things you can do during this process is avoid the camera. Stay out of the pictures and let them do their work.

  • Keep the Property in Tip Top Shape

Whether you’re living in the house until it sells or not, one of the key things you can do is keep it in tip top shape. Staging makes the house appealing, but it’s your job to maintain it. The house prospective buyers come to see needs to live up to the photos they’ve seen.

  • Get Your Money’s Worth

You cannot hire a stager at the last minute. Well, you can, but you won’t get your money’s worth. Asking a stager to work magic with limited to no time is like expecting a wedding cake designer to slap together the perfect cake in 45 minutes; it’s bound to come out half baked.

Staging takes time and it costs money, sometimes up to $1,200. It sounds like a lot, but it’s an investment in a sale that could easily profit you thousands of dollars. Invest wisely by giving the stager plenty of time to stage properly.

  • Stay on Schedule

A stager will make a list of recommendations. Your goal should be to make those changes as quickly as possible. If you’re renovating, know that the stager probably won’t be able to do much until renovations are complete. From the small to the large jobs, timing is everything.

Talk about a schedule with your stager. Together, you can plan the steps to having your house completely ready for the eyes of prospective homebuyers.

  • Don’t Go Overboard

When it comes to staging, it’s easy to go overboard. You can go crazy with decorating or under decorating, but chances are you’ll do too much without realizing it. The key to a good staging is to avoid going overboard, which means you need to trust your stager from the start. Sometimes the best course of action is to agree to disagree, especially if they’re highly recommended and good at what they do.

  • The Outside Matters

Stagers know the importance of every detail, and they won’t overlook the exterior of your house. Pressure washing can do amazing things. Light landscaping can also make a huge difference without costing an excessive amount of money.

  • Let Go

Finally, one of the biggest things every stager wants you to know is that it’s okay to let go. Your home is your home. You spent years making it yours and building memories. Chances are you’re selling to move to a bigger, better home.

As you make plans and work toward a sale, letting go and giving the professionals the reigns is one of the best means of minimizing stress. Your home stager will ensure your home is an eye catcher. Your real estate agent will ensure your home is listed. Together, you’ll form a team dedicated to selling your house for the highest price possible. If you’re staging a house in Hampton Roads, start sizing up the competition by exploring the area’s real estate overview today.

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Chenea Powell

Whether it is your first home or the home you plan to retire in, I will be there to ease the process every step of the way! I find great pleasure in helping people achieve their goals in real estate a....

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