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Is Your Home a Model Home? Staging to Get Better Offers.

Jeff Scott - January 23, 2018

If you think you’re ready to put your home on the market, consider if it looks ready to sell. While it doesn’t have to be as perfect as designer showcase or model home, if you’d like to get more money for your home, it should come pretty close. A staged home can help you attract better offers from buyers. In a seller’s market like we have in the Seattle/Tacoma area, it can mean an even better sale price.

Why Stage a Home:

If you already live in a pristine, de-personalized, and designer-decorated home, then you might not need staging. However, most of us don’t live like that which means our homes aren’t quite ready to list. Staging a home should be considered part of any savvy marketing plan for your home, and most realtors will advise some degree of staging.

Our homes reflect our personalities and lifestyles. And, while that’s important to you, personal touches can negatively affect how buyers see your home. A professional stager can transform a house into a beautiful, designer-decorated space buyers will covet.

A report by the Keeping Current Matters in their 2017 Profile of Home Staging found that staging a house had a positive impact on a buyer’s offer. ” 50 percent of sellers’ agents reported an increase of one-percent to 10 percent of the dollar value offered by buyers, in comparison to similar homes.” More importantly, the majority of realtors said that staging a home increased the dollar value dramatically and led to multiple offers.

Besides bottom dollar value, staged homes have a better record when it comes to days on the market. According to the Real Estate Stagers Association, a staged house will spend 90-percent less time on the market as compared to empty or unstaged houses.

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Define Staging.

Walking through a home with obviously-used furnishings and personal knick-knacks can distract a buyer and make them feel that they’re invading someone else’s personal space – making difficult to envision themselves in the house.

The ultimate goal of staging is to transform a home into a model house anyone would want to own. A potential buyer should walk through a staged house, be awed, and be able to envision themselves in the house.

For a monthly fee, an interior designer will evaluate your home and temporarily redecorate it with attractive furnishings and accessories. In some cases, it’s a complete overhaul. All or most of your furniture and decorative items are removed and substituted with new furnishings. Sometimes, it’s more of a band-aid solution: replacing or rearranging a few pieces will be enough for a more attractive look. (Here at Nor’West Property Shop we have negotiated your staging needs – It’s FREE) {This will link to another interior page TBD)

Keep in mind that while staging can transform the look of your home, it can’t hide significant flaws. That water tower outside your kitchen window can’t be hidden, and outdated appliances or faucets will still be there, unless…

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Beyond Staging:

Staging is just one part of the equation when it comes to readying your home to be listed. If you want to sell your home, there’s likely some touch-up work needed whether it’s fixing holes in the walls, repainting, or power washing the exterior. In some cases, usually older homes, minor updates can make a house significantly more appealing. A potential buyer can walk through the house and appreciate the home’s features rather than focus on the need to spend more time and money replacing outdated appliances or ugly wallpaper.

An experienced realtor and skilled stager can advise a homeowner on what changes would have the most significant impact and worth an upfront investment.

Why Stage in a Seller’s Market?

It’s tempting in a booming real estate market like Seattle’s to not want to spend money (or time) on staging. However, not staging your home means you’re competing with beautifully-decorated homes, including new construction staged as model homes.

In a 2013 interview with the Real Estate Stagers Association, real estate guru Barbara Corcoran from ABC’s Shark Tank said staging is necessary, in part because the Internet has transformed how potential buyers see a house. Today, more than ever, staging is needed, said Corcoran. “Why wouldn’t someone stage a home, if they want to get more money for their house?” said Corcoran. “People can’t see through stuff, your stuff, and it’s got to look beautiful if you want the buyer to come in and make a bid.”

For more resources on staging, click here.

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