Posts Tagged ‘Sell my house’

Home Staging: One of the Three “PRs” to a Successful Sale of Your Home

November 1, 2012

Home staging New York

When selling your home, there are three key strategies to a successful sale of your home.

What is a successful sale? A successful sale achieves these two objectives:

  1. Selling your home quickly
  2. Selling your home for your desired sales price

What are the three key strategies?

  1. PRicing your home correctly
  2. PRomoting it properly
  3. PResenting it at its best

And, you cannot implement just one or two of the strategies without the other(s) and expect to achieve to sell your home quickly and for your desired sale price.

home stagingPRicing Your Home Correctly

Everyone wants to get the highest possible price for their home, though some approach setting the list price unrealistically.  They list it at what they want to get, not what the market will bear.  A home is worth only what someone is willing to pay for it.

The best thing you can do is to engage a real estate agent rather than trying to sell it on your own.  A professional real estate agent knows the local market and what similar properties have recently sold for.  They also know what properties in your condition have sold for.

What are the benefits of PRicing your home correctly?

  • It attracts more potential buyers, and attracts them early in the sales cycle
  • The more potential buyers, the greater the number of potential offers
  • The more offers, the more potential for a bidding war
  • Properties priced at their proper value make it easier for buyers to secure a mortgage
  • There is no need for price reductions (a.k.a. “chasing the market”), which make the seller appear desperate to sell and the buyer to question if it’s still overpriced since it wasn’t priced properly to begin with
  • It will sell more quickly than  if it was not properly priced from the beginning

Home Staging New York CityPRomoting It Properly

Over 90% of home buyers start their search on the Internet, so it’s important that your home be found, and once found, it is displayed attractively.

Again, using a professional real estate agent will increase the likelihood of both your home being found and that it is listed online in a way to attract buyers.  Be sure to ask them for their marketing plan, which should include more than how it is listed on the internet.

There are many, many things that an agent can do to promote your home, and this is not an exhaustive list:

  • Hiring a professional photographer who specializes in taking real estate listing photos
  • Preparing the listing information in a way to highlight the best aspects of your home and neighborhood
  • Holding open houses with fellow real estate agents and potential buyers, and knowing when to hold them
  • Using social media to promote your home
  • Mining their contacts to promote your home
  • Preparing property-specific sales materials, including brochures or one page handouts

PResenting It At Its Best

So, you’ve priced the home properly and your agent comes up with a great marketing plan.

But what is going to create that powerful emotional connection a buyer feels when they walk in the door and just have to have it?

What’s an emotional connection?

  • They picture themselves and their family living there.
  • They want to live the lifestyle you’ve portrayed in your home. Let’s face it, most buyers are trading up, not down.
  • This is where they want to live instead of just “this is a nice room”.

What’s an emotion you don’t want to evoke?

  • The “ick” factor because your home is cluttered, dirty, outdated, smelly and/or in disrepair

  • The feeling from the buyer that they are intruding on your personal space due to too many family photos, religious objects, trophies and collections

apartment staging

  • The knee-jerk reaction of offering a reduced sales price because the home needs repairs and updating
  • In a vacant home, NO emotional connection
  • In a vacant home, bewilderment as to where and if their furniture will fit

bedroom before home staging

  • In a vacant home, wondering what the room is used for

If your home doesn’t look good to begin with, the best photographer in the world is not going to be able to mask that.  And even if they can somehow enhance the appearance of your home with their photography, once a buyer steps in the door and sees it doesn’t look (or function) like what they saw in the photos, you will lose him or her.

A professional home stager knows how present your home in its best possible light by:

  • Eliminating the “ick” factor and your personal taste from the home (remember, your home is now a product to be marketed)

after staging

  • Knowing the target buyer market and appealing to that market through staging with the right furniture and decorative accessories

after home staging

  • Implementing inexpensive updates to enhance the home’s appeal without expensive renovations

Before Staging

Before Updates

After staging

After Painting and Replacing Light Fixtures

  • Properly using furniture and decorative accessories to define the rooms

After staging

  • Emphasizing the positive features of your home and downplaying the negative features

After staging

Furniture, decor and window sheers downplay the brick building out the window

Really, the sales process starts with home staging.  By staging your home (PResenting it at its best), your photos will look great online which will help get buyers in the door (PRomoting it properly).  Home staging can even increase the list price and ultimate sales price of the home (PRicing it properly).

© Copyright 2012 Designed to Appeal, LLC.  All Rights Reserved.

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About the Author: Donna Dazzo is president and owner of Designed to Appeal, a home staging company serving New York City and the Hamptons. Designed to Appeal helps homeowners and real estate agents sell homes quickly and profitably, by expertly creating an environment that buyers want to live in. Designed to Appeal also helps homeowners not looking to sell with interior redesign, which involves using mostly what the homeowner already has. Donna writes frequently on home staging and interior decorating and design topics.
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DIY Home Staging Returns 299% of Your Investment

January 18, 2011

Low cost, do-it-yourself home improvements produce a significant return on investment when a home is sold.

HomeGain just released the findings of their survey of 600 real estate agents nationwide to determine the top 10 low-cost (less than $5,000), do-it-yourself  home improvements for people getting their home ready to sell.

Based upon return on investment (ROI), Home Staging ranked 3rd as the most profitable improvement that can be made to a home, yielding a 299% ROI.  An average investment in home staging of $550 produced a $2,194 price increase.

Home staging as defined by the survey includes adding fresh flowers; removing personal items; reducing clutter; rearranging furniture; adding new props or furniture to enhance room/s; playing soft music; and hanging artwork on walls.  A home staging checklist compiled by HomeGain offers more tips for making the home attractive to buyers so that they can envision themselves living there.

Cleaning and Decluttering ranked number 1, with a 586% ROI.  Almost every real estate agent (99%) recommended this in the survey.

Cleaning and decluttering was followed by Lightening and Brightening which produced a 313% ROI.  Lightening and Brightening include opening windows; cleaning windows and skylights inside and outside; replacing old curtains or removing curtains; removing other obstacles from windows blocking light; repairing lighting fixtures; and making sure windows open easily. 97% of real estate agents recommend this step.

80% of agents surveyed recommended home staging to their clients.  Here are what a few had to say:

“We believe staging is so critical. We own our own staging company and provide a $3,000 staging for free as a part of our listing package.” – Carl Medford, California Prudential Realty, Castro Valley, California

“Staging, I think, is the most important item when selling a home. I usually give my clients a free consultation, so no need to hire anyone. But if they hire someone, I think it’s the best money they will ever spend. You need a neutral party who knows what homebuyers focus on when looking at homes.” – Harry Martin, RE/MAX United, Escondido, California

“Homes that are “Priced to Sell” and “Staged” to look better than all other competitive listings are the homes that are selling in this challenging housing market.” – David Jaffe, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Arlington Heights, Illinois

“I always tell clients to stage. It’s more effective than price reductions and usually costs less in the long run.” – Edward Sullivan, Massachusetts

Here are the full results of the survey:

For more information on this survey, as well as for definitions and homeowner checklists for each improvement, click here.

© Copyright 2011 Designed to Appeal, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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About the Author: Donna Dazzo is president and owner of Designed to Appeal, a home staging company serving New York City and the Hamptons. Designed to Appeal helps homeowners and real estate agents sell homes quickly and profitably, by expertly creating an environment that buyers want to live in. Designed to Appeal also helps homeowners not looking to sell with interior redesign, which involves using mostly what the homeowner already has. Donna writes frequently on home staging and interior decorating and design topics.

Follow DonnaDazzo on Twitter

 
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Home Staging New York: But…but…but – Objections to Home Staging, Overcome

June 11, 2010

Whether it’s your home for sale or your client’s home for sale, not every seller is convinced right off the bat that staging the home is something as necessary as getting a home inspection or a pre-approved mortgage is for the buyer.

So if you find yourself or your clients asking these questions, carefully consider these answers before you make that final decision not to stage.

But, why would I want to be spending money when I can’t afford to?  I just need to sell my house/apartment. 

The softer the market, the more you must differentiate the property from others crowding the market.  Wouldn’t it be great to get a bidding war going because your property looks so much better than everyone else’s? Remember, staging is an investment not an expense.  A study by the Real Estate Staging Association showed that homes that were staged after being on the market for a while, spent 78% less time on the market than before they were staged.  Home staging can increase profit in two ways – by increasing value and by reducing expenses (mortgage, taxes, utilities) by decreasing the time the home is on the market.  And according to the National Association of Realtors, the longer the home is on the market, the lower the selling price will be.

But, why can’t buyers just look past the décor and envision themselves living here? 

Only 10% of buyers can visualize the potential of a home.  Most buyers cannot look past a cluttered or unappealing room.  And while most of them start out looking for a home based upon logical criteria, for example, 4 bedrooms, family room with a fireplace, they end up purchasing based upon an emotional connection they feel when they’re in the home.  When a house feels like home, they will reprioritize their list. They may be willing to give up the fireplace because staging has transformed the property into a “dream” and they can envision themselves living there.  It has to portray a lifestyle they aspire to.

But, my home looks good.  It doesn’t need to be staged. 

Every home that’s for sale can benefit from the objective eye of a professional home stager.  Most homeowners are so used to their home’s flaws they don’t see them anymore.  Also, you cannot view your own home through a buyer’s eyes. Once your home is on the market, it’s a product that needs to be positioned just like any other product on the market.  And it’s not about your taste anymore!

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© Copyright 2010 Designed to Appeal, LLC All Rights Reserved

 

Home Staging New York: What NOT To Do When Selling Your Home

January 31, 2010

I couldn’t believe my eyes!

Here was an apartment featured in the Sunday New York Times’ “On the Market in New York City” column.  As I viewed the pictures of this and the other two properties online with my home staging eyes, I cringed at the thought that  someone thought it was okay to photograph and sell these properties in their current condition.

While they are not horror stories, the three featured properties could all benefit from some free home staging advice.

So here it is:

1.  Upper West Side Condo – the personal photographs and wine bottle collection need to be removed.  Buyers shouldn’t be distracted by these and, more importantly, buyers need to envision themselves living in your space.  They can’t do that with your photos of your family, friends, vacations, etc. staring at them.

Also, while the seller and/or real estate agent think the pulley system for suspending the bicyle from the ceiling is an added feature of the apartment, it is VERY distracting.  The buyers’ eyes will immediately go towards that rather than the beautifully renovated kitchen with its unique oval window.

And couldn’t the bed have been made better before shooting the photo?  It looks like at the last minute the comforter and toss pillow were just thrown on the bed.

2.  Upper East Side Co-op – home staging is all about making the house or apartment appealing to the broad range of buyers.  While the homeowner might love the orange walls in the living room, MOST buyers won’t.  It’s okay to keep the orange toss pillows as an accent color, but it’s time to break out the paint and change the color of the walls to something more neutral (not white, but a soft beige).

3.  Clinton Hill Co-op – OMG!!! Is that a dog and a kitty litter box in the photo??  Again, when your home is for sale, it must appeal to the broad range of buyers.  You might love your dog and your cat, but not everyone is an animal lover.  And worse, some potential buyers may be allergic to animals, so they wouldn’t even consider looking at this apartment for their new home. 

This apartment could also benefit by removing the highly taste-specific wallpaper and thinning out the book collection in its wall-sized bookshelves.

Copyright  © 2010 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York – Paint: One of the most effective home staging tools

November 17, 2009

When your home is for sale, it is now a product that needs to appeal to the greatest number of buyers.  Walls, along with the floors, are the bones of a home and they need to be in good condition and neutral in appearance so that they do appeal to the greatest number of buyers.

  • People are heavily influenced by color, and it is difficult for buyers to look past the dark purple or other strong colors on the walls.
  • Paint is an inexpensive but effective way to re-decorate a room. It can update a kitchen or bathroom, make a small room seem to be larger, and make architectural details like molding or built-ins pop. 
  • Dirty and scratched walls and peeling paint turn off buyers. 
  • Potential buyers will be thinking about how they have to take the time and spend the money to repaint; or even worse, thinking ‘I don’t want to buy this place”. 
  • Painting does cost money for both labor and materials, but its benefits far exceed its cost.  Even if the buyer is willing to make an offer, you can bet it will be less than asking to compensate for the paint job they will have to do.

Paint Sheens (all Benjamin Moore Regal)

 Follow these guidelines for choosing paint finishes:

  • Flat – good for ceilings (use Benjamin Moore Decorator’s White).  Can also be used for walls if the walls have a lot of imperfections as these would be more noticeable when painted with a sheen or gloss.  However, flat paint is more difficult to clean than paint with a sheen or gloss.
  • Eggshell – good for bedrooms and living and dining rooms.  Highly washable, durable and stain resistant.
  • Matte – good for busy areas like hallways and kids’ rooms as it is a flat paint but highly stain resistant and durable.
  • Pearl – good for hallways, bathroom and kitchen walls, and kids’ rooms as it is highly durable and can withstand repeated washings.
  • Semi-Gloss – good for trim and doors, and also kitchen and bathrooms. It is highly durable, scrubbable and washable.  Use a color in the white family to make trim pop.

If you prefer to choose one finish for walls in all rooms, then Eggshell is recommended.

Paint Colors

Before purchasing any paint, test a sample on the wall.  Benjamin Moore now sells small jars of the most popular colors, or invest in purchasing a quart.  If the wall has a dark color on it, hold a white piece of paper next to your sample.  Look at your sample painted swatch at different times of the day to see if it changes color with the lighting.

When painting a home that is for sale, it is best to stick with neutral colors.  And that doesn’t mean white, as it is very stark and cold.  It also doesn’t mean it has to be some variation of off-white or beige, but can be a certain shade of green, blue, brown, gold or earth-toned red.

If you wish to “play it safe”, the following is a list of colors that are in the off-white or beige category.

Recommended Neutral Paint Colors For Walls 

Below are color swatches of my recommended netural paint colors, as well as a list of the colors.  Keep in mind that the appearance of the color on the swatch may not reflect it’s true color as it depends upon the monitor settings with which you are viewing them.

  • Natural Wicker (OC-1)
  • Elephant Tusk (OC-8)
  • Muslin (OC-12)
  • Cedar Key (OC-16)
  • Collingwood (OC-28)
  • Tapestry Beige (OC-32)
  • Misty Air (OC-44)
  • Hazy Skies (OC-48)
  • Gentle Cream (OC-96)
  • Pale Celery (OC-116)
  • Celery Salt (OC-136)
  • Shelburne Buff (HC-28)
  • Edgecombe Gray (HC-173)
  • Manchester Tan (HC-81)
  • Rich Cream (2153-60)

 Note:  All Benjamin Moore

Do you have any favorite neutral colors you use or recommend?  I’d love to add them to my list.

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York: Are Home Sellers Smarter than Real Estate Agents When It Comes to Staging?

November 9, 2009

We have all either seen or heard of that TV show “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?” where adults try to answer questions that a fifth grader could answer.  You assume the adults would know the answers because…well they’re adults and have had more years of life and learning under their belt.  Well, often that’s not the case…the fifth graders usually win.

I found myself this past week wondering if home sellers were smarter than real estate agents. I was contacted by two homeowners who were interested in staging their vacant investment properties.  Both of the properties were in New York City, however one was for sale and the other was a very high-end rental.

Both homeowners realized that they needed to furnish and accessorize their properties in order to stand out from the other properties on the market for rent and for sale.  In fact, one of the homeowners believed in staging so much, she had staged by herself another of her investment properties, which is for sale.  But after realizing it was a lot of work and very tiring (welcome to my world!), she decided to hire a professional for her rental property.

This homeowner told me that her real estate agent didn’t think it was necessary to furnish either apartment.  The agent felt they would sell and rent without staging.

I did a quick check of the rental unit on www.streeteasy.com, and it showed competitive rentals in the same price range, location and type of building.  One of the units had one bedroom more than the subject unit, AND there were pictures of furnished rooms for prospective renters to imagine themselves living in!

More than 80% of buyers and renters start their search online, so don’t you think photos of furnished and decorated rooms would be more appealing than those that are not?

What if you were looking online and saw these photos?

Bedroom Before

IMG_3026

What if you were online and saw THESE photos?

Bedroom AfterLiving Room - cropped left

In the other case where I was contacted by the homeowner whose property was for sale, I spoke to the real estate agent myself, not knowing in advance her position on home staging.  When I told her who I was and that I had been to the property in order to prepare a home staging proposal, she vehemently stated “No furniture!”.  She went on to state that she had sold other units in the townhouse complex and she was able to sell the units without them being furnished.  She also told me what she was listing the property at and that she was going to probably accept offers that were 5% less.

So I told her that…

The cost of staging is almost ALWAYS less than the first price reduction and in this case it was (2%).

Then I told her WHY the units should be furnished, and after every one of my statements, she said “I disagree!”

  • Empty rooms appear smaller than they really are
  • No emotional connection can be felt when buyers walk into an empty house
  • Most buyers can’t picture where there furniture will go and if it will fit
  • Most buyers can’t imagine themselves living there if there is nothing there
  • Small defects stand out because there’s nothing else to look at

I could have given her other reasons, but I got tired of hearing “I disagree!”.

What do you think?  Are home sellers smarter than real estate agents when it comes to home staging and selling homes?

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York: Top 10 Mistakes Sellers Make When Presenting Their Homes for Sale – Part II

October 30, 2009

Last week I shared with you the first five of the Top 10 Mistakes home sellers make when they present their home to prospective buyers.

To recap they were:

  1. Paint problems
  2. Dirty and/or worn carpeting and floors
  3. Pets and their accoutrement
  4. Personalized decor
  5. Dated or worn hardware and fixtures

This week I focus on the remainder of the Top 10 Mistakes.

Manfredi bathroom bef6.  Dirty, Cluttered or Untidy Interior or Exterior – Despite what sellers might think, buyers cannot see past dirt and clutter.  It’s extremely important that both the interior and exterior of the home, including the yard, be clean and tidy.  Kitchens and bathrooms need to be whistle-clean.

 IMG_1571 - cropped7.  Dated or Inappropriate Window Treatments – Anything dated in a home is a turn-off to a potential buyer and window treatments are one of them. If the drapes are from the early to mid-90s, chances are they are too heavy and too dated.  Remove them and replace them with panel drapes on a rod – inexpensive ones can be found at Target and JC Penney.

8. Bad Furniture Arrangements – Furniture that doesn’t highlight the room’s best features are doing the seller a disservice.  For example, a fireplace is usually THE focal point in a room, and the furniture should be arranged around it so that the eye is drawn to the fireplace.  Also, furniture should not block the flow of being able to walk through the room. It should not block being able to open a door.  Lastly, the furniture in the room should define the purpose of the room.  In the picture below, is this a guest room, an office or a game room?

pool table

 blocked windows9.  Blocked Lighting/Dirty Windows – Buyers treasure natural light and sellers need to do everything to maximize it.  Trim back or remove overgrown bushes and trees that are blocking the windows, clean the windows, open up the drapes, and even remove the screens while the home is on the market to let in more natural light.  For more tips to lighten and brighten a home, click here.

10.  Too Much or Too Large Furniture – Think LESS IS MORE!  Remember that the purpose of furniture when selling a home is to define the purpose of the room (e.g., dining room, not home office or children’s playroom) and to show what will fit where (e.g., king size bed).  It is not meant to show that you can provide seating for 15 in your living room and every seat has a side table to rest drinks on and the bedroom is large enough to hold 3 dressers. Also, the size of the furniture needs to be in balance with the scale of the room and the other furniture in it.

 cahn dining room

Also, check out HGTV’s 10 Best Kept Secrets When Selling a Home.

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York: Top 10 Mistakes Sellers Make When Presenting Their Homes for Sale – Part I

October 24, 2009

Do you know the Top 10 Mistakes home sellers make about how they present their homes to prospective buyers?  And most home sellers also make the overriding mistake of believing that buyers “can see past this”. 

Well, it’s simply not true.  Only 10% of prospective buyers can visualize the potential of your home.  

This week I focus on the first Top 5 Mistakes.  I will share the remaining five with you next week.  And as you will see, ameliorating these mistakes costs little or none. 

yellow cabinets1.  Paint Problems – too often prospective buyers can’t get past the ugly shade of green that the house is painted or the purple in the bedroom. For both the exterior and interior it is best to stick to neutral colors, EXCEPT 1) you can use a bright contrasting color like red for a front door, and 2) DON’T use white on the interior walls as it’s stark and cold (it’s fine for trim and ceilings).  Paint issues involve both color and the condition of the paint. Paint is one of the most inexpensive ways to freshen up any space.  Walls and floors are the “bones” of any interior space and both should be in good condition.

dirty rug

2.  Dirty or worn carpet and/or floors – .as just stated, walls and floors are the “bones” of the house or apartment and should be in good condition.  If carpets are old, outdated and badly stained, it’s best to remove them.  Sometimes a beautiful hardwood floor awaits underneath. If not, replace with inexpensive wall to wall carpeting.  Hardwood floors in bad condition should be refinished.  You don’t want to give your buyer a mental checklist of repairs they need to do so that they either walk away or bid lower. 

dog3.  Pets and their “accoutrement” –  you may love your pets, but not every buyer will.  Leaving your pets in the house while it’s being shown is a BIG mistake.  Removing them but leaving behind pet bowls, kitty litter boxes, leashes and dog cages is also a BIG mistake.  Remove all traces of your pets including hair and odor. 

4.  Personalized Decor – displaying family photos, children’s artwork, trophies, awards, collections and your prized deer head on the wall does NOT allow the buyer to imagine living in your space.  Plus these items are also a distraction.  You want the buyers to look at your house, not your children’s baby photos.

trophies

outdated fixtures5.  Dated or worn hardware and fixtures – if floors and walls are the bones of the house, then hardware and fixtures are the “jewelry”.  Outdated or tarnished door handles on kitchen and bathroom cabinets, and outdated lighting fixtures and faucets are a turn-off to prospective buyers.  Replacing these can update the look of a bathroom or kitchen very inexpensively.  And don’t forget to replace scratched doorknobs on doors and broken or non-matching lightswitch plates. 

 

 

Stay tuned next week for the remaining five mistakes home sellers make when presenting their homes.

 Also, check out HGTV’s top 25 Real Estate Mistakes when buying and selling a home.

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York: Lighten and Brighten Your Way to a Successful Sale of Your Home

October 16, 2009

When selling a home, it is very important that it be light and bright.  Buyers do not respond well to dark spaces. 

Here are a few home staging tips and tricks to brighten up your home: 

  • Remove screens from windows – this lets more of the natural light through
  • Wash the windows – seems to be common sense, but you’d be surprised at what a difference it makes!
  • Remove awnings from windows and over doors
  • Trim or remove overgrown bushes and trees that are in front of windows

IMG_2274 - cropped - 70FPR bdrm

  • Replace drapes with sheers where possible – sheers provide warmth and softness to a room but still let the light show through
  • Swap out low wattage bulbs for higher wattage ones

 

  • Keep all lights turned on during an open house or showings
  • Use uplighting in dark corners – either a tall floor lamp called a torchiere or a can light placed on the floor
  • Place wall and floor mirrors where they can reflect natural lightIMG_1005
  • Use neutral paint colors on the walls
  • Brighten up dark furnishings with throw pillows or a table runner in bright colors

 

Doing these simple and inexpensive changes to “lighten and brighten” when selling your home can reap its rewards – a 355% return on your investment, according to a Home Gain survey from 2007.

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York – Realtors: Do You Have “But I Can Do It Myself” Syndrome?

October 8, 2009

This past week I made a couple of presentations regarding Home Staging to real estate agents at their weekly meetings.  In chatting with one of them after my presentation, he said that he usually does his own staging.  This can involve anything as simple as telling the client to declutter to as time-consuming as going shopping for new bedding.    When I asked him why he does this instead of hiring a home stager, he said “well, this way I don’t have to convince my client to spend money.  Also,  I can do what stagers do”.

So ask yourself, does this sound like you?

And if the answer is YES, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you want to tell your clients their home is untidy and has too much stuff in it?
  • Do you want to tell you clients to get rid of family photos and their prized collections?
  • Do you want to tell your clients that their home smells like a cat or a dog?
  • Do you know how to get a vacant home fully furnished and accessorized?
  • Do you have the time to shop for bedding, towels, knickknacks, etc? 
  • Do you want to spend hours deciding the optimal placement of furniture and accessories?
  • Do you really have the eye of an interior decorator or a home stager?
  • Are you comfortable recommending paint colors?
  • What do you do when the husband and wife don’t agree with your “staging” recommendations? Whose side do you take?
  • Is this how you want to be spending your time?
  • Do you think your client would appreciate you taking time away from marketing their home rather than leaving this up to a professional?

So the next time you think “But I can do this myself”, think about the fact that it’s the same as a seller thinking they don’t need a real estate agent to market and sell their home.  You know that you can do a much better job than they can because of your experience, knowledge and contacts, to name a few qualifications.

Hiring a home staging professional is the way to go if you want the job done right.

Related post: Homeowners: Do You Have “But I Can Do It Myself Syndrome”?

Copyright  © 2009 Designed to Appeal, LLC – All Rights Reserved

Home Staging New York – Homeowners: Do You Have the “I Can Do It Myself” Syndrome?

October 2, 2009

hammerMany homeowners whose homes are about to go on the market, would rather do it themselves than hire a professional home stager because they think they can, or they think they will save money. 

Either way, it’s best to leave it up to a professional.  While there a few things you can do to get the ball rolling, such as decluttering and packing away items you won’t use while the home is on the market, do you really know what to do and have the time to do it? 

Recently I did an estimate for a staging of a vacant apartment in Manhattan.  I was told by the real estate agent that the homeowner wanted to interview and get estimates from three stagers.

After submitting my proposal, I was told that the homeowner decided to “stage” the apartment himself. 

Here I thought my competition was the other stagers, but in fact it was the homeowner himself! 

While I understand homeowners’ perceived need to save money by doing it themselves, they really shouldn’t because they… 

…cannot view their own home through a buyer’s eyes

…cannot view their own home objectively

…are so used to their home’s flaws, they don’t see them anymore

              (I once had a client who completely forgot she put pink plastic over her smoke detector so it wouldn’t sound when she was cooking – meanwhile she passed by it every day on her way through the entry foyer!)

…don’t have a designer’s eye

…don’t have the expertise of a professional stager as to what needs to be done or not

…may not have the time or patience

…are already overwhelmed with looking for a new house and moving.

So the next time you are thinking of doing it yourself, stop and think about it and ask yourself: 

Do I really know what I’m doing? Is this how I want to be spending my time?

Related post: Realtors: Do You Have the “But I Can Do It Myself” Syndrome?

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