Home Staging: The Sneakiest Way to Get Top Dollar for Your Home
In most parts of the country, real estate prices are appreciating, buyers are competing with one another for limited inventory, and things are looking good for homeowners. But for those who really want to get top dollar, home staging is the way to go.
The ROI of Home Staging
Home staging is simply the process of clearing out your personal belongings and hiring an interior designer or home staging company to come in and decorate your living spaces with furniture and accessories that appeal to buyers.
As Green Residential points out, “Staging does little to increase the objective value of your home, but it has a dramatic psychological effect on the people viewing it, making them more likely to put in an offer—and possibly making that offer higher.”
How much higher, you may ask? Well, according to a 2017 report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 29 percent of seller’s agents believe staging increases the home value by a 6 to 20 percent. On the flip side, 97 percent of buyer’s agents believe it has at least some effect.
But what do buyers themselves think about home staging? The NAR research suggests that 27 percent are willing to “overlook property faults” when the home is staged, while 40 percent are “more willing to walk through a staged home they saw online.”
Staging Your House
There’s clearly value in staging your house when putting it up for sale, but what are the keys to success? Check out some key pointers from professionals in the industry:
· First impressions. “The first impression is so important and that starts with curb appeal. Make sure you have trimmed all landscaping, freshly mulched, and make sure the front door has a fresh coat of paint,” says Nicole Penalva of Bella Abode Design. Moving into the house, be sure to get the entryway right, since this is where prospective buyers will congregate at the beginning and end of their showings.
· Simplicity. One of the major benefits of home staging is that it gives you a chance to declutter your house and remove all of those little items that you love (but others could care less about). The goal is simplicity and minimalism. If you keep this in mind, you’ll help prospective buyers see your home for what it is (rather than the stuff it contains at the moment).
· Functionality. When selling your house, you want people to feel like it’s functional. It’s fine if you use a spare bedroom as an office, or a dining room as a craft room, but make sure you turn these spaces back into their intended purposes when staging. You want people to see more space and opportunity.
· Lighting. Light, light, and more light. When staging your home for a visit, make sure you’re using as much light as possible. Open up curtains, pull back drapes, and put high wattage bulbs into each and every lamp and fixture in your home. This will make spaces appear bigger and warmer.
Every home has its own quirks and individual style, but the more you appeal to the masses, the better your results will be. And while it probably doesn’t make sense to spend $5,000 staging a $150,000 property, it’s okay to spend some money on staging when you and your agent feel like it’ll provide a boost in value.
Give Your Home a Boost
Home staging doesn’t work if you’re trying to put lipstick on a pig. People will see straight through your ploy. It does, however, work when you already have a nice listing and you want to take it to that next level. And as the research shows, there are plenty of reasons to give it a try.