Answers to some common home staging FAQs
What’s the difference between Home staging, property staging and real estate staging?
None, they are different terms describing the same service of preparing a house for sale and maximizing its “visual value”.
So what exactly is Home Staging?
Home staging is a set of techniques and a bit of an art to get your house to look its best. It could be as simple as rearranging your furniture and accessories and making small repairs and as complex as renting and setting up new furniture, accessories and art, repainting and doing some other minor renovations.
Why is property staging important?
The home staging works, because 9 out of 10 prospective buyers can not get past the decor and are unable to visualize the potential of a house. Clean, decluttered and well decorated home gives buyers a frame of reference and creates a “desirability” factor.
Why should I spend money on a house I am selling?
You should look at home staging as an investment which will pay off at sale time and not as an expense. Even conservative statistics show that staged properties sell in half of the time and for at least 5% more than its non staged neighbors. And a dreaded price reduction will NOT be necessary! Remember, staging costs a fraction of a price reduction and you will recuperate that money many times over at the sale time.
Can (or should I) stage my house myself?
This is one of the most asked home staging questions. Even some real estate agents don’t get the concept of home staging and the fact that there is more to it than cleaning! The good news is that you can certainly do some work to prepare your house and reduce the expense of a professional home stager. Please read our Home Staging Tips to see what you could do yourself. We still recommend the services of a professional Home Stager for the simple reason that it’s very difficult to be objective about your own home and see it with the critical eyes of a buyer. People get used to living a certain way and stop noticing some flaws which could make or break a sale. And, sometimes, a bit of creativity and flair from a property staging consultant will take your house to the next level – from “OK” to “WOW”.
When should I call a Home stager in?
You can stage your property at any time. If you are not using a realtor, you should have a consultation with a Home stager to determine what needs to be done and prioritize the list, depending on your budget. If you are planning to list your house with a realtor, the best time would be to get your house staged BEFORE interviewing real estate agents – by presenting your house at its best, you’ll probably get a higher market estimate from a realtor as well as appealing pictures for the web. But not to worry – even if your house is already listed, it’s still important to stage it and get the agent to come in to re-evaluate it (and take new pictures!).
How and where do I find the best Home Stager for my needs?
Most people search online. You can also ask some realtors, they might recommend a home stager to you. Once you identified some local Home Stagers that serve clients in the Ottawa area, it’s very important to get as much information on their experience and previous projects as possible. Ask for concrete facts, examples and references! You need to be comfortable with the person you’ll be working with, so take your time and choose carefully. Don’t let the cost be your only consideration…
My house is empty – should I stage?
Definitely! Empty homes are harder to sell, please see our page on the topic which will give you all the details.
I will be living in the house until it sells – will home staging work?
Yes. It is more difficult to keep the house perfectly staged at all times when you’re living in it but it is possible to keep it looking decluttered, clean and neat and make some last minute adjustments when a visitor is coming. All the ground work (decluttering, cleaning, fixing, painting, etc) will make a HUGE difference in the look and feel of your property. Please see our section on tips to get all the details.
Do I have to stage the whole house?
It depends. If the house is furnished, most of the time it’s not a huge job to declutter and rearrange existing furniture and accessories. For a few hours of effort and a small investment, the difference can be amazing! On the other hand, if you are selling an empty house, it might be quite expensive to rent/buy furniture and accessories to stage the whole house. In that case, property staging of a few key rooms is all it takes – entrance, living room, dining room and a master bedroom need to be staged at the minimum. Remember, partial staging is always better than none!
How does property staging work?
As previously mentioned, some preliminary things can be done by the seller, such as cleaning and decluttering (and then cleaning and decluttering some more!). On the other hand, a Home stager can offer these services as well, if you have no time or inclination to do the work yourself. The first consultation usually lasts maximum 2 hours for a furnished home and you will kniw where you stand – what needs to be cleaned, decluttered, painted, repaired, moved, rearranged, added, etc. The Home stager can also help you prioritize that list based on your budget and time available. After that, you decide – will you execute all of the property staging work yourself, will you do most of the ground work and will have the stager help you with rearranging furniture and accessories and providing extra WOW factor or will you have the stager organizing and managing the whole project for you? All options are good and depend on you!
For an empty house, the approach is different – the stager will need to help you choose, rent/buy and arrange the furniture and accessories to stage the house. She/he will need to come up with some creative solutions to minimize your investment and get the job done.
How much will the property staging cost?
Each situation is different. Some big houses need very little staging and some small ones could need a lot of work. Give us a call to get a consultation and find out how to get the best sale price on your home!