Staging has become such a buzz word in today’s real estate market. The word is thrown around a lot, but at the end of the day, what does it really mean? I look at staging almost literally…when you “set the stage” for a theatrical production, you are setting the tone, conjuring emotions and suggesting a place in which something happens. Similarly with staging, we are setting the scene…hopefully a clean, well-cared for, updated, easy to live in and visually pleasing home. This staging does not necessarily mean completely furnishing (in the case of a vacant home), nor does it mean interior designing (a lived in home). A good stager knows that there are degrees of staging…and every home/owner/situation calls for differing degrees of staging depending on time/money/and return on investment. I like to break staging into two parts:
Repair, repaint, and replace all the permanent features of the home. This includes walls, fireplaces, light fixtures, windows, banisters, carpet, pavers…the list is yours.
Clean, clean clean until it shines. This includes a deep cleaning of windows, grout, porcelain…especially bathrooms and kitchens
Remove “stuff.” Think tasteful hotel…just a hint of home, nothing too personal, too loud or too soft, too pink or black…this is all that clutter that makes a home yours. Remove what makes the home yours so that someone else can mentally move in…
(2) Feature: Once these condition items are done, a seller can consider traffic flow with furniture arrangements that maximize square footage(that is what we are selling); accents that move the buyers eye from feature to feature; furniture to give a sense of scale (yes, my dining set will fit); and little “stages” that suggest a homey scene…
Sellers are in the driver’s seat here…they can choose to do none, some or all of the suggested staging…weigh the pros and cons and work out what you want and what you can do…Happy Home Staging!