Sunday, April 1, 2012

Vacant Staging.....Is it worth it?

I read an article recently that asked......why stage a vacant house? Many people think it’s a waste of money…..just leave it empty so that the buyers can see how spacious it is, etc. But recent statistics show that vacant homes do not sell as fast as furnished/staged homes and they usually sell for less money. Why is that? There are a few reasons:

1. I believe it is mainly because the vast majority of people buy a house on emotion. People like to buy a home not a house. They want to get that ‘I could live here!” feeling. It is difficult, if not impossible, to get that homey, inviting feeling if the house is vacant.

2. In a vacant home, most buyers have difficulty determining the actual size of the room and what would fit in it. They think, “Will my sofa fit here”? or “Can I fit my large dining table here”? Take all doubt from their minds….show them! In reality small rooms look larger when properly furnished.

3. The first impression 94% of buyers will get of any house is from the online photos. If the photos simply show a vacant room, it sure won’t stand out against a similar home that is beautifully furnished/staged.

4. The majority of people cannot envision themselves living in a vacant house. They cannot imagine their family sitting down to dinner at a non-exsistent table, or cuddled up on the couch watching TV if there is no couch and no TV.

5. A vacant house puts equal emphasis on the positives and negatives of a house. Yes, buyers may be able to clearly see the architecture of a vacant house but they will also clearly see an oddly placed window/door, the not-so-neutral paint colors, etc. How much better to emphasize the architecture with beautiful staging techniques and play down the oddly placed window/door by showing how to actually place furniture and accessories to make it work. Even odd paint colors can work so much better when incorporated into the overall plan of the stager.

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