In one moment, the idea has entered your mind to sell your house. In the next, you realize how much needs to be done to accomplish this. How will you find the right Realtor®? When will the house be ready? How much is your house worth? What will you do to get your house ready and how much will it cost?

There is a lot to consider and you will get all kinds of advice. Realtors® may be suggesting that you don’t have to do a thing and your house will sell. Beware of this train of thought. While you may sell your house quite quickly, if a buyer has to strain to see the qualities of the home they aren’t likely to pay anywhere near your asking price. If the house appears in disarray the buyers will wonder what else is wrong and become discouraged. They’ll assume there are more repairs to be made and take that into account when contemplating an offer.

“It’s a big mistake to think there’s no need to decorate your home to sell. By decorating your home to appeal to the greatest number of buyers you dramatically improve the odds of having more offers. Clearly if you have 10 couples bidding on your home it will sell for more than if only 2 or 3 are bidding on it. I’ve seen homes sell for over asking because of the ‘feeding frenzy’ that can be created by home staging.

A professional home stager will be focused on preparing your home, ideally, before the Realtor® views it, attaches a sale price or lists it. Realtors® run into the awkward position of wanting your listing yet not having a polite way to say, “You need to do some serious work in here.”

Staging Spaces will be able to pinpoint those unflattering aspects of décor, clutter, filth and disrepair. They will bring out the home’s best features and ensure that the owners’ belongings aren’t hindering the sale.

Home staging directs a minimal investment for huge impact. Your home should represent a complete package to the buyer and nothing should be ‘as is’. Your budget, whatever it is, should pack punch. Are you getting directed towards spending over your budget? Do the suggestions seem too intensive or lengthy for your target time frame?

Hiring a home stager also comes down to training. There are several home staging companies offering courses through out North America, all founded by people who have built successful staging companies. While home stagers receive certificates of completion, there is no independent organization or school that provides testing, who grant accreditation or monitors their work.

However you should be able to determine their qualifications through the following guidelines:

• Ask to view a portfolio of completed projects, ask about the projects to ensure that they are showing you their work, not someone else’s
• Ask for testimonials, references and success stories
• Are they recognized as being a leader in their field?
• Can they work with a variety of styles?
• A website with information, examples and portfolio
• Email address
• Liability insurance
• In house consultation services
• Access to physical samples of paint chips, laminate, textiles etc.
• Experience, training and “know how”
• Client support and understanding
• Rental items such as plants, art, and decor

A consultation should include:
• A consultation checklist for you to keep
• A minimum of one to two hours in length
• A start to staging your home to give you an idea of what to do
• The option to complete the work yourselves or to hire their services
• Before/after photos of the home
• Referrals for professionals to assist with repairs etc.

Home staging services can run anywhere between $75-$125/hour plus there is usually an initial consultation fee. This should be kept in perspective, however. You may be someone who just needs a direction and can take the project from there. The initial consultation may be all that is required in some instances.

A staging bill could save you considerable money and wasted time on the market… even if it has saved you a week. Your staged home will have a more accurate asking price and could attract multiple offers to sell within days.

Home staging has some huge benefits. Not only will it keep you organized and prepared, it can also save you from considerable stress. Once you discover how great your house can look to sell it you may decide to enlist Staging Spaces to help settle you into your new home!  Many clients have!

Stacey Haluka
Staging Spaces
The first stage to selling your house

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