Neighborhoods, Speedy Delivery , a Handy Man, and Lady Aberlin Hospitality... Mr. Rogers Neighborhood had great archetypal characters, life lessons and more... but did you know that Mr. Rogers taught principles in Real Estate Staging as well as teaching for the younger generation?
Here is the short list:
- Fix the Broken Stuff... Handy Man Negri keeps the neighborhood in pristine condition. This makes it a fun and safe place. In staging a house in disrepair is anything but welcoming, and encourages buyers to low-ball the bid, if they bid at all... most will walk away, as they are looking for something that is "move-in ready."
- Keep Things Neat, Tidy and"Show Ready"... In every episode, Fred exemplifies keeping the place neat and tidy. He puts away his jacket and shoes, cleans up sand and water projects, and keeps things looking sparkling clean. Stagers encourage Home Sellers to keep thier personal items out of sight, and to keep the place immaculate.
- Deliver the "Package" Fast and Hospitably ... Mr. McFeely delivers the goods! He delivers the packages from the "Factory," which are the shows for "Picture Picture." Stagers know the Real Estate "time crunch." Many Realtors call a stager and want the job done yesterday, especially on a home that has been sitting on the market for a while. Likewise, Realtors want to get their new listings on the MLS as quick as possible. By keeping a structured schedule, a stager can clearly state delivery expectations, and do it with a hospitable smile!
- Keep it Simple... Fred Rogers deliberately chose to create a relaxing atmosphere that presents as a calm and safe environment for the young viewers. He created that feeling first by changing into something more comfortable, a cable knit sweater and a pair of sneakers. He also kept the show at a slow and easy pace, to not overwhelm the viewers. Stagers create simple and sometimes understated rooms to gently appeal to viewers. Sometimes, "comfort ques" are added by way of accessories and furnishings.
- Know your Audience...Mr. Rogers always knew how valuable his viewers were. He always honored them, and let them know "there's only one person in the whole world like you!" A stager knows the potential of foot traffic, and studies the area's demographics, and just who the potential buyers are.
- Appeal to a Wide Viewing Audience...Just as Mr. Rogers honors the individual, he speaks to the masses, and without offending. Even with an impressive and scholarly religious background, the values that Mr. Rogers puts forth are universal. He wanted every child to feel safe -- every child to be respected, no matter what their religious belief or cultural background. Stagers sometimes have the sensitive task of depersonalizing and removing valued mementos must be packed away, including religious items and pictures. This keeps the home friendly an appealing to all.
- Picture Shows are a Great Tool... When it comes to technology, back in the day, Mr. Rogers was cutting edge. Special films were delivered "Special Delivery" and viewed by Mr. Rogers and all his invited guests with "Picture Picture"... an amazing device that could take a small package and instantly display it in the form of moving pictures. Stagers know that pictures are a great selling tool. Many savvy stagers create real estate shows featuring staged properties, as well as "before and after" shows to sell their services. Most importantly, Stagers set the scene for great pictures to be used on Realtors websites.
- Show and Tell is Exciting and Engaging... Many episodes, Fred would share a special item in a box. Show and Tell time brings exploration and understanding of an item. Stagers "Show and Tell" by editing out all the confusion in an home, and featuring the important stuff.
- Speak to the Emotions "Won't you be my Neighbor?"... An invitation to become part of the neighborhood was the opening song of every episode. By helping children feel good about themselves and how they felt when watching Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood. Fred got them hooked! Parents too. Stagers work to elicit emotions of comfort, future vision, and the "I would LOVE to live here" response from home buyers, within the first 10 seconds they walk through the front door.
- Have fun with creativity... Whether it was play in the sandbox, trips to the music studio, or visits to the Neighborhood of Make Believe, finding joy in new ideas, opportunities and creative endeavors because of the growth, experience and new friends gained was key. Stagers are joyful in their tasks, and although faced by challenges, the experiences, lessons learned, and new friendships made every day inspire continued growth and an inspiration to all.
Thank you Fred, for all you have given. You plant seeds of possibility in many a child's heart. While you are missed, your legacy is not forgotten.
Julianna Hind, Director of the Northwest School of Interior Redesign and Owner of Roosmpinners, is a Professional Stager, Interior Redesigner, and Color Consultant in the Greater Puget Sound area. All Rights Reserved.