staging diva: Are You a Real Estate Agent Missing This Referral Source? - 04/04/14 04:15 AM
When you're 100% dependent on real estate commissions for your livelihood, quality referrals are key. Without new prospects coming into your pipeline, you can't build your real estate business.
Some of the typical ways real estate agents find new prospects include:
Attending networking events. Distributing door to door flyers. Buying leads. Knocking on doors. Hosting open houses on their own, or another agent's, listing. Running expensive newspaper and billboard ads. Websites, blogs and social media. Networking with real estate agents in other markets. The problem with most of these methods is you're marketing to people who may or may not be … (46 comments)

staging diva: Did You Pick the Wrong Real Estate Career? - 07/18/13 10:43 AM
Lots of people jump into becoming real estate agents without thinking through what the day-to-day career really entails. They may not even realize there are related careers that will give them the "real estate buzz" without being an agent.
Some who are studying for their real estate license, or already have one, wonder what to do when they discover they’re actually more interested in home staging than being a REALTOR.
They discover their passion for color and decorating, and then question what benefits they’ll have from keeping their real estate license. I’ll address these issues here.
Real Estate or Home Staging, … (7 comments)

staging diva: Real Estate Marketing - What Does Your Head Shot Say About You? - 03/13/13 08:55 AM
Real estate marketing pretty much comes down to business cards, advertising, networking, social media, websites, blogs, signage and open houses. As much as we'd like to pretend otherwise, how we look counts for a lot. Since many real estate agents include their head shot on business cards, For Sale signs, advertising and more, it's important to think about what your photo says about you.
Your Real Esate Agent Head Shot Is Key to Your Business Image Your head shot communicates a lot about you as a real estate agent and gives your prospective clients a sense of what it might be … (2 comments)

staging diva: 3 Steps to Boost Real Estate Business with Holiday Gifts - 12/08/12 02:08 AM
Are you thinking about gifts for your real estate or home staging business clients and prospects? It’s tricky figuring out the best approach. Get it right and you can actually boost your business for 2013.
Get it wrong and you might inadvertently offend the people you want to impress, or send the wrong message altogether.
Like anything else you do to connect with clients or potential clients, business gifts are part of your arsenal of real estate marketing or home staging marketing. Here are 3 steps to getting it right:
Step 1: Decide on your business objectives for gifting Before you … (1 comments)

staging diva: Home Staging Jobs Go To Home Stagers Who Get Media Attention - 03/23/12 07:27 AM
It seems crazy to me that there are so many home stagers in California, yet a builder in Burbank has come to me to help find him a home stager for a staging job on three vacant condos. Yet this happens all the time. I've posted over 400 home staging jobs at the Home Staging Business Report.
For this particular opportunity, there are 3 vacant condos in the same small building, priced in the $450,000 range. They are already on the market and not selling.
Here's where you can get the full scoop and apply for this home staging job.

staging diva: When You Become a Trusted Advisor, You Have a Client for Life - 01/19/12 09:18 AM
I recently finished reading Seth Godin’s Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?, which is written for people still toiling away inside corporations but it offers some interesting insights that we can use as real estate and home staging professionals too.
Godin argues that every workplace has traditionally had “management” and “labor” but that now there is an important third group, which he calls “linchpins.” Regardless of whether they are low down or high up in the pecking order, these are the people who make things happen. They create order out of chaos, make connections and they lead others. In so doing, they become … (2 comments)

staging diva: Are Home Stagers Born With Decorating Talent? - 09/12/11 01:07 PM
I’ve been addicted to decorating since I was a kid. I remember insisting that my room be painted a deep turquoise, and my rattan headboard white, because I could totally picture how one would stand out against the other and compliment the pale creamy-yellow duvet. At the risk of revealing my age, I’ll admit it was the 1960s. Even now I can see that decorating scheme in my mind’s eye, and it still looks cool.
As a teen, I painted murals on my bedroom wall and also the high school cafeteria. In my first marketing coup and “payment” for my creative … (8 comments)

staging diva: Home Stagers Is Bargain Hunting Putting You Out of Business? - 07/26/11 05:16 AM
When you're a professional home stager, it's important to try and do the best home staging job for your clients. Unfortuntately, too many home stagers get so caught up in trying to save their clients some money that they are slowly putting themselves out of business without realizing it.
Here's an example to show you what I mean.
I've heard many home stagers discuss on Facebook and elsewhere, how they've gone on Craig's list, run around from store to store, or visited a garage/estate sale multiple times, trying to scoop up the best bargain on home staging accessories for their clients. … (15 comments)

staging diva: Wishy-Washy Clients Wasting Your Time? - 07/20/11 05:16 AM
Some people just can’t keep an appointment. When you’re in a service-based business such as real estate or home staging, if you are dealing with The Wishy-Washy Client, you will receive voice mails full of excuses.
One day they might call to tell you they aren’t quite ready to have the house staged or for you to take your listing photos so they want to reschedule. Then when that appointment rolls around, they call saying they double booked and have a meeting with their lawyer, their child’s soccer game or a dentist appointment.
A client like this who schedules and reschedules … (4 comments)

staging diva: Why Real Estate Agents Discourage Home Stagers - 06/27/11 07:14 AM
If you’re looking for the best way to talk yourself out of becoming a home stager, immediately get on the phone and call a dozen real estate agents in your market. After a few “No one will ever pay for it around here” or “It will never work in this market” or “There’s no need for staging, if a house is priced right it will sell” responses you’ll be almost embarrassed with yourself for ever thinking up such a silly idea.
If I listened to everyone who told me home staging wouldn’t work in my city 9 years ago, there would … (31 comments)

staging diva: FSBO Selling Tips for Home Stagers - 05/14/11 09:44 AM
Active Rain member Laurie Jarett wrote a blog post this week for real estate agents about how the FSBO Seller is NOT a Big, Scary Monster! What a great title! It occurred to me that home stagers might be worrying about similar things and not approach them either.
With FSBO properties being so common in the marketplace, you’re probably wondering how to attract some of them to your home staging business. Targeting FSBOs or “For Sale by Owner” properties is a great idea but remember, they’re selling their homes themselves so they don’t have to pay an agent.
This could mean … (5 comments)

staging diva: Are you wasting time and energy right now? - 05/05/11 03:15 AM

As real estate agents, home stagers or any other type of business where you basically work for yourself, it's so key not to waste time and energy because really in the final analysis, that's what we're selling!
I wrote a blog post on Active Rain about not taking rejection personally the other day. A comment from Sally Weatherley inspired my idea here, that we should all put a post it note on our computers or somewhere prominent to ask ourselves whether what we're doing right now is a waste of our time or an unneccessary drain on our energy.
Things … (4 comments)

staging diva: Home Stager Rejection: It's not always personal - 04/30/11 08:30 AM
Even though I've been staging homes since 2002 and I'm well known, not everyone who calls me to discuss their staging project actually hires me. This is a reality of the business and one that you can't take personally. I know it is hard not to take this as a personal rejection, especially when the potential home staging client sounds so interested at first.
Here's the scenario. The potential client calls and says they're interested in hiring a home stager. You've felt like they really connected with you on the phone, they sounded excited about your services and then at the … (8 comments)

staging diva: 5 Warning Signs You Have a Home Staging Hobby Not a Business - 04/09/11 06:51 AM
Here are 5 warning signs that your home staging business is really a home staging hobby:
No one else takes your home staging business seriously, and if you're painfully honest with yourself you might realize that you don't either (this is often a symptom of being too afraid to really "go for it"). You love shopping and buying cute decor pieces on sale. Now you have a collection of home staging accessories sitting in a storage locker costing you money, instead of home staging accessories sitting in your clients' homes earning you rental income. Your phone isn't ringing with new projects … (6 comments)

staging diva: 7 Ways Real Estate Agents Shoot Themselves in the Foot - 02/21/11 01:56 AM
Rita Fong wrote a great blog post How come some agents can't close a deal?, which attracted a ton of comments from real estate agents. Some acknowledged that there are agents who just aren't that good at what they do, others pointed out that some clients really don't know what they want. All true of course.
Since I've worked with a ton of agents (good and bad) in 4 different cities along the way of buying and selling 7 different homes (I lived in all of them), I wanted to weigh in with my perspective as a CLIENT, hoping it will … (10 comments)

staging diva: What are your Wow Moments in the Real Estate Industry? - 01/08/11 10:36 AM
Listening to a talk by author Neil Pasricha yesterday, I started thinking about all the things I love about being a home stager. The moments that make me say “Wow!”
Whether you're a real estate agent or a home stager, I'm sure you've experienced those highs a "WOW Moment" can bring. Since we're just starting a new year and looking for inspiration heading into the spring real estate market, I thought this would be a good time to reflect on the great things that happen and share them with others!
I’ve included 10 of my own “WOW Moments as a Home … (0 comments)

staging diva: Camera buying tips for home stagers and real estate agents - 12/23/10 02:34 AM
As a professional home stager or real estate agent you really need to invest in a good camera for a top notch staging portfolio or listing shots that attract home buyers. Choosing that important piece of equipment can be a daunting task, though, especially if you don’t know much about photography.
When you go shopping for your camera, don’t go to a department store. Go to a proper camera store where that’s all they sell and the people you deal with are experts in digital cameras, not washing machines and microwave ovens.
Explain to the sales person that you’re a home … (1 comments)

staging diva: Would having 4 more hands help? - 12/15/10 01:39 PM
We live in a culture that celebrates multi-tasking as if it’s really possible to do 3 things at once, and therefore magically squeeze an extra 24 hours into our working day. Many studies have shown that this isn’t possible though.
The human brain can’t simultaneously engage in more than one activity that requires real thinking and processing.
If you’ve ever tried to read an email while talking on the phone, you know that you are either doing one or the other at any given moment. And in all likelihood, the client you were speaking with was very aware that you weren’t … (2 comments)

staging diva: Home staging consultation reports are a waste of time - 08/02/10 12:19 PM
If you’re sitting down with a stack of photos after a home staging consultation, struggling over the report you’re preparing for the homeowners you are really wasting your time. Unless…
You just love doing paperwork You enjoy knowing you have a lengthy report to complete before moving on to the next client You’re getting paid extra to write it In my opinion, this practice is a pure waste of time…valuable time you should be using marketing your business and getting more paying clients!
Preparing staging consultation reports is one of the many contributing factors to new home stagers going out of … (19 comments)

staging diva: Should Real Estate Agents Pay for Home Staging? - 06/02/10 09:07 AM
While it's true that home staging will help a real estate listing stand out from all the other homes for sale, and while home staging will also increase the probability that the house will sell more quickly and for more money-- all of which are of considerable benefit to the real estate agent trying to earn an income from commissions-- I don't believe that agents should pay for staging.
I'm sure there are plenty of home stagers and home sellers who will disagree with me, but here's my reasoning:
If the home seller is prepared to invest in the advice of … (5 comments)

Debra Gould, The Staging Diva (Staging Diva / Six Elements Inc.) Rainmaker large

Debra Gould

The Staging Diva

Toronto, ON

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Staging Diva / Six Elements Inc.

Office: (416) 691-6615

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Articles of interest to home stagers and real estate agents to improve understanding of the business of home staging (real estate staging, house fluffing).
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