Let there be LIGHT...updating is SO IMPORTANT!

By
Home Stager with Certified Staging Professional

Most home sellers and Realtors know that lighting is crucial when showing a house.  Lighting warms rooms and creates ambiance.  However, since having the lights on is so important they become points of focus and therefore can also be a negative distraction if they are old, outdated or in need of repair. 

Updating the lighting fixtures in a marketed home is a relative small financial investment that can reap big rewards.

The big box DIY stores have updated fixtures that can measurably improve the WOW factor in any house.  It is worth the money and the effort of installation to update light fixtures.  Fixtures dating pre-80's and even 90's, give a negative impression. 

I am often shocked by new homes that have contractor-grade, dated lighting fixtures.  That message says, "I'm a low dollar house" and the results could mean a sales price that's lower than what is desired. 

These are examples of some of the light fixtures that need replacing:

lighting Dream Interior Redesign and Home Staging Coarsegold Californialighting Dream Interior Redesign and Home Staging Coarsegold Calif

lighting Dream Interior Redesign and Home Staging Coarsegold California  lighting Dream Interior Redesign and Home Staging Coarsegold California

Sellers should also must keep the following in mind when preparing a home for sale, in regard to lighting.  1) Fixtures needs to shine, (no rust, no tarnish, no dust and no cobwebs, 2) All light bulbs must be working and need to be dust free, 3)Consider clear bulbs in fixtures where there is down light, 4) Add up-lights in dark corners and below silk plants for drama.  5) Add a timer to important fixtures if you will not be home to turn on the lights OR ask the Realtors to turn on the lights BEFORE the potential buyers come into the house.  (2 minutes of preparation can make a lasting impression)

Dream Interior Redesign & Staging by Ginger Foust helps clients realize their dream of selling their home. To visit my website click here.  For examples of lighting to use as replacements or photos of outdated lighting please contact me directly 559-877-2442. 

Comments (8)

Patricia Ebrahimi
SHOW SMART! HOME STAGING & Color Consultant - Rockville, MD
Home Staging the Washington DC Area from Rockville MD
You, Candice Olsen and me.  Lighting is critical to good design.  Your points are very well made.  Thank you for bringing this to the forefront.  I recently did a $1M+ vacant that had the kind of old dated light fixtures you mention, and I insisted the owner replace them.  What a difference it made!  
Jun 23, 2007 05:34 AM
Ginger Foust
Certified Staging Professional - Oakhurst, CA
Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging

Patricia,

Thanks for your comments.  Candice is certainly a STAR when it comes to lighting.  However sometimes her recessed ceiling fixtures remind me of swiss cheese when she puts in so many.  I also know that her clients spend BIG bucks on her fixtures and that just isn't necessary for staging. 

I just have to include one photo of a home where I did a staging consult.  This poor couple will never sell this house, for many reasons, and one BIG one is this chandelier that screams at you as you first enter the house.  AND I know there are many other issues as you look at this photo but the husband really doesn't want to move, and the wife LOVES her decorating style so changes will not happen.  All that we can do is let them know what should be done and beyond that wish them LUCK.

                             OUCH!!!

crystal chandelier

Jun 23, 2007 06:36 AM
Terry Haugen STAGE it RIGHT! 321-956-2495
Stage it Right! - Melbourne, FL

You are so right Ginger.  In 96 I bought a new construction Marondahome, in 04 I bought another new construction Maronda, and in 06 I bought another new construction Maronda.  They were still installing the same light fixtures 10 years later.  Go figure!

Terry Haugen - STAGE it RIGHT!

Jun 23, 2007 12:31 PM
Ginger Foust
Certified Staging Professional - Oakhurst, CA
Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging

Terry,

Thanks for your comment.  Do we live near each other?  Don't think so, but several of our local contractors, that build many cookie cutter homes, must have warehouses filled to the brim with 1970's lighting fixtures. The "hollywood" strip lights in the bathrooms and the ball fixtures over the kitchen sink.  Yuck 

One in particular still uses the center of the room square "bug" lights.  Shoot I had those in my bedroom in the 50's.  They're absolutely awful!! What are they thinking?

 

 

Jun 23, 2007 01:55 PM
Terry Haugen STAGE it RIGHT! 321-956-2495
Stage it Right! - Melbourne, FL

Oh yeah Ginger, the ball fixtures are what Maronda uses, all over the house.  Mine were taken down right after we moved in and are now ornaments/critter habitat in my flower beds!

Terry Haugen - STAGE it RIGHT!

Jun 24, 2007 02:34 PM
Becca Briggs
Rochester, NY
I was wondering who do you have replace the light fixtures in your houses.  Getting an electrician in for a light fixture is pricey.  Are you doing it yourselves?
Jun 24, 2007 03:47 PM
Ginger Foust
Certified Staging Professional - Oakhurst, CA
Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging

Good question Becky.  I have never had a client that didn't know how to replace simple fixtures, but I can do it and I always offer.  Will probably help a redesign client with new light fixtures this week. 

If the homeowner has a "handyman" that person could probably change fixtures.  I don't really see the need for a licensed electrician.  You shouldn't need to change wiring, just disconnect and reconnect. 

All you need is common sense (turn off the power), a lightweight power drill,  a good sturdy, tall ladder and a go-fer to pick up the tiny screws or nuts that you drop and don't want to go up and down the ladder to retrieve.  Serviously, a second person is a good idea for just handling the fixtures. 

Often the guys that work in the electrical dept. at Home Depot and Lowes moonlight small jobs and it's worth an inquiry. 

Electricians might disagree with me so let's see if anyone else comments. 

Jun 24, 2007 04:38 PM
Cheryl-Anne Priest
Inviting Spaces - Home Staging Calgary - Calgary, AB
Inviting Spaces - Staging Calgary
Wow that is some chandelier and the flowers................ OUCH is right!
Jun 27, 2007 04:24 PM