Other Stagers under bidding in Portland, Oregon area

Home Stager with Makeover Interiors of Oregon

Have any of you experienced going to a property and assessing the Staging parameters? After doing the initial consultation another Stager comes in and under bids us. This recently happened to us with two model lofts. What is your take on how to be competitive and also supportive to other Stagers?  

Do you charge for a consultation with the Home owner or Real Estate agent? I normally do a consultation as a complimentary contact. 

Comments (4)

Don Schneider
Makeover Interiors of Oregon - Willamette, OR
Seems the Portland area has certainly progressed with Stagers this year. I have had this happen on two occasions that come to mind. After spending our time in making appointments, viewing, measuring, gaining a pallet idea, contacting our rental firm, checking availabity, you know all the drill...it turned out to be a communication break-down between the agents marketing partner. Sometimes more than one person is involved behind the scene. Good luck in all you do!
Jul 16, 2007 11:14 AM
Betty Haney
Haney Consulting - Calgary, AB
Pam, I don't know about Portland, but in Calgary we sometimes compete with other stagers.  Often times we lose out because we don't want to sell ourselves or our staging short.  We charge for consultations in lived in homes - $200.00 for two to three hours work which include a written report.  For vacants - which we do a lot of - the "look see" and the quote are free.  Sometimes we win - sometimes we don't.  We are getting a lot faster at putting our bids together - so even if we don't get the job, we learn something.  Betty
Jul 16, 2007 03:02 PM
Kathy Alexander
GreatStages Home Staging and Redesign - Vancouver, WA
Home Stager Camas WA, Home Staging Southwest WA

Pam, I am not sure just what you are trying to say. Are you accusing someone of actually underbidding you once they knew what your bid was? Or are you just surmising that you are losing jobs since your bids are too high?

I have no idea if I have lost jobs due to underbidding. I just go out and put together the best package that I can for my company. I never do free consultations, either. If it is a vacant that I am bidding on, I will go out for a free quick look in order to prepare my bid. There is no staging information given out, just a quick look. Anything else and they have to pay for a consult.

Your post makes me kind of sad. It puts a poor light on Portland the way it is titled, IMO.

Jul 16, 2007 04:00 PM
Julianna Hind
eXp Realty - Tacoma, WA
REALTOR, 206-679-4768, Tacoma Federal Way, Auburn, Kent, WA

Interesting, Pam. I hear your frustration, but keep focused on the big picture.

Kathy Alexander and I spoke on the phone briefly today (she thoughtfully sent a referral my way and I called to thank her) and we both talked about how we state our fees firmly and choose not to engage in bidding wars. Sometimes it is quite evident when people call and they want just a number amount because they are going for the "best price" well, I have to say, those people are not my choice of customer, not because I am trying to thicken my wallet, it is just that I know I am priced competitevely, and I know my clients get expert service when they choose me, that is why we have return clients and a full schedule. I want customers who want my brand of service.

You have to ask yourself, if stagers are underbidding that much, are they going to be able to stay in business? It takes a lot to stage, the initial bid, planning, selection, hauling, instalation, removal, and restoring is a HUGE undertaking, not to mention anything bought for the job... so really can a stager stay in the game for the long run by underbidding and not paying the bills?

Jul 16, 2007 04:24 PM