This Naperville home is too much work. I need move-in ready!

Home Stager with Chicagoland Home Staging LLC

"This Naperville home is too much work. I need move-in ready!" Is this really what you want buyers thinking about your home? "But wait! My home is move-in ready. It's not dated." Really? Is that what you think? 

I was recently featured here on AR for my post Fresh linens can take 30 years off a home. and the post before it, Could what's in your home affect the value of it? has received over 1500 clicks in the last 2 weeks. Photos tend to express what is often hard for home sellers to understand. 


Let's take a recent staging job, this is actually the same home as the linen swap. The sellers had taken great care of the home, but their taste was a little less than trendy. While there is no need to keep up with the Joneses in your home life, when selling you have to appeal to what buyers expect to see. After all, they will only buy the home that they think will work for their needs, not  yours. 

What's worse is that old, worn, or dated furniture, art, draperies, and accessories may be leaving potential buyers believe that it's the home, not the stuff that's past it's prime. 

naperville home staging

This room has great features including a bay window with beautiful wood trim, hardwood floors, and it's fairly spacious. Unfortunately what it probably says to buyers is that it's too small (where's the seating on the right side of the table?) and that it's dated. The draperies, 1980s furniture, and wrong sized rug are all working against this breakfast room. 

after home staging in naperville

After staging, the same draperies and lighting work for the room instead of against it. By removing the rug that was chopping up the space, the hardwood floors are allowed to shine (literally). An updated dinette with glass table top makes the room feel much larger, providing ample seating for a family. 

before home staging in naperville il

In this family room, the layout is awkward. While the fireplace is nice and large is also feels crowded. The furniture and rug are not offering favors to making the home feel modern and move-in ready. When you consider the fact that most families gather around the TV, shoving the recliner right in front of does not make it feel workable for today's buyers. 

naperville after home staging

Sure, we took away the TV but at least we haven't told the buyer what doesn't work. Instead, after staging, there  is ample room and different potential layouts are abundant. The fireplace is no longer crowded. The windows are showcased by removing the curtains that were hiding them, allowing tons of light to pour in. 

The investment of Naperville home staging

Professional home staging and photography is a critical part of every home's sale, as was recently written about by Linda Barnett, an Indianapolis home stager. The difference in this home's marketability is night and day. The list price and the likely buyer are very different from the before photo to the after photo. The small investment in home staging and professional photography will create a tremendous return on investment for Chicagoland area sellers. 

Posted by


Margaret Gehr is the principle owner of Chicagoland Home Staging, servicing the greater Chicago area for home staging, redesign, and design projects. We work in both occupied and vacant homes. 


Ronald DiLalla
Century 21 Discovery DRE 01813824 - Anaheim, CA
No. Orange Cty Real Estate

That's why we need professional stagers.  WoW, what a difference..Thanks for sharing

Feb 23, 2014 03:12 AM
Margaret Gehr
Chicagoland Home Staging LLC - Naperville, IL

thanks for the nice comment Ronald

Feb 23, 2014 12:39 PM
Wayne Zuhl
Remax First Realty II - Cranford, NJ
The Last Name You'll Ever Need in Real Estate


great post. It's amazing what a few minor changes can do.

Feb 23, 2014 02:14 PM
Paula Pitts
Keller Williams Realty Gulf Coast - Pensacola, FL


How do stores manage to sell so much ugly furniture?

Feb 24, 2014 12:51 PM