VACANT LIVING ROOM OF HOME STAGED AND SOLD IN 2014
In 2006, when I staged my first house, few people in Abilene knew what home staging was. At Coldwell Banker they had a booklet talking about home enhancement which was the basic clean and declutter mantra on how to prepare a home for sale. In 2007, I went to Dallas for three days and took the Barb Schwarz Accredited Staging Professional training. In this amazing training, I experienced hands on staging training transforming an occupied home into a "staged" home, to be placed on the market to sell. Since the training, I now have an online portfolio of homes that I have staged in Abilene and Midland, Texas.
Now, when I mention home staging to someone, many say, "Oh, I know about home staging, I watch HGTV (the home and garden television channel) all the time. I love HGTV too and watch it all the time.. However, watching HGTV does not make you a home staging expert anymore than watching the Food network makes you a renowned chef.
Don't get me wrong, without HGTV, we would not have all these great examples of how good staged rooms can look. I find it fascinating that on the shows about flipping houses, that the investor often says, we are counting on the stager to make it look good enough to get our price. Then when they run the budget by, the staging fee is only $3,000 for this half million dollar house. Well, that's TV for you!
Many of the shows that don't even expressly say they are staging the home, what you see is that staging is there. Good staging makes the home look wonderful. Good staging is like love, it is not showy or proud, but makes you feel wonderful! Good staging creates a space that makes you go WOW, not scream look at that fantastic piece of art.
Good staging does not scream look at this room. Good staging screams look at this house!
This month's (July/August) Realtor magazine on the front cover has an article with the lead in of "STAGE WITH PANACHE" I am relieved that it doesn't just regurgitate the the clean and declutter mantra, as necessary as being clean and decluttered is; however reading this article won't make you an expert homestager either.
Next week, I am going to Spring Texas to get refresher home staging training. Although I have the accredited staging professional training credential and have staged many sold homes, each time I go to another training, I learn something new.
Even though home staging is now trendy, remember to hire a Realtor or stager with experience in home staging.
Sure, you can stage it yourself, but why go it alone on such a big asset as your home? Staging like real estate sales are more successfully completed by those with the training and the experience. This months Journal of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M reports that only five percent of buyers purchased a home directly from an owner in 2013. At my house just this week, one experienced person is doing my dry wall repair, another the exterior painting of the house, and a third repairing the air conditioning. Find a Realtor with staging experience or an accredited staging professional. When I get my hair cut, I go to an experienced hair dresser. I tried to cut my hair once and it wasn't pretty! Likewise to get beautiful results, go with experience.
Hire a professional home stager. It is now trendy!
This is one of my favorite staged bedrooms. Note that red always combats boring beige.