About six months ago, I staged two vacant homes that had been sitting for months with little interest. When I agreed to take these jobs, it was rush rush,, gotta have it done by Friday... "We have scheduled an open house !" sorta deal.
Both of these homes were built in the 70's and really needed updating. But the homeowners and the Realtors thought that if the homes were staged, it would downplay the negatives.
So, I did my "magic" as best I could, and then I waited to hear the follow up comments from the Realtors after the first open house.. The report was that while the staging was admired, it was not enough to fool anyone as to the REALITY that these homes were going to require some upgrades.
I then proceeded to make a list of tasks for each of the houses that detailed what was needed to lessen the fears of the prospecive buyers. None of these fix-ups was very intrusive or costly. Things like replacing light fixtures, painting some rooms, updating cabinetry hardware, etc.,
Bottom line, the homeowners declined to undertake to make ANY of these changes and after several months, my staging came out, and the homes are still for sale.
I have a feeling that there are lots of stories like this, and I've been asking myself if , as stagers, do we do our profession more harm than good when/if we take these kinds of jobs ?..Was my approach re the upgrades wrong? It's a very touchy issue to tell a homeowner that his pride and joy is not percieved that way by the buying public! And how do we get the homeowners to realize that with so much property on the market, they MUST accept that it is indeed a competition.!?