win win situation

Home Stager with Staging for Top Dollar Stager 9

When the Real Estate market plummeted off the cliff in July of 2008 I had three storages full of inventory and a monthly rental bill of $650.00 and no income. My husband said, "No problem ." He would take up the slack.--- but I had made a comittment to him that my company would be self- sufficent. That was not a option in my thinking. So I made some phone calls and offered the two builders I had worked for a deal.

I would stage their 4 bedroom, den, Great room, formal dining room, baths and kitchens for the staging fee alone. They would pay the one time staging fee for my 2 staff, the trucking fee and a destaging fee plus the ongoing weekly cleaning and gardening which I would also do. I would not charge them an inventory fee for as long as the houses took to sell.

In return I could close my storages and not have to pay storage fees. The excess I sold off at 2 show home sell offs from my home. Items had become dated and/or needed repair. I receive weekly cleaning fees. And a huge amount of goodwell.

They were delighted! I made sure that the contracts were specific to the two homes etc. I also put a clause in the contract that stated that the buyer could buy the furniture and/or I could sell the inventory off at a show home sale. I gave the builder a itemized cost break-down of all items.

These builders believed in staging------ but their overhead costs were too high. Since I staged these homes in November and December they both have accepted offers!

Staging works!

P.S. The builder has contracted me to stage all 5 of his homes over 1 million each ---- and he will pay the inventory fee

Comments (5)

Melissa Marro
Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team - Orange Park, FL
Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging

it's great that you were able to come up with a solution that worked for everyone.  Did you create as part of the contract, a clause where you would get paid for your inventory at closing so that you will receive some rental income from it?  If not don't you worry that you are potentially missing out on paying jobs between now and when the homes sell?

Feb 05, 2009 01:42 PM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
Retired New Hampshire Home Stager

What a great story!  You really made the right decision and it has paid off.  Congrats!!  Does this mean you no longer carry inventory?

Feb 05, 2009 01:58 PM
Kathy Passarette
Creative Home Expressions - Mount Sinai, NY
L.I. Staging/Decorating

Marilyn ~ Way to think out of the box!  So glad this worked out for you.

Feb 05, 2009 10:18 PM
Marilynn Currie

Thanks so much for your comments.

re inventory  I fully own all my own inventory  I do not rent anything. It is huge investment. I still have inventory in these homes  and will move and mix and match the inventory to the new show homes. The show homes will be completed between now and June.I will need to buy new bedding , some art and toweling as the colour scheme has changed.

Last year I did more show homes , corporate rentals and staged for living rather that lived in homes. But I will suggest that for the next consult  in a lived in home I will buy the items needed and they will pay for them and keep them re bedding, towels and throws. In today's market I can no longer carry such a large inventory --- also items become dated and/or shop worn from moving so much----

This was one time only ---- and I do not undercut to get the business --- that would be suicide  re integrity ----- as a CSP!

Cheers Marilynn


Feb 06, 2009 03:34 PM
Michele Hess
Simply Staged Inc. - Rockford, IL
Home Stager Rockford - Simply Staged Inc

Good for you Marilynn!  Creative thinking to keep your business going.  Sounds like it paid off.

Feb 06, 2009 08:47 PM