I recently sat down with Ann Marie McDonnell, owner of Cayde, an interior design and home staging firm located in Lone Tree, CO. The topic: staging your home to prepare it for the real estate market.
In this short video, we cover:
- What’s the difference between interior design and home staging?
- The #1 mistake many sellers make with home staging (and how to avoid it).
- The surprising thing about the cost of hiring a home stager.
- Why you don’t necessarily need to strip your home of every personal touch to stage it.
- Does staging bring more buyers and higher sale prices?
If you prefer to read, here’s a recap of what we talked about:
What’s the Difference Between Interior Design and Home Staging?
Staged to Perfection by Cayde
An interior designer’s job is to inject the homeowner’s unique personality and character into a home. Having a home that reflects your tastes and preferences makes your home a happier and more comfortable place.
In staging, the designer’s or stager’s job is to deliberately remove the homeowner’s unique personality and character from the home. The goal is not to make it bland in fact, far from it! The goal of staging is to show the spaces to their best advantage and show them in ways that help buyers see how they can live in and use the spaces.
The #1 Mistake Many Sellers Make With Home Staging (and How to Avoid It)
As modern homeowners, almost all of us are comfortable using technology and hitting up our BFF Google when we want to find out about a subject. However, that’s the #1 mistake that Ann Marie sees sellers making when it comes to home staging. As she says, “You’ll get all the answers. But some won’t be correct for your home.” And unless you’re a trained designer, you likely won’t be able to know which answers are right for your home and which aren’t.
I would add that Pinterest is not necessarily your friend when you need ideas for staging your home. So many of the “looks” you’ll find on there would require you to essentially redecorate your home. Rather than going out and buying all new decor, you can save money by working with a professional stager such as Ann Marie. Stagers will help you “edit” what goes into each room for maximum impact at minimum cost.
The Surprising Thing About the Cost of Hiring a Home Stager
You may be surprised to know that it doesn’t cost as much to hire a professional home stager as you probably think. And can I let you in on a secret? When you list your home with the JM Denver Homes team, we include professional staging at no additional cost! Why do we do that? Simply, we want your home to have every advantage and catch the eye of every potential buyer. That’s going to result in the best possible sale.
Why You Don’t Necessarily Need to Strip Your Home of Every Personal Touch to Stage It
Conventional wisdom says that sellers should remove every family photo and every bit of personal decor when staging their home. That’s not necessarily true, says McDonnell. It’s generally a matter of volume; some are okay, and too much is too much. That said, there is some decor especially art that appeals to such a small percentage of people that it really should be removed for staging.
Does Staging Bring More Buyers and Higher Sale Prices?
From my perspective as a Real Estate Agent with more than 15 years of experience in the Denver-area market, there’s no question that staging brings more buyers and results in higher sale prices. It’s not hard to understand why.
Your home has to be seen to be sold. The internet has changed how people do almost everything, especially how they search for a new home. Almost 90% of buyers start their search online. When your home is professionally staged, the online photos look more appealing. Staging creates an emotional appeal that makes the buyer a little more eager. Not only are you catching the eyes of more buyers, but they’re more committed which often results in a higher sale price.
“I wish I’d have staged it first” is something Ann Marie hears often from real estate agents who skip staging and go straight to listing the home. When those homes linger on the market, the agents then turn to her. Almost every time, she says, the first buyer to see the home once it has been staged turns out to be the ultimate buyer of the home.