Home staging is relatively new to the East Coast, having first gained popularity on the West Coast. Due to this, people here are still trying to understand the concept of staging. Being professional home stagers since 2011, we have heard a lot of misconceptions about home staging. Below are the most common misconceptions explained.
Misconception #1: “Staging is too expensive.”
The truth is, it will cost you more in the end if you don’t stage your home for sale. On average, the homes we stage sell for 7% more than unstaged homes. If your home is worth $500,000, that could mean an additional $35,000 in your pocket! For more information, visit our Statistics page.
Misconception #2: “Only some homes need to be staged.”
All homes benefit from some level of home staging. No one lives in a staged home, but a staged home sells. Even if you have excellent design talent or have hired a designer for your home in the past, it is important to hire a home staging professional when listing your home for sale. Staging is specifically targeted to the buyer, which may be different than how you live in the home.
Misconception #3: “Only very high end homes need to be staged.”
Again, all homes benefit from home staging. Whether it is a small one bedroom townhouse or multi-million dollar luxury home, staging sets the scene for buyers to imagine themselves living the life they desire.
Misconception #4: “Only vacant homes need to be staged.”
Although it is crucial to stage a vacant home, occupied homes benefit just as much from home staging. Many people do not live with the amount of decor and artwork that is typical of a properly staged home. Staging supplies the updated decor and artwork needed so buyers will desire your home.
Misconception #5: “If I stage my home and it doesn’t sell right away then I wasted my money.”
Even if you stage your home and it takes a few months to sell, and may have to undergo a price reduction, it would have been much worse if you hadn’t staged. Many times we stage homes simply because the owner knows it will be a difficult sell due to poor neighborhood, lack of backyard, etc. Although these properties do take a bit longer to sell, the seller and real estate agents in these cases have told us the main reason the property sold was because it was staged.
Misconception #6: “It is a seller’s market so I don’t need to stage.”
It is true that in a seller’s market, when the housing inventory is low and the demand is high, properties sell quickly. However, if you stage your home, you can list it for more money than if it were listed unstaged. You will also gain more interest from buyers, possibly creating a bidding war.
Misconception #7: “It is a buyer’s market so I shouldn’t bother staging.”
When there are more homes on the market than there are buyers, housing prices drop and properties take longer to sell. However, in every market there will always be people looking to buy a home. When you stage your home in a buyer’s market, your property will outshine other properties and be viewed as more desirable. This means you will sell quicker and for more money than if you hadn’t staged.
Misconception #8: “A hobbyist home stager is as good as a professional home stager.”
A professional home stager has been trained in both staging and interior decorating. They also have the experience and knowledge of what buyers desire. You can relax knowing you have hired an experienced staging company instead of chancing it with a hobbyist home stager.
Misconception #9: “I can stage my home myself.”
You need to be objective in order to stage your home. Even home stagers need to call in other stagers to evaluate their personal properties they are selling for this very reason.
Misconception #10: “Home staging is unethical because it hides problems people would otherwise see.”
While it is true that staging will direct the eye to the positives of the home and away from any negatives, the goal is to show buyers the full potential of the home. Small imperfections are inevitable and come along with any property. Larger, more costly expenses should come up upon inspection or be disclosed by the seller’s agent. A professional home stager will advise the seller to fix problems such as stained carpets or hard wood floors, not mask it with an area rug.