Home Staging ….Is it worth the Investment?

Real Estate Staging

At a recent open house, one of the viewers made several comments about where the TV would or should be. She wished that the condo had been staged so that she would have an idea where her items should go. I realised that not having furniture in a condo may or may not be for everyone. For those who cannot visualize what the aprtment would like like with furniture, Home staging is a dream come true.

U.S. study tracking over 2,700 properties that revealed unstaged properties were on the market for, on average, 31 days and sold for 1.6 per cent over asking price, while staged properties sold in 14 days for 6.35 per cent above asking price.

Home staging is extremely helpful for prospective buyers and is more likely to result in a sale at a higher dollar value than an unstaged home, according to a US National Association of Realtors (NAR) survey. Home staging is huge business and is  is the act of preparing a private residence for sale in the real estate marketplace. The goal of staging is to make a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers, thereby selling a property more swiftly and for more money. Staging techniques focus on improving a property’s appeal by transforming it into a welcoming, attractive product that anyone might want.

Eighty-one per cent of buyers’ agents responded that staging makes it easier for their clients to visualize living in the home, 49 per cent said that most buyers are affected by home staging and 47 per cent said that some buyers are affected.

Staging a home has always been part of the homeowner’s responsibility, but it was often as simple as keeping the grass cut and picking up dirty clothes. The seller’s agent would recommend actions if the owners were clueless about elements that turn off potential buyers. The late-2000s recession turned real estate into a buyer’s market, wherein sellers look for any advantage to make their property stand out from the rest.

Only 34 per cent of listing agents said that they stage all homes for sale, compared with 44 per cent who said they just advise the seller to declutter and fix any faults.

The survey also found that 46 per cent of buyers’ agents said that staging made buyers more willing to view a home they have seen listed online, and 45 per cent said that their clients will typically spend more if a home is decorated to their tastes. Some 28 per cent of agents even said that staging made their clients overlook faults in the property.

Thirty-two percent of buyers’ agents believe staged homes increases the price buyers are willing to offer by 1-5 per cent. Nineteen per cent said there is no impact on the dollar value, and 16 per cent believe staging increases the dollar value by 6-10 per cent.

However, the survey’s findings among sellers’ agents did not correlate with the positive impact of staging found by buyers’ agents.

Thirteen per cent of listing agents said they only stage homes that are difficult to sell, and 4 per cent stage only high-priced homes.

The survey also found the median price to stage a home is US$675. For most sellers, that is a paltry sum if it ensures getting over asking or full asking price for their homes.