In the current hot market, it's easy to shake your head and think "Homes are selling like crazy! Why do I care about staging?". Well, it's simple. Because we all like money, we love happy sellers, and we want the referralsÂ gushing sellers will send our way by helping them reach their goal of selling their home fast and at a premium price.
I spent many years in the auto industry before I came to real estate and design. Even when the market was hot, we never pulled the just-traded-in-used-car right up to the front line and tossed a for sale sign in the window. Why? Because we knew the best way to market it was to have it re-conditioned first-- clean it up, dress it up, put some smell pretty in it and then pull it out on the front line for a premium price. It was no surprise our used car department trumped our new car department in sales, profits and happy customers.
Selling a home is no different. Price, condition and presentation are the 3 magic ingredients for a successful sale. Price it right, clean it up and get it staged to maximize the opportunity to get top dollar. Seller can't afford it? Sellers can't afford NOT to! Staging returns 176-353% ROI depending on the type of staging or re-design done.
Fun fact: The average cost for a re-design (seller occupied makeover) is about $500. The average GAIN from that investment is just under $10,000. The average cost for vacant home staging is $2,200. The average GAIN from that investment is about $30,000. Sounds like winning the lottery, doesn't it?
A recent seller decided it wasn't worth the few hundred dollars to re-design and stage his home. It sold without staging. The realtor's comment still rings in our ears. "I could have gotten him about $10,000 MORE if he would have had it staged".
Marketing your homes without staging leaves money on the table for you and your seller. Whether the market is slow or hot, staging still brings more money to the closing table. But more than that, it's a great tool in your marketing toolbox to build your business. After all, building your business comes from having happy sellers who will sing your praise and share their success story with friends, neighbors and family. That's what staging brings to the table. And that's money in the bank.
*Stats are from RESA (Real Estate Staging Association) and NAR (National Association of Realtors). Fun Facts are from Showhomes Tampa data, 2010-2012.