Home Selling in 07871>Question Details

Shoredreamer, Home Buyer in ,

Home staging questions

Asked by Shoredreamer, , Tue Jul 16, 2013

Is it better to try to sell a home almost entirely empty or with lots of furniture in every room. I realize I have a fully furnished 4 br home & plan to downsize to something smaller like perhaps a 2br condo or something of that nature. In fact I do have an overly furnished home so i guess I'm asking which is best empty rooms or furnished rooms. The house itself is entirely dated & I have no plans to update it anymore nor to move all the furniture as I plan to downsize into a small much less maintenance involved place of living. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated, thank you very much!!

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Clutter is a killer for generating purchase offers...and if you do get them, expect the offer to be very low. Clutter shows you don't care in the eyes of the buyer, so they don't care how their low their offer looks. If you are in a town where any buyer will just gut and renovate regardless of what you, I would keep things to a bear minimum so they can see the space and potential, because that is all that will matter. In certain areas, staging is a waste of time and money. Tom Hinz http://www.shortsaletosell.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 4, 2015
Be aware that 90% of buyers need furniture to visualize a room's potential.

Always better to sell with some furniture. Too much furniture, can block flow of traffic. (for example if you have 8 dining room chairs, store two to four of them for less chairs and more space to walk around the room).

Houses tend to sell faster and at a better price if decluttered, sparkling clean and minimal furniture (this is assuming house priced correctly).

If you just can't leave any furniture, be sure that house is scrupulous clean (floors, window sills, counters, drawers and closet shelves). Add items that make rooms smell fresh like eucalyptus leaves. Remove all drapes - leave only blinds, open windows for lots of light.

For more tips check out http://www.PalmBeachesHomeStaging.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 31, 2015
It's usually best to leave the home somewhere in between. You'll want to make sure the potential buyers can see where their furniture will fit without giving negative impressions. Maybe a smaller bedroom that has a double bed looks spacious because you bought the furniture to fit the room - but it may very well be deemed smaller than usual when it's empty, due to the buyers comparing to other larger bedrooms in the house.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 31, 2015
Give your home a deep cleaning, de-clutter and minimize furnishings. View readying your home as the start of your master plan to downsize and start unloading. That is what I am doing and I can honestly say I do not regret a single thing I've let go of.

Good luck and best,
Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service, Unsurpassed Results
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 12, 2013
The answer really depends on the character of your home, whether the furniture complements the character , whether there is too much or too little furnishings, and how what is there is currently arranged.

The typical home is over-crowded with furniture, often poorly placed. Most common is when natural flows for walking from room to room are impeded, or in contrast everything is pushed to the four walls like the place is ready for ballroom dancing or a game of Twister.

Staging can be accomplished with a seller's existing furniture - by editting and using what is in other rooms. Ideally, you want a home to show as age and gender neutral as possible WITH ALL PERSONAL PHOTOS removed and COLLECTIBLES and KIDS TOYS grouped in ONE location or simply packed away; All evidence of pets that would be detected by sight or smell should also be eliminated.

Another common issue is that many seller's have decorated crossing the thin line that seperates THEME from Feeling. A common Bi-Level filled with signs that say Welcome to Our Cabin/Lake House should be avoided - as it is neither. When decorating, create a natural feeling and avoid
a Disneyesque theme.

For more information please visit http://www.NJLakehouse.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 12, 2013
Dear Shoredreamer,

The agents that have recommended hiring a professional stager for, at minimum, a consultation have given you very sound advice. Full disclosure - I'm a stager...but here is some compelling information that you may find useful.

Staged homes sell, on average, 78% faster than vacant homes. (Real Estate Staging Statistics Report By RESA®. Released February 2010.)

Because only about 10% of the population can visualize beyond what they see in front of them, having the home at least partially furnished helps potential buyers envision living in the space. Empty rooms tend to appear smaller than they are - having furniture in them helps buyers understand scale and purpose. But, overly furnished rooms make it difficult to see the architectural features of the home. Less is more - you want to sell the space, not the stuff!

Furthermore, investing 1-3% of the asking price can generate 8-10% return. (National Association of Realtors (NAR). A fun tool for ROI (Return on Investment) can be found at http://www.homegain.com/sellertools - take the quiz to see what simple and inexpensive changes to your property can mean to the bottom line.

A professional stager can recommend which of your existing furnishings will be best used to highlight the property to its fullest advantage. If your furniture is very worn or dated, renting furniture is always an option. Some stagers carry their own inventory, and some stagers work with rental companies - iin either case, the stager will work to find the most cost effective means to showcase your house to appeal to the widest array of buyers appropriate to the demographic for your property.

Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, staging your home will help to create better photos for online listing and marketing purposes. Over 90% of buyers look online first, before choosing to view a property in person - so having a great online presentation is essential. You want your property to stand out from the competition, and be on the buyer's "must see" list.

You can find a qualified stager by using the directory at http://www.realestatestagingassociation.com, asking for a referral from your realtor, or by doing an online search for your area.

Good luck on a quick sale!
Lisa Vasey
Staged Today, SOLD Tomorrow!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 18, 2013

Neither empty nor overly furnished is the way to go. Staging is important as it will show the best features of the house without distracting from them. What most people don't realize is that empty rooms look smaller. You need to use enough furniture to show prospective buyers how to use the room.

The best advice I can give you is to hire a professional stager, who can be recommended by your real estate agent or who i would be happy to recommend to you. She can work with you to help stage your home with furnishings you already have and will recommend changes based on your own budget. I have seen magic done with the help of a professional for very little cost.

Judy Golland
Broker Associate
Realty Executives
Sparta, NJ
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Thank you so much everyone for all of your great answers. I guess I will get rid of all furniture I won't be moving which will mean an almost empty home minus my bedroom furniture & family room furniture. I plan to get rid of the other 3 bedrooms of furniture entirely and formal living & dining room furniture is going, all quite outdated anyway. I will take your great suggestions and advice and thank you so much for them. The only thing I don't want to do is have to buy new furniture just to stage the house. It is already outdated like the window treatments & such are very 90s motif but they still match the decor of the home and again I don't want to have to pay for custom new treatments just to make it more up to date. There is just too much to do to update especially kitchen & bathrooms which I know are what sell a home I just don't have more money to really invest in it anymore w/my family now all gone. Thank you again so much because the realtor I spoke to said either way was fine but I have a traditional center hall colonial & I thought walking into empty formal living room on one side an empty formal dining room on the other night be too much of emptiness. When you walk further in you get to the kitchen and family room where that will remain furnished as that is basically the only rooms we really even used. So should I clear the mantel entirely too of all of our family pictures. One whole wall in the family room is bookshelves so it also has alot of pictures scattered about not just books. Guess I should get rid of all of that stuff too? Thank you again SO MUCH!! I now have another awful problem today because as I was carrying the stain for my deck I accidentally dropped it & 2 gallons are now all over the garage floor :( must I now pain the floor to remove the spill stain. It's such a mess I feel so awful about the whole thing. I was just trying to move the stain out to the deck for it to be painted UGH!!!!! Thanks again SO SO much you are all so helpful!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Minimally staged is usually the best way to go--enough to give people a sense of each room without any clutter whatsoever. If the furniture makes the home appear even more dated then remove all of it and show it empty.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Hello Shoredreamer,

Staging your home with furnishings is better than trying to sell an empty house. If your own furnishings are in good condition and you can arrange the furniture so it fits the room then give it a shot on your own. I have never heard anyone complain that the staging professional they hired made it harder to sell their home.
Based on the information you presented, I'd suggest taking whatever furniture you intend to keep and selling the rest or just have a "free" garage sale. Then hire a staging professional to furnish and decorate the house. A good real estate agent will be able to provide you with a few options for choosing a staging professional.

Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Empty. By far. Cluttered rooms tell the buyer that they can expect to live in a chaotic and unmanageable home. Old furniture is a huge horrible turnoff and an impediment to selling. Get rid of it. A certain segment of the population loves old junk. You see them hysterically trying to find a parking spot near garage sales. Use them. Put the furniture on cragislist or freecycle.org and watch it disappear.

Get rid of everything. Paint the rooms. Clean every surface and every window until it sparkles and shines. Re-carpet if necessary.

Empty. Immaculate. Repainted. Sold.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Hi there,

I am a real estate agent that is an interior designer by trade.

I feel to Much furniture makes the space smaller. All empty makes the rooms feel impersonal.

My suggestion is to go thru your things and pick the things you would get rid of if you were downsizing. Put them in a garage or sell them. From there just declutter make the home look like a home but without lots of personal items. So people can walk in see how a room can be laid out and they can visualize there things in the room and see themselves in there bc all personal items are not there and they see their own things in there

Make sense?

Melissa Silva
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013

Any "staging" recommendation based on the information provided would be pure guess work. Stagers offer a variety of services including a consultation service. With this option, a stager will come into your home, spend a couple of hours with you, and make recommendations of what you can do to enhance your home for selling.

Spending a couple hundred dollars for this service could help you realize thousands on the other end of your transaction and help your home sell faster. It could be your best spent money in a long time!

Good luck,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
Do you want more money or less money for your home?
If you want more money for your home get rid of your furniture and personal belongings now not after you sell it.
Salvation army will take furniture for free.
You can also sell it on Craigslist or in an estate sale.

If you are moving to smaller place you can not take all that furniture with you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
It's probably best to fall somewhere in between. If the only choices are lots of furniture vs. almost entirely empty, I'd go with the latter. On another note, it will always benefit you if the property is exceptionally clean. People really do notice.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 17, 2013
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