Home Staging 101

Stacie Wells

Many people hear the word ‘staging’ and think it is synonymous with decorating, but having well-placed and suitable interior decor is only the tip of the iceberg. Think of it this way:

When you walk into a department store, what’s usually the first thing that catches your eye? It’s the mannequin or the window display, right? These displays are strategically adorned with the best selections the boutique has to offer in an attempt to draw you in. There’s nothing that most of us would add to these displays. All the design work has already been done for us.

When your home is on the market, I frequently tell people it needs to be like the mannequin in the department store window. You want every detail to catch the buyer’s eye. You want it to evoke a certain mood. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that psychology is a big part of staging. The goal is to make the buyer feel like they’re home. Cleaner, bigger, and brighter are important – less is definitely more – but many times it’s also about finding the right shade of paint for the lighting in your house or giving the buyer ideas for best furniture arrangement if you’ve got a room with an irregular size or shape. You want to overcome any potential objections and make it as easy as possible for someone to fall in love with the thought of living there.

So just how important is staging? Very important if you’re in a competitive market. For example, as I’m writing this there are 858 homes for sale in a Columbia County, Georgia. 351 of those are new construction. As long as Columbia County is rapidly growing, your competition isn’t necessarily the neighbor down the street. Your home selling competition is the new construction happening everywhere around you. If you are looking for a way to make your home stand out against the ever-popular new construction communities, proper staging is critical.

Don’t take my word on the importance of staging. According to the 2017 Profile of Home Staging published by the National Association of Realtors (link), “about one-third of buyers’ agents said that staging a home increased the dollar value offered between one and five percent compared to other similar homes on the market that are not staged.” Twenty-nine percent of sellers’ agents agreed with that number. Also, “thirty-nine percents of sellers’ agents stated that staging a home greatly decreases the amount of time the home is on the market.”

What can you expect to experience during the staging process? Depending on your needs and budget, your stager may suggest

  • updated lighting
  • furniture rental if your home will be vacant or sparsely furnished
  • new flooring
  • help with the placement of furniture and decorating pieces (yours or theirs)
  • a specific paint color to tie it all together
  • renting a storage unit if necessary to store any extra belongings that need to be kept out of the way during the selling period
  • finding arrangements for your pets to be out of the house during showings

If you are thinking of selling your home, please let me know what questions you have about staging and how best to prepare. I’m always happy to help! You can reach me at 706-945-7649 or stacie@staciewells.com.







Photo by Tim Wright on Unsplash