Five Reasons to Stage Your Home Before You List It

As a professional home stager, I frequently receive calls from agents and homeowners who are frustrated because their listing has not sold. They believe that since the listing isn't getting showings or offers, it is now time to bring in a Stager. This is typical because they have made the common error of thinking of the value staging expertise is only necessary when a home hasn't sold. In other words, the attitude is, "Let's try to sell it first and if that doesn't happen, then we will seek the services of a Stager who can help us."


Below I offer five reasons why using professional home staging services before listing is wiser and will impact a sale more positively than waiting until the listing has been on the market a while with few showings, no offers, or poor feedback.


1.     You have a greater chance to sell a home in the first 30 days. Make it count!

The first 30-days on the market are critical. Agents are looking at new listings daily and if a buyer has been waiting for a home like yours to come on the market, their agent is eagerly stalking the new listing "hot sheet" to those present prospective properties to them. You will have the greatest number of showings as a new listing. However, after a home has been on the market for several weeks, the listing begins to stale and the longer it sits on the market, the less interested buyers become and fewer showings occur. The mentality is that if no contract is made in a short period of time, the home is flawed, overpriced, or has other issues that are keeping it from selling.


2.      Price reductions can be avoided.

A price adjustment may be suggested by your agent after a home hasn't had offers for 30-60 days. Staging prepares a home for its best presentation on the market. Unless a home is grossly overpriced, staging generally allows the home to reflect its competitive list price by enhancing the features and details of a home and detracting from any negative issues. If a Stager is brought in following a price reduction, you've already lost the opportunity you would have had to sell at the beginning price point.


3.    Online photography is critical to getting buyers in the door.

With the modern technological age, buyers are shopping online first. Pinterest®, Instagram®, and other social media sites have augmented the value of photography to inspire us toward purchasing products and services. Therefore, the photos posted of your home online will likely be seen by hundreds if not thousands of prospective buyers. The photography of your home is essential to be inspired that this could be the home they want to purchase so that they will want to view your property in person. When you take chances on posting photos of home that has not had the benefit of a Stager's input, you may have prospective buyers crossing your home off their list simply because the photos didn't wow them.


4.      Professional Stagers know more than you do about your home's marketability.

Professional stagers are trained, experienced, and are experts in real estate readiness and marketability. Their advice can bring to your attention many factors which could impact the sale of your home. Moreover, their mission is to help you overcome issues that you may be overlooking or undervaluing because you have a personal, emotional connection to the home. Just as you want your real estate agent to be properly trained, experienced and knowledgeable about the real estate transaction, a certified home staging professional provides very specific expertise that is objective and valuable in how the home will present to prospective buyers.


5.    Your best competition has likely used a professional home stager.

Because staging has been proven to increase the opportunity for a quicker sale at a higher price, many successful real estate professionals have made staging a critical piece of their listing process. The most favorable properties on the market are typically homes where a professional Stager has been a part of the listing process. To stand tall against your home's competition, you too must understand that Staging is no longer an option when listing a home.


If you are considering listing your home, the value of Staging before the home goes on the market cannot be overstated. Whether the home is occupied or vacant, a Professional Stager can assist you in maximizing offer price and minimizing time on market. Don't make the mistake of waiting until the home hasn't sold to understand that staging is your best tool for a home's potential sale.


Laura Landesman, Owner of Showhomes of The Woodlands, is a certified staging professional in The Woodlands, Texas and a RESA-PRO member. She is passionate about the power of home staging and loves working with Realtors and homeowners in The Woodlands and Spring areas to help sell homes faster and for more money.

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