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Home staging tips for speedy, top-price outcomes


Home staging tips for speedy, top-price outcomes

Assisting clients to dress their homes for success is a crucial role for agents and property managers alike to ensure the best possible results from their marketing campaigns.

Staging is all about maximising the value of a home. It’s about presenting the property in the best possible light using furnishings and accessories to appeal to as many prospective renters or buyers as possible.

While there isn’t a lot of data on the benefits of home staging in Australian real estate, a survey by the International Association of Home Staging Professionals showed that on average staged homes sell for 17 per cent more than non-staged homes.

Not only do staged homes sell for more, they also sell more quickly. A 2016 report by the Real Estate Staging Association in the US reported pre-listed staged homes spent 90 per cent less time on the market than their non-staged counterparts. So staging is a win-win for agents and their clients, in terms of the payoff and time investment required.

Home staging plays a vital part in attracting clients to inspections, showing them the purposes of different spaces of the property and ultimately getting more competitive offers. Here are our home staging tips to achieve speedy and top-price outcomes.

Embrace greenery

With Greenery named Pantone’s colour of year for 2017, expect to see home staging embracing green in all shapes and forms this year. Introduce fresh rejuvenating hues of green into your client’s home using vases of Granny Smith apples, throws, artwork, rugs, cushions and kitchen utensils. Even suggest clients treat the front door to a refreshing coat of paint in a dark forest green to welcome clients to the home with a bold eyecatching statement.

Take a more literal interpretation of the greenery theme by introducing lush houseplants, foliage and green walls to bring colour and life to dull or neutral spaces around the home. For vacant properties consider using fake plants in your staging to eliminate maintenance issues, so they’re always looking happy and vibrant for inspections.

Less is more

Some clients, especially ones that have lived in their home for many years, will have understandably accumulated a lot of furniture and clutter over the years. Your best advice for clients like these is that they cut down and put non-vital furniture pieces and décor into storage to make spaces feel larger and more open, to allow the house to truly shine in listing photos and inspections.

If sellers are reluctant to remove some items explain that furnishing the home with the right amount of furniture will help buyers more easily connect with and fall in love with the property. Explain that without being distracted by excess furniture and personal decor potential buyers or renters will be better able to understand how they would use each room and start to picture themselves living there, a key first step towards them making an offer or submitting an application.

Styling options

If you’re uncertain whether to play up an industrial, contemporary or country feel in your listing presentation, the results of Brosa designer furniture’s nation-wide survey on Australia’s favourite furniture styles can help shed some light and guide your styling choices.

The survey revealed that what determines effective and appealing home staging will tend to differ from state to state. Results showed that modern and contemporary interior styles were the first preference of respondents in six (VIC, NSW, QLD, NT, ACT and SA) out of the eight states surveyed. Where country decor was the favoured style in WA and TAS.

It’s also important to think about the geographic location of the property when it comes to effective styling. Brosa's survey suggests that city dwellers love industrial styles but people in rural areas prefer country and cottage decor.

When staging any home think about who your most likely buyer is and how you can best appeal to them. For example, if you’re aiming to appeal to a younger demographic of renters or first home buyers, the survey suggests younger people prefer Scandi and industrial furnishings. Whereas, if your target audience is an older demographic (65 years plus) cottage style is the preferred interior look.

Bring in a pro

If you feel a bit out of your depth when it comes to home staging and you’d prefer less hassle when it comes to preparing your client’s home for inspections and listing photography, why not hire a pro to take over the job for you. That way you can focus on running a killer marketing campaign, prospecting and getting the best result for your client.

A professional home stager can take care of hiring furniture and accessories for both vacant and occupied properties, provide consultation for decluttering and improved traffic flow, and stage homes to maximise space, highlight its best features, add personality and enhance the overall ambiance. They typically will be able to view the home, consult, quote and stage it within a week or so depending on the scale of the job.

We hope these tips guide your approach to the staging of your next listing. For more ways to maximise the presentation of your listings take a look at this agent's guide to Fen Shui, 7 staging techniques to prep for an inspection, reasons to include people and pets in listing photos and how to stage an entryway.

Happy selling!

From the Team

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Seven home-staging tips to make your listings shine


Seven home-staging tips to make your listings shine

Ensure your vendor’s house shines for its open for inspection by recommending these simple low cost staging techniques. Explain that when it comes to selling their home it is important to market it effectively to potential buyers in the most attractive way possible.

Clever staging can be the difference between a quick sale and a house that sits on the market for months, which is not good for you or your vendor. 

Here are seven easy tricks to pass on so sellers can skilfully stage their home without breaking the bank, and most importantly tempt buyers to make an offer.

What staging techniques should I focus on when getting a house ready for inspection?

1. Depersonalise

One of the most important things a buyer needs to do when inspecting the property is to imagine themselves and their belongings living there. To help make this happen recommend that sellers pack quirky, valuable and personal items away and ideally store them away from the home.

All photos and portraits should be removed from view. Generally, wedding photos and family mementos draw a buyer’s attention to the seller’s family and can stop them from seeing the house as their own family’s future home.   

Removing personal photos, collections and quirky keepsakes also means there is nothing to distract or detract from the overall home itself. The seller needs to make sure the house is the centre of attention.

2. Deep clean

Remind sellers that noticeable grime, dust, pet odours and dirt are very off putting and gives potential buyers the impression that the home is uncared for and hasn’t been well maintained.

Make sure they pay close attention to cleaning light fittings and windows (inside and out) to make sure the place is light and bright come inspection time. From shining floors to gleaming appliances and spotless bench tops, every surface should be sparkling clean and pristine.

If they have pets, have the rugs and carpets steam cleaned and remove litter trays, as there is no bigger turn off to buyers than the smell of wet dog as you enter a house.

If they cannot handle a deep cleanse themselves or their house is especially large suggest that they hire a professional cleaning service to give the place a thorough once over.


3. Let there be light

Buyers want ‘light and bright’, not ‘dark and dreary’, so make sure the house is lit up like a Christmas tree for inspections and listing photography.

When staging the home for photography try to chose a sunny day and make the house appear as bright as possible. Have vendors open all the curtains and blinds and turn on every light in the home, even switch on lights on the range hood and oven to show off the appliances and kitchen.

A fresh coat of paint can also work wonders to lighten and brighten up spaces and makes a property a feel clean, new and well maintained.

4. Declutter and organise

Too much clutter makes homes feel messy, small and cramped. Have sellers clear out extraneous items, like piles of mail and magazines, shampoo and medicine bottles in bathroom cabinets, and remove toys, shoes and clothes from overflowing cupboards.

This can be tricky for some, but is worth the trouble to demonstrate to potential buyers just how much space there is for all their things.

If the vendor is moving out shortly after the sale it can be a good idea to have them pack up and put into storage off-season clothing, books, extra linen and DVDs to really show off the home's storage space.

5. Scent appeal

Prior to an open for inspection advise buyers to wipe down bench tops and surfaces with their favourite subtle all-natural cleaning product to give buyers the impression of cleanliness.

However, make sure they don’t over do it. Being overwhelmed with powerful and competing smells when inspecting a home can be very off putting for buyers. So let sellers know to keep the potpourri, aftershave, fresh coffee and air freshener use to a minimum.

6. Simplicity is key

When arranging furniture remember ‘less is more’. The aim here is to lead buyers' eyes to the room’s best assets. For example, make sure sellers don’t block off large windows with bulky furniture or crowd and take focus from a feature fireplace with a TV and armchairs.

A few simple décor touches of bright colour, like a turquoise throw rug or quirky vase help to add personality to spaces and photograph well for listings.

7. Create a sense of luxury and comfort

A seller doesn’t have to spend a fortune to make their home welcoming and to achieve a sense of luxury. By simply buying fresh fluffy white towels or bathrobes to hang in bathrooms, displaying fresh cut flowers in a crystal vase and pretty throw pillows for beds can make a home look luxurious and feel inviting.

Unlit decorative candles or bottles of luxury hand soaps are great styling tools to recommend for sellers to add a sense of comfort to their home and lightly fragrance the air as buyers move through the house. 

In preparation for an open for inspection remind sellers to focus on depersonalising, cleaning, lighting, decluttering, subtle fragrances and making the house feel comforting and homely. All this will help to make the property more attractive, allow potential buyers to envision themselves living there and hopefully achieve a good sale price.

Are there any other staging techniques you use that prospective buyers love? Please share them with us and our readers below.


Happy selling!

From the Homely Team


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