Thinking about selling your home? Is your home already listed, but not receiving the offers you hoped for? Whatever the case, home staging could be a great option for speeding up your sale process. Whether you choose to stage your home or not, you should understand what a home stager tries to accomplish when they enter a home, and use that knowledge to improve your property before listing. If you’re looking to sell your home 90% faster, and get up to 4 times return on your investment, choosing to hire a home staging company could be one of the best decisions you make during the selling process.
Hiring a Home Staging Company
There are many advantages to staging your home, but, if you’re trying to decide whether you should stage your home yourself, or hire a home designer, you may want to consider what a home stager can do for your sale.
Above all, a home stager will use furniture and décor to accentuate the strengths that every room presents while making the weaknesses less noticeable. Think about it: if you were on the hunt for a new home and arrived at a property that was devoid of furniture, you’d probably notice any marks on the walls, squeaky door hinges, and a stain on the carpet. Staging a home won’t eliminate these common, less severe problems, but it reduces the attention that the minor issues attract.
Home staging is about illusions – it goes beyond simply cleaning and decorating. A good stager will use colour, texture, space, and shape to create moods and emotions within every room. In a staged home, every piece of furniture and décor is designed to appeal to any prospective buyer, regardless of their personal taste. Imagine how many more offers your house might receive if every viewer connected with the space on an emotional level…
That is the goal of a home stager: to make potential buyers feel an attachment to their new home.
Finding a Staging Company
So, you’ve decided that you’re willing to invest some money into staging your home for resale. Your next step is to speak with your real estate agent. Your Realtor will be able to give you professional advice based on your specific property, and while you may think that hiring a home stager is a great way to sell your home fast, your real estate agent will have a more measured, impartial view of your home. Your Realtor has the experience necessary to give you enough information to make an informed decision whether you should consider staging your home with an agency. Some factors your Realtor will take into account include information on the current market, your selling price, and the state of your home. If your Realtor agrees that professional staging is the right approach, they’ll have a few recommendations of stagers for you to choose from.
With a few home staging companies in mind, your next step is to gather more information about the company, their work, and their prices. While it may be convenient for you to simply call a staging company, set up a consultation, and sign the contract, you should ask a few questions before you decide to hire a particular designer.
During your initial call with a home staging company, there are a few important questions to ask that will give you some idea of their experience and the benefits that you can expect by hiring them. A few of these questions include:
- What training or certifications do you have? Though it’s important to note that a designer doesn’t need certifications to be a good stager, it does go a long way!
- What is the typical price range of the homes that you stage? Your goal is to try and find a stager that specializes in homes that are similar to yours.
- On average, how many days do your staged homes stay on the market? You should speak with your Realtor to find out the average number of days that a home spends on the market in your area, then keep that figure in mind as you compare staging companies.
- How long will it take you to stage my home? This is usually no more than 2 days, but some stagers have multiple contracts, and, if they will be using furniture that is currently in another home, that could be a red flag.
- What are your rates? Rates will vary based on a few factors, but you should try to get an idea of the different options available.
- Is your business covered by insurance? This is, without a doubt, the most important question to ask. If your home is damaged when a stager moves their furniture in and out, or, if something happens while the stager is using your home, you don’t want to be held liable. If a staging company doesn’t have insurance, find another company – end of story.
- What can I do myself? If you are looking for ways to save some money during the staging process, a reliable stager will be honest and can tell you what you can do yourself.
With this important information gathered, you’ll have a better idea of which home staging company you should set up a consultation with. But the big questions remain: what exactly are you paying for, and, how much can you expect to pay for home staging?
How Much Does Staging Cost & What To Expect?
When you hire a staging company, you can expect a few meetings before your home re-imagining begins.
First, your stager will book an initial in-home consultation that will last approximately 1-3 hours. The stager will take photos, draw an initial floor plan, and, if you are still living in your home, give direction on what furniture and items should stay, or go into storage. By some estimates, this initial consultation will cost approximately $300 to $600, though this varies based on the company.
After your initial consultation, a proposal is sent for approval, the contract is signed, and a time slot for staging is scheduled. On staging day, the designer will provide the delivery and installation of furniture, décor, and other items based on the number of rooms that you agreed to have staged. Usually, stagers will suggest you focus on key rooms that all buyers are especially interested in. The order of priority for these rooms is: living room, kitchen, master bedroom, dining room, bathrooms, and secondary bedrooms.
Staging day costs will vary based on square footage, number of rooms, and other factors, but some estimate that delivery and installation costs $500 to $600 per staged room. After everything is perfectly staged, an additional rental fee is usually required for the month. Altogether, staging your home could run you a few thousand dollars. While that may seem a bit pricey for furniture rental, you should consider the fact that, on average, staged homes sell 88% faster, and for 20% more than homes that are not staged… those numbers speak for themselves.
Your home is staged, a buyer loves it, and you get a great offer! Congratulations! The final step in your home staging journey is giving the staging company 7 to 10 days’ notice before you need the furniture removed. If you aren’t already living in another home, this shouldn’t be too much of an issue, but, be careful coordinating pickup, closing, and possession dates with your Realtor.
For many sellers, home staging can mean the difference between months on the market, and thousands of dollars left on the table during a home sale. With a Realtor’s expertise and a basic knowledge of the home staging process, you’ll have everything you need to make an informed decision on whether you should stage your home during for resale. Ever used a home staging company? We’d love to hear any pointers or stories about your experience below!