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Real estate folly: Staging doesn't work

Staging a home is a hotly contested suggestion for most sellers, one that agents always suggest and sellers always resist. One local company routinely pays the seller’s cost to stage their home because the company’s image is so important and they know a staged home sells faster and for more money versus its unstaged competition.

All agents know that homes that do not show well do not sell well. For agents there is little worse than trying to show a seller occupied home that is not staged. It is hard to get buyers excited about purchasing a home when they cannot look past the seller’s stuff. Staged vacant homes invite buyers to spend some time, get comfortable, and explore.

But still, time and time again we see sellers rail against the time and cost associated with staging a home. After all, if they love their home as it is, why shouldn’t everyone else? This is a situation where sometimes showing trumps telling. If you have a particularly staging averse client, take them on a two-home showing; one where the home is staged and one where the home is not.

Gina Chrys, a colleague of mine, has very definite ideas about the need for staging.

“By turning your home into a ‘model home’ you are presenting your home in its most appealing condition to potential homebuyers. Just ask the professional home builders who understand a staged home sells.”

Gina makes a very strong argument for staging. All of the big new home builders like Pulte or KB Homes actually have an entire house built and staged—the model home—to demonstrate to potential buyers how a home can really shine.

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