Staging: Tough Love for the Cash Hungry

Before you decide to Zillow/sell/list, I recommend meeting with a stager. Due to the popularity of HGTV’s wonderful programming, most people are aware that staging sells houses.
Our neighbor used a stager and sold his house in 2 days. We were pretty impressed so we got the name and number and set up an appointment. First, she was from New Jersey (and I really don’t need a second do I?) and second, she staged 1800 homes (!!!!)

We walked through our house and she basically told us what I would categorize as 3 type of fixes:

1. Things we had wanted to fix in the last 9 years but didn’t. We all know what they are in our houses. Granite in the kitchen was our sore point. The contractor is here installing it now and boy, do I wish I had done this years ago. It’s so pretty.

2. Things that bothered me that she said not to worry about. Um, I’m not going to publicly post them before I sell a house. Let’s just say I’m an engineer and that makes me detail-oriented by nature.

3. And then the last category, say what? Luckily for us, this tough love category was with the yellow paint in my kitchen and family room. Her response was “this is not your house, this is a product to merchandise”. Ok. Followed with, “it’s not that your house won’t sell, it’s HOW MUCH.” Cha-ching. Cha-ching. Message received.

At the end of the meeting, she listed all of her recommended vendors for the work we needed and let me tell you – I would have done all of this 5 years ago if I knew these vendors.  Get a stager and I would be more than happy to recommend mine.

A few things really shocked me and I feel the need to share.

Identity theft happens to 1 in 500 houses for sale.
We were advised to remove anything with our names, files that were accessible, etc.

People steal drugs from your house during showings.
I started to doubt people in general at this point.  Hide your prescriptions.

People will steal from you.
Remove valuables. The best was she told us people will keep an Altoids tin with putty and copy your keys.

The contractor isn’t finished with the granite so I cannot show photos at this time.  Maybe this weekend.

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2 Responses to Staging: Tough Love for the Cash Hungry

  1. Ah, this brings back the memories of having to do exactly the same things 18 months ago when we were preparing for our move to Paris. We also got a stager but we had done a lot of decluttering and fixing little stuff prior to her visits so we didn’t have too much to fix; only a few things to get ride of (like plants) and for her to bring a few accessories. Our house sold in 1 week but only because our agent had decided that we wouldn’t accept offer for a week and have all of them come in on the same day…Good luck with everything and with the move. (Suzanne)

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