Definition: Home staging is the process of preparing a home (and everything within the home) for sale, with a particular focus on presentation.
It's also worth noting that staging a home and preparing a home for the market are not always the same thing. For example, to prepare your home for potential buyers you might make small repairs where needed. Obviously this is an important step before listing the home for sale, but it doesn't really fall into the home staging category.
To stage a home for the market, you will be focusing on things of an aesthetic nature, such as the home's organization, design and general appearance (as opposed to functional or mechanical improvements).
Why stage a home in the first place? Because it has been proven, time and time again, to increase the likelihood of a sale. In other words, a home that undergoes expert staging will usually sell faster than a home that has not been properly staged for buyers.
Staging a home can also help you get the best price possible when selling the property, because buyers will be less likely to question your asking price.The goal of home staging then is to improve the home's appearance in the eyes of potential buyers, with the ultimate goal of selling the home more quickly and for the highest possible price.
Staging a home for sale normally involves things of an aesthetic nature, such as design, organization and overall appearance (as opposed to mechanical or functional improvements).
If you are selling a home, then you've obviously been on the other side of the process as a home buyer. Think back to your home buying experience. Try to recall the difference between the homes you thought were "just okay" and the homes that made you say "wow!" Professional home staging can help you turn your "okay" house into a "wow" house.
So to sum up our introduction: You can think of home staging as presenting your house in a way that appeals to the largest possible audience, in order to ensure a quick sale for the best possible price. It bears repeating. The key to this whole thing is appealing to the largest audience — that's what it's all about.
Here's the bottom line: Staging your home can benefit you regardless of what type of real estate market you are in.
In a buyer's market, you will need every advantage you can get in order to sell your home for a decent sale price, so it's extra important to stage your home effectively. But even in a seller's market staging can help you achieve a quick sale for the maximum sale price.
Home Staging Benefits
Staging forces you to think like a buyer. When you set out to stage your home for the market, you will be looking at the home as if you were a buyer. Adopting this perspective early on will help you in many ways when preparing your home for the market.
Staging forces you to organize and de-clutter. Clearing away shelves, closets and cabinets is a big part of the home staging process. It also helps with moving, because you'll have to pack things away at some point anyway. So when you stage your home, you will also get a head start on packing to move. (sign up to receive a FREE Step-by-Step De-Clutter Program - fill out the box below)
Staging increases likelihood of a sale. When selling your home, you must do everything within your power to increase your chances of selling — and I mean everything. These techniques can give you an extra edge in selling the home quickly.
Staging reduces the home's time on market. When you put in the extra effort to stage your home effectively, you will move closer to a quick sale. Anyone who has sold a home before can attest to the fact that the least time the home is on the market, the better. This is especially important if you will be paying two mortgages until the home sells (as is the case when you buy a new home before selling the old one).
Staging helps justify the asking price. If you are in a seller's market and you price your home correctly, you probably won't have to haggle over the asking price. But in a market that leans toward the buyer, you need everything in your favor to justify the asking price. Proper home staging can help you justify the asking price by positioning the home more favorably in the buyer's mind.
Staging can be fun! It may sound like all work and no play at first. Granted, you will certainly be putting some elbow grease into the process. But staging a home can be a creative process as well, and many people find they enjoy it once they've begun.