Well in less than one hour the first Stage It Forward Roundtable Discussion will be taking place in Scottsdale.
Many of you emailed asking that I send you the questions we gathered from stagers all over North America... so here they are.
I thought that posting the questions we will be discussing will give those of you interested in participating a chance to be heard too.
I really gotta run but I wanted to get this posted.... we will be sharing more later.
PS: I know many of you would like a Round Table in your area... we are working on that too.
AFTER EVENT POST SCRIPT: All I am going to say is... "FANTASTIC" When Calie and I walked out we knew that everyone there left with much more than they expected. Calie will share more in her blog later today... as for me. I am going to go hang out poolside afterall THIS was to be a bit of a vacation too.
But I gotta say... I am thrilled!
So here are the "10 QUESTIONS" we are discussing today... actually because I recieved more then 10 good questions, I catigorized the questions to help faciitate the dialogue.
With more and more real estate agents taking formal staging training and large-scale furniture rental companies jumping on the vacant staging bandwagon, do you think our small-scale staging businesses could be rendered obsolete within the next few years...if so, what measures should we take to prevent this? Judy Kincaid, Destined To Sell Home Staging Services - Tampa FL
Is home staging a viable career choice? And by that I mean - can you make enough money to support your family, pay the mortgage and earn a living without any supplemental income? Maureen Henry, Rockland Home Staging - Rockland County NY
As the popularity of staging grows, more and more classes are created targeting the Realtors themselves. Has this trend had a negative or positive affect on your business? If you are 'accredited/certified' have you shared this impact with your training company? Kimberly Wester, Details Staging and Redesign - Northwest IN
How can the consumer be educated on how to find a quality staging company who understands that the staging design is in alignment with the price point of the home, the market, and meets the expectations of its buyers? Linda Barnett, Home Matters - Indianapolis, IN
If and/or when training courses are challenged to be regulated, will the staging industry and the merchandisers marketing that service gain the recognition and respect necessary to grow to be common practice? Karen Dembsky, Peach Tree Homes Staging - Atlanta, GA
How would/will standardizing on industry terminology, such as Simple Staging, Standard Staging and Select Staging impact marketing effectiveness and product quality? Kate Hart, Hart & Associates Staging and Design - Radnor, PA
NATIONAL AWARENESS / REPRESENTATION
Is it feasible to have a national (international) organization for the industry which will be able to accept members from all training schools and not be a reaction to or in league with any particular training school?
Keeping in mind that a written test will not be complete in determining individual home staging skills and abilities, can a system of testing be developed which can be used to determine acceptability of those individuals wishing to be a part of a national group? (Autonomy with minimum basic standards.) Yvonne Root, Rooms b.y. Root - Prescott, AZ
What (one thing or more do you see, think) needs to happen (or What do Stagers need to do) in order to take Home Staging from the "hit or miss" category in the minds of the RE community to bringing it to being accepted as an industry standard for all residential RE transactions? Karen Otto, Home Star Staging - Plano, TX
With the emergence of communities such as Active Rain & the widespread variety of staging courses how does it affect the industry as a whole when current industry leaders refuse to acknowledge the validity of good stagers not affiliated with their organization? And how do we create national ethical & work specific standards without the support & recognition of this same group? Melissa C. Marro, First Impressions Home Staging & Interior ReDesign - Charleston, SC
CURRENT MARKET CONDITIONS
How will the current volatile and dropping real estate market effect the staging industry? If the market continues to drop, will more or less people want to have their homes staged? Is there a price point in home sales below which staging will no longer be an option for home sellers and REAs? Michelle Minch, Moving Mountains Design & Staging - Pasadena, CA
What might be the long and short term effects that poor staging jobs will have on an already sluggish real estate market and the staging industry just trying to get off the ground as an accepted practice. Or is it possible that even poor staging jobs have good results? Joelle Greene, Joelle & Co. Designs - White Rock/South Surrey, BC
What are your least favorite aspects of being a Professional Home Stager? How do you overcome them? Also, what are your favorites? Beth Patnode, Stylish Transformations - Twin Cities, MN
When a staging company cannot keep up with the demand for their services, is it ethical to subcontract the work to another company? If not what is the best way to establish a profitable referral program? Jackson West, Reveal Estate Home Staging - Vancouver, BC
Given the same budget, would you rather do several vignettes in a few rooms, or 'full blown' staging in one room?" Jessica Hughes, Ambiance Staging - Bolder, CO
What are some of the most successful marketing tools used by home stager's? What marketing tools have you used to successfully keep and partner with REA's for repeat business? Janice Sutton, 1st Stage Property Transformations - Riverside & San Diego County, CA
I would like to explore overcoming the objections, usually posed by a realtor, to reduce a price on a house as opposed to using Staging as a marketing tool? Tracie Martin, AZ Home Staging Solutions - Phoenix, AZ
How can we put together some real stats about the difference home staging makes? Not stats that are hand chosen based upon the best success stories, but complete and actual overall stats between comparable staged and non-staged homes. Nickie Rothwell, Get Staged 2 Sell - Feng Shui for Life - Los Angles CA