Real Estate Staging / Home Staging Blog


A Tale of 2 Stages

For home sellers it is the best of times, it is the worst of times, it is the age of wise choices, it is the age of foolish decisions, it is the age of sales success and the age of missed opportunities.

In short, now is an age where sellers are finally realizing that how their own "sales tale" plays out is more within their control then ever before. More and more know that to sell their home they need to take responsibility and a proactive role in its sale. How? Well, besides hiring a Realtor, today's sellers are starting to finally believe that they must do all they can to make their properties look and be as visually attractive as possible.

In fact this posted tale is about two couple who did just this... they hired experienced professional that knew how to add the right appeal required to get buyers interested in their properties. What makes this tale more interesting is the fact that this all took place during the worst real estate market in years and at the slowest selling time of the year... a cold and snowy Chicago December.

Late last year, we here at Real Estaging  got a call from two different Lincoln Park couples. While each seller had different were at different points in the sales cycle, each wanted to hire a real estate stager to advise them as to what they could do to best prepare the homes they were selling, yet still living in.  The first couple (Home #1 -above) had not yet listed their home and they wanted to get it in tip top shape before they formally put it up for sale in the market. The second couple (Home #2 - below) unfortunately had had their home on the market for over 6 months and was not getting ANY offers on it. This couple was tired, weary and was ready to get on with their lives.

 So we here at Real Estaging stopped by each home and did what most stagers do... we toured the properties and gave the typical and predictable staging advice and suggestions (i.e. declutter, depersonalize, make repairs, clean up, thin out and rearrange the furniture). But while staging consulting advice is good and helpful, both homes still need more. It is "MORE" that makes this staging tale a bit different and helped make 2 prospective buyers respond in the favorable ways they did.

You see both these homes needed just a bit MORE in the way of decorative accessories and furnishings (props). While bringing additional props into occupied homes is not always a typical service offered by most home stagers, we here at Real Estaging have found that by adding a few select accessories, a home can be totally transformed and given a final FINISHED look that influences buyers to make offers. Adding the right props helps to: 1) Add visual appeal, 2) Tie the home together so that it has flow and continuity, and 3) Solves perplexing space issues. The red dots in both sets of pictures above marks the props we add in some of the rooms.

So the first set of pictures (Home #1) is from a Lincoln Park home staging that got an offer just a few short hours after it had been toured by the very FIRST person who looked at it. For this particular property we loaned the sellers 45 props to give the home a finished / polished look. In particular, we replaced a massive coffee table with a smaller one, brought in a kitchen table & 4 chairs (they did not own one) and replaced "controversial" wall art with more understated art.

For the second home (Home #2) we had to add a few more items. For this listing we brought in about 50 items. One problem we had to address was the fact that the fireplace had no visual appeal. It needed some accessories to add some visual interest and attraction to it.  Another problem was with the wall directly to the right of the fireplace, it had NO art on it. The massive 12 foot high wall was a big, blank and boring! We are now proud to say that after being on the market for six months, the sellers of this property finally received an offer just 1 week after we staged it!

So that is our tale of two stagings... that ends happily for two Lincoln Park couples wanting to sell their homes. It all started when both took a long hard look at the real estate age we are in and then chose to do all that was necessary to help them market their homes successfully. Each may now be saying... "It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better opportunity to move on now that I have staged than I have ever known." (Sorry for the sappy ending... but you get the point.)

Staging It Forward...


Comment balloon 43 commentsCraig Schiller • February 26 2008 11:58AM
A Tale of 2 Stages
For home sellers it is the best of times, it is the worst of times it is the age of wise choices, it is the age of foolish decisions, it is the age of sales success and the age of missed opportunities In short, now is an age where sellers are… more