Sell Your Home During Coronavirus: Staging is Still Key!

By June 11, 2020 Decor, Real Estate

A few weeks ago, I mentioned that it was a buyer’s market in terms of home sales: There were quite a few homes on the market from before the pandemic and not a lot of buyers out looking. As predicted, once the quarantines were lifted, buyers came out in droves, and now all of the homes that were on the market are gone! As a result, the market has gone from a buyer’s market to a seller’s market: There are tons of people out to buy and not enough homes for sale, so that means that as the seller, you will be in a prime position due to the bidding wars that will likely take place over your home. Now, you may be hesitant to sell your home during Coronavirus concerns, but you don’t need to be as worried as you think you do. As long as you’re careful and follow the CDC guidelines, you and your family will be just fine.

“But don’t the CDC guidelines negatively impact my ability to do some of the things necessary to sell my home?” Yes and no. Yes, obviously we can’t conduct “business as usual,” and in a lot of ways this hinders your ability to do some of the things you’d normally be able to do. But those of us who have been in this business for long enough have figured out ways to work around these limitations, so that everything can function just as well as it normally does – even if it may look a little different.

I’ve already discussed some of the broader differences between selling your home during coronavirus versus selling it before, but I’d like to give you a more specific example here to show you what I mean.

Some sellers may be concerned about the prospect of selling their home unstaged, or may forego staging in the interest of not having anyone unnecessary in their house. Both of these views are unnecessary: You can still have your home staged, even without having a stager come to your house! Kathy Strieb of Florida wrote more on the subject, and how it works, in a recent blog post.

Tips to Help Sellers Who Are Concerned About Having People In Their House

Most states have opened for business, even though it may not yet be “business as usual.”

If you are a seller who is ready to place your home on the market, the idea of having a stranger in the home may be somewhat disconcerting now as we have the threat of the coronavirus still upon us. Your agent may have suggested that you prepare your home to sell and may have even recommended contacting a home stager for a consultation. If you’re not yet ready to have others in your home unless absolutely necessary, you can still call on a Home Stager.

Stagers, just like other businesses, can provide Virtual Services.

Thanks to today’s technology, schools, businesses, and even the medical profession have been able to continue to provide services while we try to maintain our physical distances. Home Stagers can do the same, using Facetime or any other apps that allow you to have video calls or conferencing.

Your stager can see your rooms as you walk through your home and make recommendations based on what they see. Some stagers ask that you take notes and others may provide a written report.

Not comfortable with video calls?

You can take photos of your home, including the exterior, back yard, and each room, upload them and send them to your stager for consultation. Again, recommendations can be made with easy-to-follow instructions.

Some tips for your photos:

  • Make sure your stager can see the whole room. Make sure you take a photo from the entry point of each room, and then photos from every corner.
  • Make sure the rooms are well lit. Your stager can’t help you as well as they could if they can’t see everything clearly!
  • Remove what you plan to move. If you have plans to remove items in your home or need to tidy some items up – like stacks of newspapers or magazines you plan to recycle – go ahead and remove them. This will help your stager see the space more completely.
  • However, go ahead and leave the items that you normally have out. These may be items or furnishings that can be repositioned or repurposed in other rooms!

You won’t be left without help!

If it is suggested that you purchase a few items to enhance a room, you can text your stager with a photo of the item for their opinion.  (My clients have texted me from Home Goods and Marshalls more times than I can count.)

And don’t hesitate to send your “After” photos to your stager. If any tweaking is to be done, they will be glad to help.

Certainly, times are different…However, the basics haven’t changed.

The perceived value your buyer sees in your property can determine if you get a viewing or even an offer.

When you sell your home, maximize the investment you have in it by making sure your buyer will see all the possibilities of it.

An Argument For Staging Your Home, Even When Selling During a Pandemic

If this is your first time selling a home, you might be wondering, what exactly does this mean? To answer your question: Professional stagers arrange furniture and decorate your home in ways that will increase its visual appeal for potential buyers. However, you might not be sold on spending the extra money for something you think you could probably do on your own. Costs for staging a house can vary, but on average can cost about $500. You are probably wondering, is it worth it? As a realtor who has been in the business for over 30 years, I believe it is!

In my experience, I’ve seen that staged homes typically sell faster than homes that are not staged. Kathy Kosciewicz, Founder and CEO of Brandywine Staging and Design, says, “Most of the time, I see staged homes sell 80-85% faster than homes not staged.”

Why is this, you may ask? The answer is more simple than you may think. Professional stagers have an eye for design. They view your home with fresh eyes and can arrange it in ways you might not have considered – a homeowner who has lived somewhere for a number of years might have a hard time imagining all of the possibilities, having gotten used to seeing it one way. This makes for more appealing photos that will be displayed online for any potential buyers. The way a house is staged and photographed can greatly influence someone who sees pictures online to schedule a showing, which is one step closer to selling your home! Staging gives potential buyers an idea of what it could be like to live in your home.

Not only do houses sell faster, but staging also increases the value of your home, just due to the visual appeal. According to Forbes, “A staged home will sell for 17% more on average than a non-staged home.” This is a great margin and really proves that staging is worth it!

Finally, moving and selling is hectic under normal circumstances – moving and selling duing a pandemic is more so. Allowing someone to stage your home takes away any stress or insecurities that sellers may feel about having their living space open for public viewing. Stagers may use items that you already have in your home or they may bring their own props to decorate. It might be a bit of an adjustment seeing your home space become depersonalized through staging, but this is part of the moving process and it may even help you to let go.

So, in conclusion…

Don’t hesitate to sell your home right now! Selling during coronavirus puts you at a huge advantage and will give you the “pick of the litter,” is it were, in terms of buyers and bids. And don’t hesitate to have your home staged, either! Staging your home can do wonders for its value and selling potential, and there are very simple ways that you can do it while abiding by social distancing guidelines – and that goes for other processes involved in selling your home right now as well!

If you want to find out more about how to sell your home during a pandemic, please give me a call or send an email – I’ll be happy to explain all the ways we can make it as safe, easy, and simple a process as can be. I hope that we can have a chance to work together to find someone else who will love your home the way you have!

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