We all know the real estate market has changed drastically over the last 5 years. Much of what worked in the past is no longer relevant to today’s buyers. Purchasers today have a wide assortment of homes and condos to choose from, and therefore their expectations of quality and cosmetic appearance are higher than ever.
Today’s market is a tale of two types of properties. They are at opposite ends of the pricing spectrum At the low end of pricing are foreclosures and homes in need of repair. Pricing may be 25%-30% below a home or condo that has been fully remodeled. Therefore, at the high end are properties that have been fully remodeled, with updated kitchen, baths, flooring, paint, etc They will attract a much higher offer and in a shorter period of time.
If your goal is to get top dollar in today’s market, consider hiring a stager! These are professionals who specialize in guiding a homeowner through the process of making sure the home or condo meets today’s buyer’s expectations of colors, condition, and furniture placement. For a relatively small fee for initial consultation ($150-$300), you will have a consultant helping you choose the best options to bring back the best returns. If furniture and accent pieces are needed, these professionals will stage the home with pieces they own and will charge as a monthly rental fee plus their time invested in the staging process.
Think about it. A $300,000 home showing average, with dated interior may sell for 30% less than a home fully remodeled and staged. If the stager charges 1-2% of the value of your home, it pays to invest in this service as your returns will be much greater than the cost of a stager. Also, time on the market will be greatly reduced if your home stands out over the competition.
Even if you don’t invest in a new kitchen or bath, a staging consultant can bring those rooms to life by changing wall and ceiling colors and adding some accent pieces. When viewing homes, buyers make decisions using all of their senses of smell, sight, and logic. A property that shows well using today’s colors and accents can evoke a sense of satisfaction, peace, and calm. They are not focused on all of the money they will need to spend to bring the condo or home up to today’s standards.
You can always sell your home as is without making any improvements. But understand that buyers today have so many options. They can look at foreclosures selling at 50%-60% below market, needing significant updating. You don’t want a buyer to perceive your home to be competitive with a foreclosure with such great discounts.
To find a reputable staging consultant, you can call your Realtor and ask who they have had success with in the past, and are reasonable in their pricing. You will be amazed at the difference proper color selections and correct furniture placement can make in the final sales price, as well as much shorter time on the market. That old saying about spending money to make money holds true in today’s ever changing real estate market!