Wednesday, January 7, 2009

DIY Home Staging

At a recent staging consultation, I inquired about a "Stage your House For Sale" book (not actual title) on the client's table. Naturally, I inquired about what tips the homeowner learned from the literature. Her reply, "Nothing, I didn't read it. A friend gave it to me." My wheels started turning, and a blog was born...

What is the purpose of a professional staging consultation?

In today's "Do-it-Yourself" world, there are dozens - no, thousands of "how to" books on home staging. Online searches yield pages of websites, articles, and advertisements stating, "You don't need to hire a professional stager. Stage your own home today for only $19.95...."

Have professional home stagers overstayed their welcome in the Real Estate community? Are they like your slightly, off-balanced uncle who won't go home when the party is done? After all, why would people pay $200 for a staging consultation when they can check out a book at the public library for free? Take a look at the analogy below...

Let's say you were given several 2 x 4's and were told to build a house. Don't worry, you won't need to do the plumbing or electric, just the framing. Easy. No problem. After all, there are books on the topic. You can just Google, "How to Frame a House." I'm sure Wikipedia has something on that topic.

The truth is, unless we have been taught about house framing, most of us would end up with just a nice pile of lumber, not having a clue on where to start. Then there are those who would be determined to have a go at it despite their lack of knowledge; their intentions may be honorable, but the end results would be less than perfect.

To get the job done correctly and in a timely manner, common sense would tell us to hire a professional who has experience with framing houses - someone who understands the process, who can prioritize the tasks, and utilize the tools in the correct manner.

Back to home staging... Even when sellers are given all the correct supplies to stage their house, they may still lack the understanding on how to apply those tools to their home. Books, online sources, and t.v. shows (our home staging lumber yard) offer great resources for professionals and amateurs alike but will only take Do-it-Yourself home staging so far. Consultations by a trained stager will give sellers the "blue prints" for staging, specialized for their own home.

Professional home stagers are asset to the Real Estate community, because they understand the staging process from hands-on experience; they prioritize tasks so sellers are not overwhelmed, and they utilize staging tools in the correct manner for maximum effectiveness.

KFM Staging & Design is a Minnesota home staging company that creates "First Impressions that Sell" in the Twin Cites and Western Wisconsin. KFM specializes in vacant staging and staging consultations. Visit our website for staging tips or to schedule your in-home or online consultation.

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KFM Staging & Design
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