Read the success story below to find out how sellers who didn't believe if home staging would make a difference, ended up making $10,000 over asking price!
In October of last year we were referred by a Redfin agent to meet with her seller clients who lived in Wakefield, MA for a free home staging consultation. Although they were skeptical that home staging was necessary for their home, they agreed to meet with us to learn more. At the consultation we learned that the couple and their small child were relocating to Chicago for a job transfer and to be closer to family. The home owners had only lived there a year before the new job opportunity became available, and they remembered that when they were looking for homes this one stood out as the best quality for their price point. Because of this, they were unsure it was necessary to invest money into staging when the home already had many desirable features.
The 1750 square foot, 3 bedroom and 3 bath townhome is on a quiet street in Wakefield, MA but close to transportation. The home was built in 2004 and had an open concept feel, hardwood floors throughout the first floor, large sized rooms, and modern finishes. Although it was a condominium, it didn't require a condo fee. All around it was a great single family alternative.After our walkthrough of the home, it was clear that the home had many amenities that buyers would be thrilled about. However, the home wasn't showing up to its full potential.
Assessment of Buyer Demographic:
This home was a condominium but had the feeling of a single family home, which makes it a desirable property. Typically, young couples or people downsizing are looking for condominiums. Since the couple had a small child and needed the bedroom to stay a nursery, we could not change this. However, to appeal to young couple and people downsizing, it was clear all baby related items (aside from the nursery) needed to be hidden away. We also needed to add a modern, updated feel to the home to entice buyers.
A seven page customized Home Preparation Plan was emailed to the homeowners that detailed all the items that needed to be completed prior to our Staging Day. It advised the homeowner to remove all the children's toys from the living room, a few issues to repair, and painting the master bedroom and bathroom.When we saw the home, the master bedroom was painted in a strong blue color, and the master bathroom was painted purple. Buyers are looking for a move-in ready home and we knew this might be a reservation buyers would have to making a full price offer. To save money, we chose paint colors that were similar to the existing colors, but just toned down and more neutral. This way the painter would only need to do one coat and save on labor cost.
The Staging Day was scheduled for a day before the professional photographer was to come to the home to take MLS photos. We brought in some furniture pieces, art, accessories, bedding, towels, greenery and florals. Keep reading to see how it all came together.
The living room was buyer's first impression from the front door so it needed to show well. Since having a baby, the clients had been using their living room as a play room. The furniture was pushed up against the wall to create a play area in the middle of the room, and a large toy bookcase was in the room.To stage this room we moved the TV and stand to the middle of the wall (it was previously in the corner of the room). We pulled the sofa away from the wall by a foot or so, and placed two slipper chairs opposite the sofa. The clients brought up their coffee table that had been being stored in the basement. We brought in a new rug to bring more light into the room. Accessories, artwork, accent pillows, and a floor plant finished off the room.
Our clients had been using the dining room as an office and catch-all room. This would have confused buyers as to the true function of the room, and wasn't very attractive.To stage the room we brought in a dining room table and four chairs from our inventory. The table was set to add color and interest. A book case that was originally in the kitchen eating area was moved to this room to act as a buffet. Mirror and art (not shown) were added to the walls and the client's tall sticks softened the corner. Now there is a clear function to the room and the décor adds much needed style.
The home owner had placed baby proof latches on every cabinet in the kitchen to keep her small child away from any potentially dangerous chemicals or items. In the Home Prep Plan, we advised her to remove anything that might be dangerous and to remove the latches. We also advised her to remove everything from the countertops, except the coffee maker and toaster oven, and top and sides of refrigerator. This gave us a clean slate to work with.This kitchen was an easy transformation. We set up a cookbook by the oven and an orange orchid by the sink to carry a consistent color scheme throughout the first floor. Matching dishes to the dining room table were set up on the bar to make buyers notice this bonus eating space.
The home owners had beautiful furniture in their bedroom but the furniture arrangement was a bit awkward. We advised the clients to move the tall dresser on the opposite wall (not shown), which helped lighten up the room and make it feel more spacious. They also removed all the clutter and TV from the room. To stage the master bedroom, we added matching lamps on both night stands, dramatic blue art over the bed, coordinating accent pillows, and bright, white comforter. Accessories and florals on the night stand and dressers completed the look.
This guest bedroom had all the makings of a guest bedroom – bed, night stands, dresser. However, it was being used as a catch-all room and was in a state of upheaval when we first saw it. We advised the home owners to remove all the laundry and oversized night stands. We brought in two smaller matching accent tables to act as nightstands, added bright bedding and pillows, and a mirror over the dresser. Matching lamps, florals, and artwork brought the room together. Now it looks like a fun guest bedroom or a stylish teenager's room.
The home owner was home while we were staging and was delighted while watching the transformation. During the staging she excitedly called her husband and said, "The staging looks so amazing we are going to make so much money!" Well, she was correct, the home was listed and received three offers at the first open house and made $10,000 over asking price!
Testimonial from this home seller:
"Would it be overselling Buyers Desire Home Staging if I told you they were magicians capable of turning an ordinary home into nothing less than an extraordinary home that puts Martha Stewart's to shame? No, it wouldn't! First of all, Linda and Tiffany are both absolutely lovely people that are a joy to work with. Secondly, they are so gifted at what they do. They made our home look absolutely fantastic, so much so that we almost didn't want to sell it after they did their magic. But, a job halfway across the country close to family was too big of a pull, so we proceeded with the home selling process. We had an extraordinary amount of interest in our home. We received multiple offers and sold it immediately after it went on the market for over asking price! Buyers Desire Home Staging is completely worth the investment (which was extremely reasonable and affordable in my humble opinion) and you are very likely to make back the money you spend with them many times over. Highly, highly recommended!!!"You can see this review and more at: Redfin Open Book
If you'd like to know how much you could potentially make/save by home staging, download our Savings by Staging Guide.
Interested in having your home staged? Call us at 781-489-8489 and we can answer any questions you may have.Save