I have to admit that when I browse through online listings and see vacant homes for sale, I cringe. As a stager, it’s one of the first things I remember being taught (and probably one of the most important).
To all sellers and sales reps out there, here are the top 8 reasons why you should (always) stage a vacant home:
# 1 - Empty rooms appear smaller than they are
Many people think an empty room will look larger however the reality is they actually feel smaller.
Potential buyers may think their furniture won’t fit and cross your property off of their list. When buyers start questioning a home, you’ve lost them and they usually walk away.
People are visual. Show them a full living room set can fit in the living room and a full queen or king bedroom set can fit in the master bedroom.
#2 - 90% of people can’t visualize furniture in an empty room
Home buying is an emotional process and emotions are evoked through seeing the total package (not by empty rooms which feel cold and uninviting).
Buyers will miss out on the true potential of each room without a visual presentation of the space. Don’t narrow down potential buyers to only 10% of the people coming through the door.
#3 - 85% of staged homes on average sell for 6-25% more than un-staged homes
When selling your home, the goal is to sell it for as much as possible and as quickly as possible. The longer your home sits on the market, the less money you will make on the sale.
When a home has been on the market for some time, it sends a red flag to both buyers and sales reps and they may not even consider it for showings.
If a vacant home is not selling, the price continues to be lowered in order to entice buyers, as that is the only marketing tool. The investment to stage your home will always cost less (easily) than your first price reduction. Don’t leave money on the table when selling your largest asset.
#4 - Staging puts money in your pocket
According to The National Association of Realtors, staged homes typically see an 8-10% return on a 1-3% investment.
Vacant homes send the message that the seller is desperate and willing to deal on price and terms. And, if you do get an offer, it may reflect a price that is below what the property would fetch if it had been staged.
Staged homes can usually support a higher list price. Many times after a property is staged, the sales rep will increase the asking price as the features of the home have been highlighted and the overall presentation of the property is better.
Studies have shown that buyers are willing to pay more for a home they have fallen in love with. Sometimes this means they will even pay more than the asking price.
#5 - Staged homes produce standout photos
Over 97% of today’s buyers start their home search online. Photos of empty spaces do not wow anyone.
If a potential buyer is not impressed with the online photos, it is less likely they will want to view it. Don’t lose them before they even come through the door.
#6 - Staging draws attention away from any flaws and puts the focus on the selling features of the home
In a vacant home, normal wear and tear will become magnified. Buyers will notice every tiny imperfection and focus on them instead of the impressive features of the home.
Home staging redirects the buyer’s focus to the selling features.
Buyers are looking for reasons to offer less money for your home (don’t give them any).
#7 - Staging creates a lifestyle that appeals to the home’s target demographic
Real Estate has target demographics and markets. In order to secure a sale, you must know your demographic and ensure you market to them effectively (ie. family, retired couple, etc).
People don’t buy houses, they buy homes. They shop with logic, but buy homes on emotion. Vacant houses feel cold, making it difficult for buyers to feel an emotional connection. By staging your home to appeal to the target demographic, you will evoke the emotion that will lead to the sale.
Buyers take seconds to make a decision about a space. If the property is vacant, there is nothing to keep them interested in staying longer and nothing memorable about it after they leave. Staged homes give buyers something to stay and talk about. The longer you can keep a buyer in the home, the better.
#8 - Staged homes sell faster in slow markets & for more money in hot markets
Home Staging has consistently proven to add value to any home.
Don’t help sell the house down the street! Ensure your home shows at its very best, target your demographic and outshine your competition.
Treat the sale of your largest asset as a real business transaction, because it is one.
Home staging is a smart investment that is crucial for selling vacant properties. It is a proven marketing tool that brings real results – higher sales in shorter amounts of time.
By not staging your vacant property, you risk having it sit on the market, reducing the asking price, and having it become dated which will ultimately cost you much more than the initial staging investment.
Contact me to learn more about how I can help!