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Staging your home to sell

Confused about whether (and how much) staging your home to sell is needed in today’s market? We’re debunking 5 myths to help you get the best results!

In real estate, it sometimes seems like anyone who’s bought or sold a home considers themselves an expert… but we all know that’s not true! Different areas, eras, homes, and financial situations create radically different demands when it comes to selling your home.

And when it comes to staging—a step in the selling process that has changed RADICALLY over the past 5-10 years—myths and misconceptions linger.

We’re here to bust those myths and give you the real truth!

Myth #1: Light (or soft) staging is cost-effective

Especially damaging for those selling a vacant home, this myth says that light staging will cost you less, allowing you to keep more of whatever you sell the home for. In this scenario, the house has been cleaned out, and then a “stager” is brought in to add artwork, area rugs, accessories, and/or plants.

But there are so many strikes against sellers who do this.

The biggest single one is that adding a few decorative details will never create the kind of powerful emotional connection that makes prospective buyers stop in their tracks.

It’s like saying the smell of apple pie is just as satisfying as the taste. Wrong!

Buyers’ dreams and desires are fueled by the story they envision themselves living as they experience your house. And it’s that emotional connection that hooks prospective buyers and makes them ready to compete… hard.

Plus, without furniture, there’s nothing to truly communicate scale or flow. Empty rooms look smaller, which is the exact opposite of what you’re trying to achieve.

Smart and effective staging has been shown, time after time, to drive up the selling price further than no staging, or light staging—when a homeowner invests in properly staging a vacant home, the average return on their investment is 586%!

Talk about cost-effective…

Myth #2: Staging is for houses with something to hide

This myth, while mostly laid to rest within the real estate community, still lingers among some less-experienced homeowners. And occasionally we have to cringe when a prospective client asks us to cover up some defect in their home.

We gently—and firmly—explain that it is NOT the stagers’ role to cover up defects—in fact, doing so is in DIRECT contrast to the ethical standards we endorse!  Full disclosure of issues with a home is the law.

Staging calls attention to what’s beautiful and desirable about a home, and creates a visual “set” where buyers can imagine their own lives happily playing out.

Myth #3: Chopping your pillow tops makes seats look cozy

We’re not sure where this myth got started, but we see it all the time. People prep their sofas, armchairs and beds with nice plumped pillows, and then give them what looks like a karate chop, creating a dent in what would otherwise be a luxurious look.

This is the impression it creates: the pillows look older, like they’re sagging, and/or like you were lying down until 30 seconds before the prospective buyer had the nerve to disturb you!

The best practice for a quality appearance is to plump your pillows, arrange them side-by-side or with a slight overlap, and then leave them alone. That nice, smooth, top is a big piece of what creates the most inviting look and feel.

Myth #4: Adding area rugs to carpeted rooms draws people In

Here’s what really happens when you add an area rug to a carpeted floor: it raises red flags and creates a trip hazard!

Prospective buyers start to wonder what you’re hiding. Rather than looking up and around, daydreaming about their future life in your home, you’ve opened the door to their doubts about what ELSE you may be hiding (and not just under the rug).

Myth #5: Staging is just fancy decorating

This fifth and final myth does an injustice to both stagers AND decorators! Decorators use their skills to enhance their clients’ lifestyles. Stagers use their skills to provide clients with an unbeatable marketing tool.

While staging does rely on principles of good decorating, how the decisions are made regarding what repairs or enhancements to use are based on expertise about what will sell. Its goal is to ensure a house represents a particular lifestyle that will appeal to those buyers ready and able to compete to win it.

So, when it’s time to get your house ready to list, follow the guidance that the most successful real estate agents and home sellers know all too well: if the highest return on this major investment matters to you, be sure to get a pro to help with professional staging to sell. And if you’re in the Raleigh-Durham area, we’d love to help!

Sherrie was outstanding in helping us stage our home to sell. Her advice is professional and knowledgeable. She is so easy to work with and there is no pressure. She will work with you to make changes that are in…read more

Paula Ragatz

Our home sold in 2 days after working with First Impressions Home Staging! I had never used a stager for a real estate transaction, and frankly, I had some trepidation. I am so glad I followed the suggestion of our…read more

Kile Law

Sherrie did an amazing job staging our house to sell. We had it on the market for a couple weeks but it was vacant and not showing well. We hired Sherrie to bring some life into it and she was…read more

Alison Spain

Sherrie and the First Impression Home Staging Team did a great job. We engaged Sherrie in designing and procuring furniture for an entire four bedroom home. Our project was very time sensitive and she beautifully designed, procured, stored and staged…read more

Michael Thurston

Sherrie was seriously amazing! Our house looks so awesome after our FaceTime staging call (quarantine probs) She was personable, patient and very knowledgeable! Would 100% use her again and definitely recommend!

Gina C

First Impression Home Staging provided a virtual consultation so we could stage our home! They were professional and patient as we did the walk through. It was a pleasure working with Sherrie Medeiros. She helped us successfully stage our home…read more

Cheri K

Sherrie helped me remotely stage my rental property that is up for sale, using FaceTime (I’m in CA and Sherrie is in NC). I initially sent her photos of the house staged with a bare minimum of furniture, which she…read more

Rena W

My husband and I are realtors in Raleigh, and we’ve been using Sherrie’s staging consultant services for our clients, and can I just say, “WOW”?! First Impression Home Staging definitely makes a HUGE difference. . . even in this current…read more

Lisa F

We used First Impressions Home Staging to help us with a completely new interior design of a vacation rental we bought in the mountains of Virginia. Sherrie and Roslyn were both amazing to work with. They were conscientious of our…read more

Josee M

Sherrie has an amazing eye for color and a talent on how to bring out the best in a space. She spent time getting to know what items in my home meant the most to me and created a paint…read more

Shannon H

We recently placed our home for sale and hired Sherrie and First Impression Home Staging to stage it. They did a fabulous job and the house looks beautiful. Sherrie is wonderful to work with. After an initial walk through of…read more

Joan K

Sherrie did a fabulous job staging our home for sale! I would HIGHLY recommend her if you are preparing your home to sale. We had never used staging before to sell a house, but now we are certainly believers indeed!…read more

Rachel M

Sherrie came in to stage our home to sell & she did just that. She made terrific suggestions & simply put, she made our home more marketable. I highly recommend her & if given the opportunity, I would choose to…read more

Sheila C.

The home that you staged went under contract in 3 days with 2 offers. I am certain that your staging was instrumental. The sellers are thrilled. They are so excited. They are convinced it was the best investment!

Mindy O.

Thanks very much Sherrie! You did an amazing job helping us get their home beautiful and ready to list.

Heather Piper, KW Realtor

Hey Sherrie I wanted to share some good news… that townhouse in Brier Creek went live on Saturday morning, held it open both days, and we have an offer on the way today. The exact unit around the corner, not…read more

Hugh Grist, Grist Realty

We’d just like to offer a sincere thanks for the work you did staging our house. We believe that the advice you and Amy gave us along with your staging made a huge difference in both the price and the…read more

Sincerely, Roger & Carla Wilson

Are you selling your house soon? Let me tell you… I didn’t believe it… But our listing didn’t go as fast as we wanted and I decided to stage my empty home… We got multiple offers over asking in 48…read more

K Mitchell
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First Impression Home Staging bedroom decorating photo.

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