Your largest commodity is at stake, and it’s worth the investment to stage your vacant home prior to listing. Finding the right stager to help market your home to sell fast and for top dollar is critical.
When searching for a stager, I recommend looking at their website; particularly the portfolio to see their work and make sure it fits what you’re looking for. Make sure the stager you’re considering follows these design basics, because the details do matter.
Scale – The size of a room should determine the size of the furniture to be used. For example; smaller dining rooms require a smaller table. Other dining rooms, like many in today’s open concept homes are larger and require a larger table.
The size of a rug to be used under the dining table should be proportionate to the table and size of room. A good rule of thumb to remember is when the chairs are pulled out from the table, the chair legs should still be on the rug. If they are not, the rug is too small. Always leave some of the floor showing around the room so the potential buyers can see it.
Using furniture and a rug that are too big will make a room appear crowded. Too small, and the room will feel overwhelming and “too big”. Potential buyers may be concerned that they don’t have enough furniture to fill a room or that the home is too big for them.
The style of the dining table and chairs (or other furniture) should be determined by the size and style of the room. A large open concept dining room would require more formal or substantial seating, not trolix or metal chairs. These chairs are more appropriate for a kitchen setting.
The size and style of the furniture should be determined by the size and style of the room, not by what’s left in inventory, or personal style.
Another place scale is important is in the artwork and accessories. Accessories should parallel the scale of the furniture, and the scale of the room.
When using accessories on a table, they should be big enough to be seen in a photograph, flow cohesively with the rest of the staging, and create visual interest, without being cluttered. At the same time, you don’t want a coffee table to look barren. It’s a balancing act. A balance of accessories, size, colors and textures.
Art is one of the most important aspects of staging. It ties everything together, making the colors cohesive from top to bottom and gives balance to the room. Imagine a room with neutral walls, furniture, décor, and even the appropriate sized rug, but no art. Without art, the buyer’s eyes are focused on either the furniture, (which they are not purchasing) or the walls, that are empty. We all know that empty = cold. That defeats the purpose of staging.
And as I mentioned, the scale of the art is important. Hanging a small piece on a large focal wall, above a sofa or over a fireplace will look out of place. For these areas, a larger piece of art is needed to draw the buyer’s eyes up . . . above furniture level. After all, we want buyers to see the entire room from floor to ceiling.
Two other areas that should not be overlooked when staging is the kitchen and bathroom. It is still true bathrooms and kitchens can help sell a home. No matter how updated and beautiful they are, they should still be staged. Staging is like icing on the cake. Imagine 2 identical cakes, both taste the same, one has icing, one does not . . . which one will you go for?
Hire a professional and remember, as with everything else: you get what you pay for. If you’re in the market for a home stager, I encourage you to visit the RESA website here to find a professional home stager in your area. RESA stagers are dedicated to advancing professionalism and excellence in real estate staging. Home staging is not decorating, it’s a science that when done correctly nets more money in a shorter amount of time. Make sure you’re investing your staging dollars wisely by hiring a RESA Professional.