Setting the stage for a successful sale

Often the presentation of a house can be the most important thing when trying to make a sale. We have all heard the allure of freshly baked bread.

Now, home staging has becoming an integrated part of the open house process, on top of stand alone photography.

Painting a picture of what life within the property could be like, it has been proven to increase sales where 63 per cent of buyers are willing to pay more money for a house that is ready to move in to.

Fine & Country Cambridgeshire have used home stager Laura Holland to assist with the marketing of their properties.

“By making a home appealing to the highest number of potential buyers”, explains Simon Bradbury of Fine & Country. “Selling a property instantly becomes a much faster and lucrative process for all. One of the main reasons for a property sitting on the market is because of its poor presentation. Buyer expectations are placed so high, so for them to come crashing down is the worst possible outcome.”

Laura has seen the effects first hand of what the smallest touches to a home can do to the psychology of the buyer.

She said: “Home Staging is about ‘setting a stage’ for prospective buyers. It is about achieving universal appeal, using ideas and styles that will enhance the main features of a property, while also thinking about how to incorporate the existing contents.

“The service aims to maximise the potential of a property and present a ‘lifestyle’ to the buyer. This can be achieved by dressing a property with accessories, re-decorating, creating new storage options and changing the layout and lighting.”

By working with Laura, Simon and his team have really seen a marked improvement.

“Simon has really embraced the idea of home staging and has recommended me to many of his vendors,” said Laura.

“I will help home owners by suggesting improvements and adding the details that is needed in the photo shoot as well as on the open house event itself. I understand that for vendors it can be a stressful time. In my experience, vendors often realise themselves that they should make improvements but don’t know where to start and what to focus on.”

Open Houses are increasingly popular for sellers, ensuring more viewings, competitive offers and ultimately the final sell for up to 10 per cent more than the asking price.

For buyers too, it allows them to view property under far less pressure, in a relaxed environment with the benefit of visualising their décor on a blank neutral canvas.

Research has demonstrated that nine out of 10 people simply can’t envisage how a property could look with their own belongings in it.

Traditionally, the American real estate marketplace has always used Home Staging to prepare for an Open House viewing. This America realty trend has now more prominently been picked in the UK, hoping to match their success.

Statistics have proven that a staged home will sell 3 times quicker than an un-staged home. The investment you make in home staging is typically a lot less than the reduction you may have to make if the house won’t sell.

Simon said: “The three things that make your house ideal for home staging for an Open House event are; firstly it must relatively new on the market. Secondly, the property must be realistically priced to initially attract people through the doors. Finally, interest in the property must be large enough to sensibly predict an Open House would be a success.”