Realtors have many tools at their disposal when marketing homes; only great Realtors take the time and effort to use any and all that will make the difference in a sale. These tools include professional photos, virtual tours, 3D tours, aerial views, staging, decluttering, and sometimes, more extensive work, such as painting and carpeting. We know that we have a buyer’s attention for a millisecond on the internet. If we want a home to sell quickly and for the best price, it is important to present it in its best light. Similar to going on an interview, you want it to look its finest, because first impressions do count.
Not everyone understands what staging really entails. There are many levels of staging. I virtually staged a beautiful home that was filled with old furniture; I staged a new construction home with everything pictured; and I staged an old family home that looked tired by rearranging furniture and adding some accents. Staging is all about creating a feeling and a longing. You want the buyer to understand the space and be able to picture themselves living there. I created a space to sit and talk to potential buyers while gazing out at the ocean. Who would not want that? What better way to create longing? They bought the house and the furniture!
As staging is a visual, I thought the best way to present my argument in the affirmative was to offer a few examples.
This oceanfront home had been on the market for six years without success. When I was given the opportunity to market it, I convinced the seller that in addition to freshening the house, staging would make the difference. At open houses, I often sat with buyers on the couch facing the ocean to chat about the house. It worked like a charm and I sold it to a family in six months. Price: $2,250,000
This family home was on the market for six months with another agency. When you walked in it felt old and tired. It was set on a beautiful piece of property, and buyers thought the value was only in the land. I sold it in two days to someone who is going to do minor upgrades and live in it. The children were so delighted that their family home was not going to be demolished. This is also an excellent example of the effect of professional photography. Price: $1,400,000
This oceanfront home was filled with old, island-style furnishings. It was not going to appeal to today’s younger buyers. I had it virtually staged, so it would not be one of the many homes that get deleted immediately from a buyer’s search. This approach brought many potential buyers to the open houses that might have otherwise bypassed it. Price: $1,825,000
When interviewing Realtors, be sure to ask them what unique plans they have to market your home. This is especially important if your home has been on the market for a period of time without a sale. Yes, it is true that it is not always about price. It is about going the extra mile, working hard, having a vision and taking the time to implement a great marketing program.
Linda Romano is the exclusive agent representing the Monmouth County, New Jersey, real estate market as a member of the Haute Residence Real Estate Network. View all of her listings here.
Images courtesy of Linda Romano