Excellent home preparation, staging, and photography are crucial when it comes to getting the absolute highest sales price for your Seattle or Eastside home. Here’s how we help you in every phase of this process.
Stage 1: Home Preparation
Before we get to home staging, we work with you to set conditions for the best possible result. Mike and I walk through your home and any outdoor areas with you and make a comprehensive list of everything we feel needs to be done in order to maximize your home’s value before going on market. We work with you to tailor a plan that meets your goals and requirements in terms of timing, sales price range, and the amount of time and money you are willing to invest in preparation. We provide contractor referrals, and often make several trips back to provide follow up advice.
Stage 2: Home Staging
Home staging is included as part of our standard listing service, and it’s where Mike and I come into our element. It is absolutely crucial for your home to prepared in a way that shows off its most valuable features. This requires careful thought as to how prospective buyers will see your home from the time they first pull up to the driveway. Having worked with home buyers for 15 years, I have an excellent perspective on what characteristics of your home are most likely to appeal to them, and how to maximize that appeal.
Depending on whether a home is vacant or occupied, we may work with the furniture already in the home, hire our own pieces, or both. We own an arsenal of art and other staging items, and we know how to stage in a way that creates the best possible experience for the viewer. Below are a few of the key points we keep in mind.
Guiding Buyers Through Your Home
People are always looking for something to look at, which means that if we don’t provide them with something to look at they will find something on their own. Therefore, it’s important to be proactive and create visual points of interest that provide a positive effect and may also guide visitors from room to room. We use decor items that are subtle enough to create atmosphere without being distracting.
Creating Clean Lines and Open Flow
Just as with photos of people, the camera usually “adds ten pounds” to the rooms of your home in online photos. This is why we often end up removing items and/or moving furniture in order to create an open flow and clean lines that prospective home buyers love. We do the same with outside areas in order to create a seamless experience.
Sending a Clear Sales Message
“Know what you’re selling” is one of the first rules of marketing, and it’s crucial in home staging as well. Mike and I often see homes that are prepared and staged in a way that inadvertently advertises an undesirable feature while not drawing attention to a key selling point. We understand what features are actually going to sell your home to its target market, and we stage with those in mind.
Knowing How to Not Over-Stage
The goal of home staging is not staging in and of itself, but to maximize the home’s market value. This means that just hiring a stager does not necessarily get the job done. Again, it’s important to know what you’re selling and emphasize specifically those features that home buyers are looking for. It’s also crucial to stage for the camera; depending on the home, staging features such as elaborate dining room settings can become the focal point of the room and may even create an impression of clutter.
Stage 3: Professional Photography
Professional photography is another service that we provide at no additional charge when we list a home, regardless of its price point. We use two of the best home photographers in the Seattle area and work with our home sellers extensively in preparation for “Photo Day.” We simply won’t be satisfied unless we end up with pictures that meet our standards.
Most prospective home buyers view your home online before ever deciding to schedule a showing, so it’s crucial for the photos to send a clear message about the desirability of your home. Fortunately, properties that show well online typically show very well in person also, so by aiming for the best online presence we accomplish both objectives.