|Posted on January 13, 2011 at 4:20 PM|
Or are you quick to realize that more efficiency comes from doing it the other way around?
Do you pull on a door that is sporting loud signage stating “Push”?
Do you walk backwards downhill?
Do you paint expansive walls with a brush rather than a roller?
And my favourite, do you choose to drive a nail into a stud by hand when there is a perfectly good hammer sitting right in front of you?
No, we don’t do any of these things.
Humans logically assess situations and choose the path of least resistance.
We look for options that dictate that we expend the least amount of energy and time as possible. In other situations, we also decide which route will financially cost us less in the long-run.
Of course we also choose methodologies that should produce the absolute outcome for us.
The same should be true of all Real Estate transactions.
Remember that old adage, “One needs to spend money in order to make money”?
This couldn’t be more accurate in the land of Real Estate, where the ultimate goal is to put a product on the market that is merchandised in its true best form.
Take a much smaller ticket item for some perspective, such as a pre-owned car. When we list our cars for sale, or prepare to use it as trade-in at a dealership, what steps do we take? At the very least, we ensure it is spotless. ($5-$50) We should assess whether there are any major or minor repairs to bring it up to insurance standards. ($100-$2000) Maybe the tread-depth on the tires is less than 40%. We should probably at least throw on a new pair of all-seasons for the new owner. ($300-$600).
These dollar amounts do start to add up. But, we don’t give much thought to the investment when we are selling a car. It is really just second nature.
Now, to put this into scale, we will usually sell a used car for $500-$15000, depending on the year, make, and model. We will typically invest $50-$3000 to bring that car up to a point where it is seen by buyers as valuable. We are merchandising it for sale, and will readily spend 5%-10% of the sale price on preparation for listing.
We will sell our home/property for $90,000-$3,000,000 (certainly not an all-inclusive range). If we were to follow the same logical process and spend 5%-10% of that sale price on the preparation for listing it for sale, we should be prepared to spend $4500-$150,000. Even if we brought down that preparation investment number down to 1%, we should be looking at investing $900-$30,000.
But when it comes to Real Estate, there are still only a very small number of sellers who are willing to adopt this idea. And, it is that small group of sellers who invest the time and money into cleaning, completing repairs, upgrades and renovations, and Home Staging whose properties stand out like a pleasantly sore thumb amongst their comparables on the market.
This small group also end up selling quicker and for maximum value.
Because Home Staging is fairly new, there are many people who can see the value in it, but just aren’t ready to jump in and experience the benefits. These are the people who are of the “let’s just put it on the market as-is, and we’ll see how it goes. If we get limited response, then maybe we will consider Staging at that point” mind-set.
At this point, we are putting the cart before the horse. When selling a property, the goal is to cast your net as wide as possible. If your property is not being presented in its most attractive light from the start, you are automatically missing out on appealing to potential buyers during that time-period.
The bottom line is that precious time and money is being wasted if you don’t have your home Professionally Staged from the start. If Staging is an after-thought, your listing will essentially have to be re-done by your Realtor® with new listing photos. Your property will have sat longer on the market, so you may be facing a pricing reduction. And, if you have already moved on to your new “home”, you may also be dealing with mounting carrying costs.
Another bonus to hiring a Professional Home Stager come into prepare your home for sale is that your investment is GUARANTEED to be less than any of the costs mentioned in the last paragraph. Home Staging, year after year, is statistically proven to bring an approximate ROI (return on investment) of 547%.
My hope is that, one day, consumers will realize that having your home Professionally Staged PRIOR to listing it for sale IS ABSOLUTELY THE PATH OF LEAST RESISTANCE for all parties involved.