My partner and I recently did a presentation for a Home Buyers & Sellers Seminar this past week and one of the things we talked about seemed to resonate strongly with our crowd. That is the importance of home staging to a home’s pictures online, which is the place to shop for a home these days.
We call shopping for a home online “speed dating“. Its very similar to going out to one of those speed dating events where you have only a certain amount of time to impress another person enough that they want to get your contact information in order to see you again. The home buying process is changing dramatically and we stress to our clients, realtor partners and sellers that 92% of Buyers are shopping online first! If your home’s pictures don’t impress them them within seconds they are on to the next listing with no hope of you ever even getting them to visit your house. In order to get their attention and keep it, your pictures need to reflect the upgraded lifestyle they are searching for.
For example, if you came across the following pictures, which one would you want to contact the Realtor about?
And yes, the above pictures are the *same* room however if the sellers had not brought in Rooms in Bloom and decided to just go with what was there, we’re pretty sure the house would not have sold the first day it was up for sale and for the full asking price (which it did). The sellers in this particular case were very market savvy and knew without being told that work had to be done before the house went on the market. This is not always the case, in fact, its not often the case.
Pictures are crucial. They are the deciding factor between having a Buyer flip through listings online and having them make an appointment to see your house. We see so many pictures which do not in any way complement the home and these pictures are put up by sellers and realtors alike. This is a shame because after visiting some of these listings, many of them had so much potential which is not showcased online.
So how do you impress those discerning and internet savvy Buyers? Here are a couple of tips:
Have your home professionally staged. 90% of Sellers cannot objectively view their own homes and therefore cannot see the clutter and too personal decor choices which turn off Buyers. Professional Home Stagers are trained to objectively view the home exactly as a Buyer would and they know what Buyers are looking for so they can skillfully maximze a home’s focal areas and minimize its weaknesses. Home Staging costs less than a price reduction once a home is listed for sale and it builds equity so that when it sells there is more money for the next home. Home Staging isn’t about decorating to suit one family’s tastes – its about preparing a home so that it appeals to all tastes which then ensures the house will sell faster with more offers. Why wait for that one Buyer who will appreciate one person’s design style? It just doesn’t make sense. With home staging, ensure your property is remembered hours, days and even weeks later.
Have your home professionally photographed. Once your home has been staged, ensure that the pictures taken are done so by a professional. Rooms in Bloom works with professional photographers for every staging project and offers them to the realtor and sellers at a great price. This way you have the best looking pictures possible and you will capture the attention of every Buyer, regardless of whether they are shopping online or in person.
So just like you would dress up for that speed dating event, make sure that if you are listing your home for sale this spring that you dress it up to appeal to as many potential Buyers as possible. With so much competition out there its important to stand out from the crowd!