Advice from a Professional Home Stager

The real estate market is very competitive, so you want to do everything you can to maximize the appeal of your home to potential buyers. Professional stager Lisa Shipley shared some of her best tips and tricks with GoStorageUnits.

GSU: Define ‘Home Staging’. How can it help a seller in their home-selling process?

Lisa: Home Staging is the process of marketing your home to appeal to the targeted buyer. It entails several aspects including depersonalizing, de cluttering, adding updates if needed, maximizing room flow and adding strategic staging with furnishings or accessories to highlight the homes BEST features and to diminish its less desirable features.

Buyers respond both emotionally and logically when viewing a home. A home stager can bring in furnishings and accessories to help the targeted buyer emotionally connect to the home by setting up the home to appeal to the lifestyle of the buyer. Staging also helps define the space. For instance, a small house looks larger with furnishings, and by adding furnishings, buyers can easily envision how the space works.

In any given market, buyers want the best house for the best price. If the home is appealing and staged to emotionally connect to the buyer, the seller will more than likely secure their asking price, sell quickly and may even gain multiple offers!

GSU: What is the biggest mistake you typically see when people are presenting a home for sale?

Lisa: The biggest mistake I see in listed homes is clutter. First impressions are so important when selling a home. If the first thing buyers notice when viewing the home or viewing online is clutter, they may not want to see your home at all and will be turned off from the start. Also, buyers have a hard time seeing through clutter and may think the home is not well cared for. Potential buyers may also think if the seller doesn’t care enough to market their house properly, they may accept a much lower offer.

Clutter KILLS equity, and it always makes me sad to see such an easy fix.

GSU: Can you share some of your best home staging tips and tricks?

Lisa: Here are some easy tricks I teach my clients while doing a consultation:

  1. When staging with accessories, always place items in odd numbered groupings, preferably in tall, medium and small placements. Groups of three appear less cluttered.
  2. Anything smaller than a grapefruit should be stored away. Small items appear as clutter.
  3. Buyers don’t like seeing traces of the homeowner in the bathroom. Every household member should have a basket that they put their personal grooming items in, so they can easily be stored away for showings, photos and open houses.
  4. Limit children’s toys to just a few favorites, and place in a basket or storage bin for viewings.
  5. Remove refrigerator magnets. They view as clutter, and buyers will be distracted by looking at your personal notes.
  6. Pack all seasonal clothing and items you are currently not using but want to keep. Give away or donate the rest. Rent a storage unit if needed. Remember, you will be moving soon, and the less you have to pack in the end, the better.
  7. Store family photos. Buyers will be distracted and will have a hard time envisioning themselves living in the home.
  8. Don’t forget to empty the garbage and to change kitty’s litter box every day. Remember, if it smells it doesn’t sell!
  9. Make sure the beds are made every day, clothing is picked up and the toilet seat is down.
  10. Make sure the house is clean – white glove clean. A clean and tidy house looks like a well-cared for house.

GSU: Thanks Lisa! These are wonderful tips for sellers!

Like Lisa said, ‘clutter kills!’ Use GoStorageUnits.com to find storage to stash your stuff while selling your home. You can contact Lisa for more information about her services at 503.643.0282 or via her website.

About Lisa Shipley:

Lisa is an ASAP accredited stager and has been consulting sellers and staging homes for over 6 yrs. She also belongs to RESA (Real Estate Staging Association). Her company, Imagine Home Staging and Design, has won several awards for staging show homes for the Oregon Street of Dreams and the Affordable Home Show.

2 Comments

  1. Kelly Melnick on January 28, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    great information in this article! Much of the same processes we go through in Interior Design! KISS! ( keep it simple stupid) still applies to all Design!

    • Lisa Shipley on January 28, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      Thanks Kelly! Yes Keep it simple works in both fields, and in life in general!

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Houzz Best Of Design 2018
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Lenny and Lisa are fantastic to work with! They are approachable, affordable and offer great feedback in regards to...

Posted by Patti Jensen on Sunday, January 1, 2017

Lenny and Lisa are amazing!!!! Thank you to Imagine Home Staging for creating a gorgeous space that is "picture perfect". True professionals, great to work with and have an amazing gift for design.

Posted by Teresa Harbert on Thursday, February 23, 2017

Great people, great furniture, solid service. I've worked with Lenny and Lisa several times and haven't been disappointed yet. I truly believe my properties sell faster because of their staging work.

Posted by Matt Loosemore on Monday, December 28, 2015

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