The Indianapolis housing market has been hot of late. Can’t sell your home? Before you drop the price, consider home staging.
Can’t Sell Your Home in Indianapolis?
The Indianapolis housing market has been hot of late. Most homes stay on the market between 30 and 90 days, depending on the home’s value, location and other factors. If you have not been able to sell your home during this time frame, you may be wondering if you should drop the price. I’m here to tell you that rather than losing thousands of dollars in dropping the price, there are other options that may work in your favor.
What is home staging?
Home staging is a process where a staging professional, usually an expert in interior design, comes into your home and helps you recommend changes to make the home more marketable. There are many variations in home staging, so let’s walk through a few of them so that you can see available options:
Option #1: The Staging Consultation
The first and most affordable option for home staging is to do a consultation or walk-through meeting. This is affordable at around $100-$200 for a 90-minute to two-hour session. During this meeting, the home stager will take a tour of your home, ask questions and make notes on furniture, decor, paint and other items in the home which may need repair, rearranging or editing. The stager will then give you a room-by-room checklist of recommended changes to help the rooms stage well for listing.
You can then take this list and make the necessary changes yourself and hire a contractor for repairs or updates. This is often the most cost-effective way to take advantage of staging. The stager may recommend removing wallpaper, editing personal items, rearranging furniture or making small repairs. Sometimes the little things can make a big difference in how your home shows. For a few hundred dollars, this could result in several thousand dollars added to your sale price.
Option #2: Staging with affordable furniture and décor
The second most affordable option for utilizing home staging is to go through the staging consultation mentioned above, but also invest in a few new things to spruce your home up before listing. Your home stager will likely recommend these things and may even purchase them and stage them for you. These items, such as new towels and linens, flowers, art and accessories would replace existing items with those that would appeal to most buyers. For example, a new couch or chair could replace a worn or stained one.
Perhaps you were planning on buying new furniture or accessories upon moving but wanted to wait until you sold your old house. Well, now is the time to replace that item if it is hindering your ability to sell your current house. Sometimes your home stager can suggest lower cost furniture or can acquire these on your behalf to fit the room. Investing in these pieces will still be more cost-effective than lowering the price of your listing, and the bonus is that you get to keep the items and use them in your new home.
Option #3: Renting furniture and staging
The third option is still affordable but the costliest of the three home staging options. This includes renting furniture for your home to supplement what you have, or to stage your home if you have already vacated the property. With this option, your home stager will come for the consultation and will essentially design the space using rented furniture and decor. Typically, you will want to stage at least three rooms, and focus on the most important rooms to highlight features and give buyers and idea of what the home would look like if they lived there. These rooms usually include the dining or eating area, living or family room, and master bedroom and bath.
The cost for staging a vacant property or supplementing a home with furniture can vary. For Indianapolis home staging, the investment is typically around $1,000-$5,000 for three rooms, with a 3-month minimum rental contract. That comes out to only about $300 and up per room. Balance the cost of this investment compared to purchasing your own new furniture, as in option two, or lowering the price of your home. Your home stager can consult with you to determine the best option for your home and what it needs to stage to sell for top dollar.
Not all is lost if your home has been on the market a few days. Perhaps all you need is an objective viewpoint from a home stager, and a few small changes to your property. Before your real estate agent convinces you to drop the asking price, consider talking to a home stager for advice first. According to statistics, a staged home sells faster and for more money than a non-staged home. Remember, you stand more to gain if you sell the home for more money than your agent does. Be sure that you’re presenting your home in the best light, and buyers will see the value that your home brings.