Setting the Stage for Your Home’s Success

Are you preparing to list your home for sale? In every market, the way a home looks is important. This is where staging comes in! Effective home staging prepares a house to appeal to the highest number of prospective buyers and invokes a personal connection to the space. According to a 2023 study by the NAR (National Association of Realtors) 81% of buyer’s agents said that staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as their future home. Additionally, 20% of seller’s agents reported an increase of 1%-5% of the dollar value offered by buyers when compared to similar, unstaged homes. Staging has become a simple yet necessary step to ensure your house is presented in the best possible light.

Founded in 2019, Olive + Ash Staging and Interiors is an all women team who have built a reputation for beautifully staged homes and exceptional client service. Based in Orangeville, they have received the Diamond Readers Choice Award for Best Home Staging Services from their hometown for the last two years and are nominated again this year. The team has staged close to $300 million dollars worth of real estate and draw from their experience and expertise to carefully design each home for sale. 

Although staging has become a common practice used by many agents, there are still many misconceptions surrounding the industry. One of the most common is that staging and designing are the same thing. This is not true! When Olive + Ash is working with a client for a design job, they create an environment specifically designed for that individual’s needs, tastes and specifications. Staging is the opposite; think of it as interior marketing. The goal is to de-personalize a home and then market it to buyers, highlighting all the best features and helping the buyer to see it as their own. A skilled stager has the ability to walk into an occupied home and reimagine it in a completely different way, to create a ‘what could be’ space that inspires possibilities. 

Staging is also important in a vacant house. Purchasing a home is an emotional decision and an empty room is difficult to connect with. Visualizing the potential of an open space is very difficult for most people, and an empty space can often feel smaller than it actually is. Television shows have certainly influenced buyers’ expectations. Homes listed for sale on the popular HGTV programs are never left empty. In that same study previously stated, 58% of buyer’s agents reported that having physical staging available for listings was of importance to their clients. 

Perhaps the biggest misconception is that staging is just moving some things around, adding flowers and throw pillows and voila! … the house is staged. This is also not true. We asked Esther West, Founder and Principal Designer at Olive + Ash to walk us through the actual process. The first step is an In-Home Consultation with one of the lead stagers. The stager will go through the entire home, noting any renovations, painting, or touch ups in addition to layout, furniture availability, etc. This is followed up with a thorough list of recommendations of everything that should be done to prepare the home for sale. Following this, time is spent preparing a detailed design plan for the house. Inventory is selected from their 3000 sq ft warehouse, taking into account every item needed for each room. When staging day arrives, everything is carefully wrapped and packed for transport to the house. Staging can take anywhere from 2-8 hours, depending on the size of the house. When the house is sold, the team will return and pack all the items to be returned to the warehouse.

A big question often asked is ‘can you live in a staged home?’. Absolutely. The majority of staged homes are occupied. In fact, Olive + Ash will take each situation into consideration (pets, kids, sellers who work from home, etc.) to ensure the design plan works for your life, yet the home still looks flawless. As an added bonus, a 2023 study by the Real Estate Staging Association showed that staged homes often spent 73% less time on the market!

By creating an inviting atmosphere and highlighting all the best features, you can instantly capture a buyer’s attention and give yourself the competitive edge in the real estate market. That is why staging is such a powerful tool!

WRITTEN BY: JILLIAN KENT | PHOTOS & RESOURCES: OLIVE + ASH STAGING & INTERIORS

Author: LivingSpaces

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