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The Housing Market is Hot! Why Should I Stage It?

Updated: Jul 7, 2023

Napa is experiencing one of the hottest real estate markets ever. Home values are up, buyers want to move here or move up. For sellers, the instinct is to get their homes on the market – FAST. But marketing a home properly requires preparation and patience.

This starts with fixing all of those small things you’ve been living with that need paint, repair, or replacement. Most realtors will recommend patching walls, a fresh coat of paint, and refinishing or replacement of flooring. This may extend to updating light fixtures, whole bathroom updates, and kitchen renovations. Some will recommend a freshening up of landscaping with the removal of plants that detract from the curb appeal, replacing them with attractive and colorful alternatives.

Once this preparation is complete, a home is ready to stage. Staging is a relatively new concept in the real estate field. Simply put, home staging is the process of adding decor, furniture, and styling to a home to make it look like a model home or a picture in a catalog. The idea is that buyers respond emotionally to the homes they are viewing, and staging helps create a stronger positive response to a space. Some people are simply not visual. Viewing an empty house is hard. Figuring out the spatial relationships of large furniture pieces in a space can be daunting. Staging is an important marketing tactic that can make the smallest of homes feel livable and the largest of homes cozy.

Homes are flying off the market! Is staging worth it?

Staging your home makes your listing stand out among the other homes for sale and increases interest from more potential buyers. Today’s buyers shop online before they step foot into a property. 85% say that photos are the most important factor in choosing the homes to view.

Industry statistics report that staged homes sell 73% faster than empty homes. Think of it as visually merchandising your biggest asset. Staging is always less expensive than taking the first price reduction for a house that is sitting on the market.

Staging can increase the sale price

Having your home staged not only makes it more visually appealing but can also increase the buyer’s offer. According to the National Association of Realtors, 25% of agents representing buyers said staging increased offers by up to 5%, whereas another 12% said it increased offers by up to 10%.

Staging shows people how to live in a home

Let’s face it, much of the real estate on the market today was built for a different time and style of living. Figuring out to make it livable for today’s lifestyles can be tricky. Empty spaces can feel small. Staging lets buyers envision each space and its function so they can overcome the issues with a floorplan or style. It provides inspiration for how to create functionality within the spaces and inspires design ideas.

Do I see myself here?

Back to that emotional response . . . staging helps buyers understand how they would live in your home and picture their family in each of the spaces. While you may love the way you live in your home, it is limited to your taste and lifestyle. Opening up the possibilities with staging opens up the funnel of buyers who will look at and imagine themselves living there.

Originally published in the August 2021 issue of Napa Spotlight

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