5 Ways to Wow Your Buyers’ Senses

Posted by admin under Home Staging Education

Photographs can only go so far when trying to win over buyers. They are a necessary step, but the process of selling your home involves so much more. The magic really happens during a walk-through. When you appeal to the major senses—sight, touch, and smell—you’ll really be able to make a great first impression.


1. Big Artwork


Walking into a room with bare walls doesn’t usually feel inviting, but a beautiful piece of art can set a different tone. An interesting painting or print can provide endless inspiration. That’s why they make great “jumping off” points for interior design. Art serves as a great reference for color choices with accent items and furniture.


When choosing art for home staging, sticking with muted abstracts or landscapes tends to be best because they have a more universal appeal. We especially love to incorporate large artwork (when space allows). These can also help ground a space and guide the eye to a central focal point.


2. Cozy Rugs


Another way to ground a space is to set it up with a fantastic area rug. We love the added texture of this piece on the hardwood floor. It just makes the living room so much cozier! The rug easily becomes an anchor for the entire room. That’s more than the coffee table alone could do. Plus, it’s sized correctly. If the rug was too small, the couches would seem to overwhelm the space. There’s a fine balance for your design aesthetic. When you get it right, your buyers are sure to notice.


3. Furniture Placement


When staging a home, we want to organize furniture so that every room has a comfortable flow. No one wants to feel crowded or cramped as they walk through a home tour. Professional staging works to give your space a casual, open feel, which ends up making each room seem bigger.


A smart layout will also help define areas that feel a little tricky to navigate. For example, a lot of buyers are interested in open floorplans, but they aren’t quite sure how to arrange their own furniture to work with that architectural style. Staging makes it easier to imagine how you can live in a new space. The same goes for smaller rooms. When you work with a staging company that has a large inventory of furniture, you’ll be able to showcase each room with the appropriately-sized table, chairs, bed frame, and other item.


4. Tiny Details


If you really want to pique your buyers’ interest, you’ll want to add in a few accent pieces. When you’re getting ready to list, it’s better to stick with neutral design elements. Family photos or personal collections don’t send the right message. People touring your home want to envision how their own life might look at your address. Adding some plants, warm lighting, and playing with different materials (like a wire bowl and ceramic vases on this dresser) can make every room feel a little more fresh and modern.


5. Air Quality


Buyers typically focus on the visual aspects of a home, like the wall colors and high ceilings, or the different textures, like a brick fireplace or new carpeting. But impressing your buyers also means paying attention to their other senses. You might want to consider your air quality before scheduling a home tour. Musty smells or other lingering odors can be a big turn-off. Simply opening a few windows to get a fresh breeze can really help brighten up your home. You could also consider lighting a few candles with a subtle vanilla scent before a tour starts.


Giving a little extra attention to your home can show a variety of buyers that your property has just what they’ve been looking for. Tidying up and being smart about design helps set listings apart from the pack. From the online pictures to an in-person walk-though, incorporating any one of these “wow” factors can have a big impact on your sale!

How Much Does Professional Home Staging Cost?

Posted by admin under Home Staging Education

Staging your home gives potential buyers (or renters, for that matter) the chance to visualize each room as a livable, welcoming space. It’s hard to convey that feeling with plain walls and a bare open area. But what’s the real value of investing in professional staging? When you’re on the fence, it helps to know that you have options. Your home and budget can benefit from a couple of different setups.


Vacant Home Staging Benefits


Whether you’ve already moved all of your belongings and furniture out, or your place is brand-new, vacant home staging can be a fantastic choice for sellers and property managers. Your empty home needs some care to really attract the right buyers. It’s the same for buyers, renters, and apartments. Owners can always use professional staging as part of their marketing efforts. Pictures look so much better when you can create a little depth of field with furniture and accent pieces.


Not having a fridge hooked up could have easily turned this kitchen’s picture into something stark and empty. But when we turn on the lights and add in some modern barstools and plants for the countertop, we set up a bright, inviting scene. Good staging companies know how to maximize on the style of the existing space. That’s why we chose this type of seating. It’s a great complement to the different architectural textures.


Options with Partial Staging


Of course, you don’t need to go all-out and have an entire home staged. There are plenty of ways you can still get professional staging that honors your budget. Partial staging can work with items you already own. Your staging company will just reevaluate the furniture placement and add in great accessories and accent pieces to tie the room together. This is also called occupied home staging.


These types of arrangements should help you cut back on your spending while still giving your listing the polished look you want. Consulting with a designer can help you analyze your options. Some rooms might do better with extra attention. Take a look at the whole picture of your home to find the right balance for your investment. Then you’ll really be able to make the most of your home’s listing and sale.


What Staging Really Costs


The cost of staging varies based on your area, and even companies within the same zip code can have wildly different quotes. As with most home projects, though, you pay for what you get. An experienced team will rise about the competition. Checking out the portfolio of each staging company can usually give you a better idea of their quality of work. That, and your initial consultation, can help you decide whether you’ve found your fit. Personality definitely makes a difference with your designer!


Although you may be a little wary of the next steps with your listing, there are a handful of stats that prove staging is worth the investment. For starters, most real estate agents are big proponents of staging before putting a home on the market. Staging really moves properties, and having a solid collection of stunning photographs goes a long way for buyers. The fact that staged homes spend almost 75 percent less time on the market is certainly a big plus.


In addition to faster sales, professional staging can also help sellers get higher offers. One statistic shows that staged homes, on average, go for 6 percent more than the asking price. While this isn’t a guarantee, it’s an encouraging piece of information. Compare that with the overall home staging ROI. This boost in sales price can equate to an ROI of ten times your initial investment. What other home upgrades have that sort of track record?


Talking with your local home staging company can give you a better idea of the options you have with your own home. Whether you go for a vacant home staging or an occupied staging plan, you’re sure to get a good return on your investment!

Clean Homes Aren’t Enough for Buyers—Here’s Why

Posted by admin under Home Staging Education

Most buyers expect to see clean homes during their tours. And it would be hard to overlook a pile of dirty laundry on the floor or unwashed dishes in the sink! Yet all too often, sellers think that a clean house is enough to seal the deal for potential buyers. This simply isn’t true. When it comes to a real winner, you’ll need to show off more than dust-free bookshelves and vacuumed carpet. Homes that get offers at asking price—or higher—succeed because they put in extra effort.


Listing a Clean Home


Listing a clean home is a huge priority. No well-respected realtor would tell you otherwise. You make the beds, put the dishes away, and make sure there isn’t a trail of dirt in the entryway. These are some of the hard and fast rules when it comes to home listings. It also helps to tuck away any personal belongings. Even family photos can send the wrong message to buyers. Feeling like they’re touring someone else’s house, rather than their new, potential home can be distracting.


Getting rid of clutter is a great first step when getting ready to list a home. But a clean home is just the beginning. Sellers should understand that a clean home doesn’t attract the same attention as a staged home.


The Difference with Staging


Anyone can list a house that’s relatively clean. But tidying up only goes so far in the housing market. What’s considered “clean” by most people’s standards doesn’t feel the same when a house is up for sale. An organized closet, for example, might feel neat and tidy for the homeowner, yet a buyer might view it otherwise. A walk-in closet can suddenly seem cramped or crowded when full of clothes.


Professional staging helps home give the right impression. Instead of triggering subconscious signals that a room is too small or awkward, staging works to set a tone that’s welcoming. This goes beyond just being clean. Wiping down the counters in the kitchen won’t feel too special for a couple looking to buy. A bare room, although clean, feels more neglected than inviting. That’s why furniture and accent pieces help liven up a space. Strategically placing a few interesting objects in a room helps direct your eye to all of the room’s best features. This happens in the kitchen, as well as any bedroom or bathroom.


How Do You Know It’s Ready?


Cleanliness can be subjective, and staging can be, too. So how do you know whether your home is approved for a great showing? Well, it helps to study pictures of the home’s interior. Going with your gut reaction tends to be best. When you view photos of your home or another listing, do they look polished? Would you feel comfortable walking through the spaces, and do you think you could kick-back and relax?


For example, hanging artwork on the wall and filling a couch with pillows that have different textures and pops of color make your home’s photographs interesting and inviting. Buyers falls in love with homes through pictures even before they walk through the front door. Having a stager who knows how to style a home goes far beyond the basics of tidying up.


A professionally staged home speaks to you on an emotional level. Of course, you should also be able to look at it from a practical perspective. You can quickly tell if a home’s furnishings are outdated. Staging helps you avoid those pitfalls. A designer also works to place each item in a functional space so no room feels too crowded or empty. Everything has a purpose in staging. Whereas cleaning just gets rid of dust, dirt, and clutter, professional staging works to elevate a home by highlighting its best features. Instead of removing the negatives, staging adds some real positives to every room. While you need definitely need to clean for a great listing, staging is truly what sets homes apart!

What Professional Home Staging Says to Your Buyers

Posted by admin under Home Staging Education

Most buyers recognize that professional home staging helps give them the “warm and fuzzies” during a walk-through tour. Yet those feelings also translate into some powerful mental phrases. If you’re debating whether to stage your home, consider what kind of message you want your listing to communicate. A local home staging company can help make these types of statements really hit home for all of your potential buyers!


“This home totally matches your style.”


Professional Home Staging-Home Matters-1807Staging works wonders on buyers’ perception of your space because it’s meant to be simultaneously neutral, modern, and welcoming. It’s easier to visualize their own furniture in a room when they can already see a sleek layout design. This doesn’t happen with a blank canvas of empty rooms. Professional home stagers also know the value of using furniture and accents that match your home’s demographic. And by choosing pieces that amplify your home’s natural cozy vibe and accentuate its best features (like a gorgeous brick fireplace), you’re letting buyers know that their personal style will fit right in with your layout.


“You’ll have a great space for entertaining.”


Utilizing the right size of furniture in each room—and especially on the main level—also signals to buyers that your listing has a fantastic layout for hosting. Good stagers will work to remove any pieces that feel worn or outdated. This ensures that home is shown in its best light. Adjusting the furniture selection also helps make your home efficient for walkthrough tours. When guests see that it’s easy to move around your space, it’s only natural to start imagining how they can entertain for the holidays, summer cookouts, and other fun evenings with friends. A professionally staged home helps them paint all these scenarios in the mind’s eye!


“Every room has a functional purpose.”


Dining Room Staging-Home Matters-1807Not every couple or family is looking for a playroom or a four- or five-bedroom home, so how do you attract a wide range of potential buyers? A professional stager can help you maximize your home’s appeal by designating a specific theme to each of your rooms. Even if you don’t use that spare bedroom as a home office, staging it like one can help buyers imagine themselves working in that space. Or if you use the traditional dining room as the kids’ play area, a stager can help you widen the appeal by restoring it back to its original purpose.


“You can kick-back and relax here.”


It can be confusing for buyers to see a multi-purpose room full of the sellers’ movies, games, and pictures. While it feels like home to the owner, buyers see those types of personal items as a reminder that they’re in your house—not their potential home. Fortunately, staging helps you to eliminate that so-called clutter from their field of view. By streamlining each area down to the essentials, a home staging company can help you communicate a more effective “rest and relaxation” vibe to your potential buyers. A clean home full of comfy furniture and attractive décor goes a long way to elevate your listing.


“There’s plenty of space—and nothing wasted.”


When couches and end tables are too big or in a living room, you end up feeling cramped. A similar problem occurs when items are too small, though. You don’t want potential buyers feeling like they’re walking through wasted space when a large master bedroom is one of the highlights of your home! Working with a professional staging company helps you avoid these common pitfalls in all your major rooms. They can even help you figure out what to do with that awkward corner in your entryway or the landing at the top of your stairs. That way, everywhere you look, things feel right in place.


“You’ve found a home that’s move-in ready.”


Living Room Home Staging-Home Matters-1807The last thing that staging communicates to your list of potential buyers is almost the most important. Assuming you’ve done your due diligence and cleaned up your home and made other minor repairs, the staging is going to subtly shout, “I’m move-in ready!” to eager buyers. If you’ve got great pictures of your listing and the walk-through is calm and welcoming at every turn, the staging work is sure to pay off. It’s hard to resist a house that already feels like home. When you hit all the marks, you can be sure to expect the buyers’ offers to start rolling in!


Home Matters Professional Staging


When the home-buying market is hot, you want a way to help you listing rise about the crowd. Staging your home is a great way to distinguish it from the other homes for sale in your area. Not only does it give your property some great opportunities for attractive listing pictures, home staging also whispers helpful phrases to your buyers all throughout their decision-making process.


If you’re ready to give your listing the attention it deserves, contact Home Matters! Our team of experienced designers would love to help you make your home the star of the show. With a variety of Indianapolis and Carmel home staging packages to choose from, we’ll help you lock down your ideal asking price. Show buyers the true potential of your layout. Contact us today to learn more, or visit our Services page for additional details. We hope to hear from you soon!

Our Favorite Home Staging Accessories

Posted by admin under Home Design, Home Staging Education

In the wintertime, there really is no place like home. Gathering with loved ones in the living room and teaming up in the kitchen seems to happen more this time of year than any other season. As we reflect on the past year, it’s also the perfect time to consider making some changes to your home design. A little extra love for your home might be just the thing to ring in the new year!


Ultimately, the best accessory for your home staging project is whatever can help draw attention to your home’s best features. When those areas are styled right, you’ll get something truly extraordinary. Enjoy everything your space has to offer with these smart home design tips.


1. Throw Pillows


Adding a few more pillows to your couch, master bedroom, or favorite armchair can do wonders for your home décor. Pillows are all about quick customization and relaxation, so they can be a great place to start if you don’t want to commit to a big purchase. Sinking in to a pile of comfy pillows—or even just looking at them—is sure to help set your mind at ease. (The perfect thing for busy holidays!)


Throw Pillow Staging-Home Matters 1712We especially like throw pillows that are seasonal. Think fun floral patterns for spring and rich velvets for winter. Swapping out your pillows to give a nod to the season makes it easy to keep things fresh and inviting. This is where it’s really fun to play with color, size, and texture. Don’t be afraid to mix-and-match your pillow collection. Having a variety helps keep things interesting for you and your guests. Everyone will feel like your space is really in style when you rotate your decorative pillows throughout the year.


2. Items of Interest


Clutter is a big no-no for a thoughtfully designed room. When it comes to big bookshelves in your great room or home office, less is more. A good rule of thumb is to display your favorite items. And if you’re looking to stage your home for a speedy sale, pack up all your books, movies, and personal items. Then your shelving will look even more spacious, which in turn, helps the room feel bigger, too!


Bookshelf Staging-Home Matters-Fav 1712When we choose items for a fireplace mantel or shelving, we like to look for decorative glassware. Like pillows, it helps to pick pieces that have contrasting heights and complimentary colors. Displaying these items in small clusters helps draw the eye in without seeming overwhelming. The same applies for coffee tables and sideboards. Adding a white pillar candle or two (or mini table-top plants) can often tie the area together. There’s nothing wrong with trying out different displays to find the best look. If the display feels clean and simple, you’re definitely on the right track.


3. Area Rugs


Hardwood flooring is a favorite statement feature for lots of designers. In some rooms, though, it makes sense to layer your flooring with an equally impressive area rug. When rugs are sized appropriately, they work to define a space and ground larger pieces of furniture. Placing a cute rug in a nook or loft area lets guests (and you) know that no corner is “off limits” for lounging.


Area Rugs-Home Matters-Fav 1712When you find a pattern that you love, be sure to confirm that the rug’s size is perfect for your space. With this quick design upgrade, you’ll help set the mood in key areas of your home. Cozy seating areas are great for entertaining, or quiet afternoons with a book. Without a rug to ground these spaces, you might be letting key square footage go unused. Giving care and attention to every part of your home lets you maximize your lifestyle. Plus, it signals to guests that they don’t have to stay in the living room or kitchen. Small groups can easily split off to chat in more intimate settings.


Home Matters Professional Design


It doesn’t take much to make your house a home, but a little design sense will help make your space truly one of a kind. Whether that’s an area rug, new pillows, or a streamlined look at your shelving, little upgrades can make a huge impact. We hope you can use these tips for your own home in the coming new year!


If you need help finding the right look for your home, our team of designers is just a phone call away! We love helping homeowners create the perfect settings in all of their rooms. With one of our design consultations or a complete plan for designing your home, we’ll help you fall in love with your home all over again! Give us a call at (317)-774-7025 or send us a message to get started. Happy New Year from all of us at Home Matters!