Look around your neighborhood. How many houses are for sale? If you live in a typical Michigan neighborhood, the answer is “a boatload.” A good percentage of those houses are vacant, meaning the owners have moved out already and taken all of their furniture with them. What remains is the shell of what was once a home. Only floors, walls and windows. No warmth or charm. No ambiance. Nothing to grab the buyer. The house is naked, and invites brutal scrutiny.Statistics prove that a vacant house takes much longer to sell than a furnished house. Oftentimes, moving out before the house is sold is unavoidable, and it is impossible for the homeowner to leave furniture behind. This is an example of when hiring a home stager is vital. The home stager will fill the house with life, and turn it back into a “home” that people will want to buy.
Here are the facts about vacant properties:
1. A Vacant House Has No Soul
In the real estate industry, we speak of the almighty “first impression.” Most houses are sold because the buyer felt an immediate connection with the house, and words such as “warm”, “inviting”, and “cozy” are used to describe the property. The house embraces the buyer and they instantly feel at home.
A vacant house feels cold and sterile. Voices echo in the hollow spaces. There is no energy in the rooms. It’s very difficult to bond with a house that gives off negative vibes.
2. People Only Know What They See…
…and what they see may be confusing.
Sometimes it will be hard to ascertain the room’s intended function. With non-traditional floor plans for example, it may be difficult to distinguish the living room from the dining room. Is this extra room big enough to be a bedroom, or was it designed to be an office?
People often erroneously believe that an empty house seems larger. This belief, however, can prevent a quick sale. With an empty room, buyers are often unable to estimate the size and scale of a room, and may be unable to visualize if and how their belongings will work. How will they arrange their furniture? Will their king-size bed fit in the master bedroom? Is there room for a table and chairs to fulfill the need for an eat-in kitchen?
If the buyer has any questions at all about the house, they are unlikely to purchase it. We need to do the work for them and leave no doubt in their mind. Properly scaled furniture strategically placed by a home stager will show the property’s true potential.
3. Even the Minor Flaws Are Magnified
With nothing else to look at, the buyer’s gaze will automatically fall to the obvious seam in the berber or the splotch of paint on the window frame. They will be distracted by scuffed floors or odd paint colors. The view of the neighbor’s shed will be the focal point, not the lovely bay window. Every inch of the naked house will be scrutinized.
Staging the house will direct the buyer’s attention where it should be….the architectural details, focal points of the room and the flow between rooms.
4. Paying Two Mortgages Can Break the Bank
If a house is vacant, obviously the owner is now living somewhere else, paying the expenses of the new residence. Yikes! Unless they’ve hit the lottery, paying two mortgages can drain a bank account in a hurry! I can’t think of a bigger waste of money than paying for a house that no one is living in. Along with the monetary challenge, there is also the stress of keeping the unsold house in good condition for showing
Yes, there are fees involved with staging a vacant house. Furniture and accessories will need to be rented. The home stager commands an additional fee. But it is truly an investment in the sale of the house. The ROI of getting out from under the mortgage and maintenance fees of an unlived-in house is well worth it.
[tags]michigan home staging, metro detroit staging[/tags]