How can I Sell Faster and For More Money?

How can I Sell Faster and For More Money?

When I bring up staging suggestions in a consultation with sellers, they tend to be concerned about the cost and often ask “Is staging really worth the money and time?”

According to the National Association of Realtors, for every $100 invested in staging, the potential return is $400 . Compare that to the average sale price, which is a reduction of 10-20% from asking. So an average home with a $400,000 asking price will be reduced by $40,000 to $80,000.

A staged home will sell for 17% more on average than a non-staged home, and 95% of staged homes sell in 11 days or less. That is statistically 87% faster than non-staged homes.

Staging can save you from costly price reductions!


One of the hardest things to do is to get out of your own habits and preferences and into the mindset of a buyer seeing the home in person or on the Internet for the first time. Maybe the TV has always been the focal point for the living room, for example, but for a buyer, the fireplace would need to be highlighted. 

How Home Staging Works

Home staging is considered a marketing technique that turns the home into something that will appeal to the greatest common denominator or buyers so it will sell quickly. This involves ‘neutralizing’ the home and portraying a lifestyle that buyers want to have. So even though you may love your beautiful and expensive clown collection, not everyone else will, and it can have a negative psychological effect on a potential buyer. 

Stagers will use specific techniques to highlight the home’s architectural features, and make rooms feel large and inviting.  The stager will also take into account the target market for the home: Spaces designed for young singles, empty-nesters and families will all look different.

A stager will do a walk-through and make recommendations on which existing pieces in the home will be assets and which should be removed, and come up with a list of high, medium and low budget options for re-design. Stagers will bring in some of their own pieces, or rent them. When we are getting ready to sell, we want to rearrange that so the room is balanced and furniture is not blocking pathways, windows or great features of the home.


7 Professional Staging Tips To Help Your Home Sell Faster, For More Money

  1. Remove clutter: Clutter makes people feel uncomfortable. Suffocated even. 
  2. Remove personal items: All personal pictures, family plaques, framed certificates with names on them, etc., should be packed.
  3. Never put an empty home on the market:  When rooms are unfurnished they actually feel smaller than they are; so a buyer might be unsure how to position furniture or if their current furniture will fit.  Buyers also notice more flaws when a home is vacant and might incorrectly assume a home needs a lot of work when it really needs minimal cosmetic updating. Finally, a vacant property can give buyers the impression a seller has already moved on and this can come off as desperate, which could result in lower offers. 
  4. Keep décor neutral: Neutral does not mean boring, but it does mean staying away from shocking colors, and even avoiding all-beige walls. 
  5. Don’t remodel before you sell: You may think you have great taste in kitchens, but the new owner may not agree. It’s better to spend the money doing cosmetic fixes than worrying about getting the full return on the investment of an extensive remodel.
  6. Avoid divisive décor: When staging an occupied home we are always careful to remove religious and political items, as well as any other items that might be offensive.
  7. Stay timeless: It’s good to be “on trend” with pops of color in, say, pillows and curtains, but avoid anything that’s too trendy. A stager can help draw the line.

You might also be wondering How Does A CMA Help Sell Your Home?

What staging to-do list can a seller expect?

Here is an example of things that usually need to be done when a seller has been in a home for 20+ years and recent updates haven’t been performed.

  • Update flooring
  • Paint interior walls, front door and trim
  • Replace/remove window coverings
  • Update the plumbing and light fixtures
  • Groom the landscaping for added curb appeal
  • Use new furniture, art, plants and accessories

Want a free staging consultation? List your home for sale with Sarah Marrinan!

Ready to read more? Staging to Sell Through Targeting



On another note…Homeowners have equity, rates are low… those are awesome selling conditions! 94% of Minnesotans Have Equity in Their Home!

Are you part of the 94%? 

According to the CoreLogic Equity Report for Q4 2015, about 93.9% of MN (and 90.9% of WI) homeowner have equity in their homes!

Nationally, the number of negative equity homes has shrunk from 10.5M to 4.3M.

This means more sellers can finally afford to move!

With ongoing low interest rates, buyers can afford more home now than they could with higher rates.

This means that NOW is a great time to sell!


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