Many of us have bought or sold a home that has been nicely staged, in which a seller brings in new, sometimes expensive, furniture and decor on a temporary basis in order to cast their home in the best possible light.
Does home staging really work? Will it help a home sell more quickly or at a higher price?
Most Realtors believe staging works. However, independent research on the subject is hard to find, and the available evidence is inconclusive.
In many cases, sellers just need to make cosmetic changes to their home before it is listed. This can include everything from removing clutter to hiding excess furniture to replacing personal artifacts and can extend to repainting the walls.
It is somewhat clear, that a cluttered home is not only unattractive, but could be interpreted as a signal of inattention to house maintenance on the part of the owner. Simply put - buyers are attracted to neatness, and simply cleaning up a home, display pride of ownership will almost always sell the home more quickly, and for more money.
A full staging involves replacing the owner's furniture with rented items while the home is listed, with the living room, kitchen and master bedroom the most likely to be upgraded.
Staging can last from a minimum of 2 months up to 6 months or longer for expensive homes, with costs ranging from $2,000 to $10,000 per month, depending on how extensive the changes are.
While a full staging, no doubt enables a home to show at it's very best, it is unclear that the added expense will net out a higher dollar volume for the seller.