How Staging Has Changed During The Pandemic
Buyers' needs are changing as the quarantine continues on. While the core tenets of staging have not changed, we are adapting how we stage to better meet your buyers' needs.
Below are six ways we've adjusted our approach to staging:
1. Demonstrate size and scale.
Photos and virtual tours are driving buying decisions. As buyers typically struggle to judge dimensions from pictures and virtual tours, it's even more important to place furniture in each room to show size.
2. Show all usable space.
Buyers are asking themselves, "Is this a home I'd want to be quarantined in?" What that means: where before, we might have been able to stage key rooms, now we are staging all rooms in the home to demonstrate how every space can be used. That includes showing how rooms can be dual-purposed: a bedroom and a reading area, a child's bedroom and a learning space, or a space for relaxation and for more active family activities.
3. Focus on the functionality of the kitchen.
With families preparing and eating more meals at home, the kitchen is being scrutinized with care. Potential buyers are evaluating storage space, food prep areas, and even the size and quality of appliances. Before, a dated refrigerator or dishwasher might have been updated with a stainless steel model. Now, a larger, higher-quality appliance may be a better idea.
4. Bring in the light.
When conducting virtual staging, my advice to sellers is "if in doubt, add more light." Buyers are more conscious of how their home environment will affect their mood, motivation, and overall happiness. An abundance of outdoor light (open those shades!) and well-lit rooms, right down to the last corner, help convey a brighter, more cheerful space.
5. Highlight outdoor living spaces.
We are spending more time staging the front porch and entrance. If there is the possibility of adding outdoor furniture, just add it in. We are highlighting balconies and decks, to show that even as families stay in and on the property, they too can enjoy fresh air and being outdoors.
6. Maintain and clean.
Buyers are choosing spotless, well-maintained homes that are move-in ready. Fewer buyers appear to be interested in the idea of contractors traipsing in and out. An impeccably cleaned and maintained home will command a higher price and sell faster. This goes hand in hand with energy-efficient windows - no one wants to imagine being shut inside and dealing with cold drafts or difficulty balancing the temperature.
Buyers' demands are changing in these challenging times. If you have an upcoming listing, or you're not sure why your listing hasn't sold, please contact me. Let's discuss what we can do differently to maximize your listing's appeal and get that contract signed.