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Should you stage an empty property?

  05 Jul 2019

Theresa May brought the issue of home staging into the spotlight in June, criticising developers who filled their show homes with ‘deceptively small furniture’. Putting aside the size of sofas and single beds, the Prime Minister got Jezzards thinking about staging empty properties, whether they’re for sale, to let or newly built.

What is home staging?

Staging means adding furniture and accessories to a vacant property to give an idea of what the property would look and feel like once full. In re-sales and lettings, staging can bring life to a barren property and in new homes, staging is the backbone of a show house – designed to sell an aspirational lifestyle.

When to stage your property

Home staging can be considered at two points during the marketing of a property. If your property is vacant, staging it before photographs, brochures and virtual tours are produced is sensible as it will produce the best aesthetic (Jezzards offers all of these presentation options). Staging can also inject personality into an empty property that has remained on the market for some time without an offer.

 Quantified: the value of home staging

The Home Staging Association conducted a survey among property professionals in 2018 and found that 70% of estate agents said a dressed property increased the offer value somewhere between 3-6%. Home staging company Roomservice by CORT echoed this point, with its own analysis revealing a property can achieve, on average, a sale price of around 6% higher if it is dressed than if it is empty.

Victoria Jezzard of Jezzards adds: “While research has shown that home staging can increase the value of a property, our experience also shows that staging encourages a quicker house sale or let.”

Firing the imagination

While some people can look at a floorplan or photos of an empty property and see in their mind’s eye how things would fit and feel, most people need a tangible guide of how rooms will look with items of furniture in.  Home staging provides a sense of encouragement; many clients fall in love with a styled property and then plan similar themselves once they move in.

Home staging – not just for high-end luxury homes

There are several ways to achieve home staging results, and not all of them will break the bank or leave you with unwanted items.  There are many furniture companies who rent furniture packs for a limited period of time, or you can pursue the ‘cosmetic dressing and finishing touches’ route, where you work with your existing furniture but elevate the style with soft furnishings, flowers and accessories that are used as props.

It is important to be mindful not to mislead the buyer or tenant, referring back to Theresa May’s recent comment. Use full size furniture and if space is at a premium remember less is always more.

If you would like professional advice on whether to stage a vacant property or not – or for advice on which items to add to an empty space – please contact Jezzards today on 03330 433 633.


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