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Norma Walton’s staging tips - creating environment for buyers

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Selling a home can be an arduous process.  From choosing how to list your home to ensuring the house is up to code, there seems to be a million little things that need to be completed before any prospective buyer ever sets foot in your home. With that being said, many first-time home sellers often overlook the importance of making a home truly ready to be shown. They focus on the selling features and forget that part of the buying experience entails creating an image and a setting.  

Home staging is a crucial aspect to preparing your home to be sold. Large vacant spaces, no matter how pristine and impressive, can feel overwhelming, leaving prospective buyers with the impression that the space is cold and uninviting.

“It is estimated that 90 percent of buyers have difficulty picturing themselves in a new home, which is a contributing factor in the decision making during the homeownership process,” writes Robert Northfield of Village Green, a United States based real estate firm.

Strategic home staging not only creates a warm and inviting home, it makes your space memorable. A buyer is more likely to remember a home that had a unique vase or colour scheme than a blank canvas, unstaged home. A 2015 report released by the National Realtor Association (NRA) found that more than 81 percent of the prospective home buyers, “find it easier to visualize the property as their future home when it is staged.” The detailed report also found that over 95 percent of buyer’s agents say “home staging has at least some effect on the buyer’s view of the home.”

The rise of digital technology has been a great tool in showcasing homes and researching what areas people would like to live in. At the same time, it’s also increased the importance of staging. Virtual tours can showcase your home to dozens of buyers, but if your home is unappealing, the virtual tour will leave them unimpressed. A poll conducted by a Toronto staging company found that 93 percent of respondents believe, “a home that looks great in photos and shows well has the potential to sell for a higher price.”

As Toronto real estate expert Norma Walton pointed out, they are exactly right. “Staging a home and doing it intelligently can bring in anywhere from 10 to 20 percent above asking price,” Norma Walton explained.

Walton offers some guidance for those wanting to avoid the cost of a professional and stage their residence on their own. “I advise using light coloured painting options.  Beige, cream and taupe can make a room feel open while also adding warmth,” says Norma Walton.

She also urges home sellers to de-clutter.  Reducing the amount of pieces in a room not only helps the buyer see the space’s potential, it will reduce moving costs when you sell and have to move on.

Adding fresh flowers to room can add to its viewing potential. Mirrors are also an addition that can trick the eye into believing a smaller room is much larger.

Home staging doesn’t have to cost a lot.  Some planning and research can help you stage any room on a budget. Being strategic about how and what you stage will ensure that you maximize each dollar you spend.

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