Weak Housing Market Has Slowed Business

February 29, 2008 8:24:46 PM PST
With so many homes on the market sellers are looking for ways to make their house stand out from the rest.There's a small group of Valley professionals whose job it is to make your home seem more appealing.

But they say, not many folks are taking advantage of their expertise.

They're unloading the trailer and rolling in the bins, but this is not move-in day.

Tom and Joy McGuire are home stagers and this furniture, plants and pictures are all props they hope will help this home sell.

Tom McGuire: "It's better if you do it right away before you put it on the market that way you are doing a good start."

The owners of this property in Ivanhoe just hired the couple to make the empty house look warmer, more inviting but the weak housing market has slowed business.

"In the later part of 2007 I think it started slowing a little bit, I think people were waiting to see what was going to happen."

McGuire says staged homes generally sell faster and for more money but many in the Valley are still hesitant.

"I think we are always just a little bit behind here, but I think it's going to catch on."

Sandra Walden is a Home Stager and Real Estate Agent, every home she lists is staged to some degree.

Sandra Walden: "That's because it's part of my marketing plan, I stress to my sellers how important it is to implement staging."

Still, this 25-hundred square foot home on the Belmont Country Club has been a tough sell on the market since August. The owners had it staged 2 months ago but may now put it up for rent.

"I think people are scrambling there is a lot of inventory out there so it's really important to make your property stand out."

Because full-staging can cost anywhere from $700 to $12-hundred dollars a month many of Walden's clients simply pay for a consultation.

"We will tell them what kind of key pieces to keep in the home what kind of paint to buy and carpeting so that we give it a neutral effect and attract every potential buyer that comes through the door."

Back in Ivanhoe the McGuire's have quickly transformed this kitchen nook into a Tuscan-style dining area they hope will invoke visions of warm family dinners at their client's first open house.

Stagers say it may cost you less in the long run to stage your home before putting it on the market.

It could sell faster maybe before you have to drop the price.


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