It might not sound difficult — in theory — to declutter and depersonalize your house, but for many homeowners it proves to be a challenge.
“The seller has to realize it’s not their house anymore,” says Karen Linder, owner of Karen Linder Interior Designs in Portland, Oregon. “I have to remove their personality from the house so potential buyers can visualize themselves living there.”
Linder says she charges around $400 for three hours of staging. If the home is vacant and she needs to rent furniture, that can cost the homeowner between $200 and $400 a month, depending on the size of the home.
“A homeowner is emotional and they’re personally tied to that house,” she says. “By hiring someone to clear out the clutter and stage it, they don’t have to be emotionally tied to it.”
Maintaining sensitivity toward the home seller, while trying to prepare the house for a quick-paced real estate market is a delicate balance.
“My suggestions are usually very cost-effective,” says Sue Hunter, owner of Home For a Change in Minnetonka, Minnesota. “Tasks such as pre-packing, rearranging furniture, replacing dated window panels, new towels in the bath, fresh flowers, or a glass vase filled with lemons, are all inexpensive ideas to create a soothing and comfortable space so the future homeowner can envision themselves living there.”
Hunter says she charges $125 an hour for home staging consultation.
“Home staging has become an important part of selling your home,” she says. “Real estate agents have realized that a well-staged home results in a quicker sale.”
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