Setting the stage for a quick sell


If you are a seller getting ready to put your house on the market, have you considered how to stage the property to attract online buyers?  
According to the National Association of Realtors’ new 2015 profile on home staging, 81 percent of respondents say a staged house is easier to visualize as a future home; 46 percent say they are more willing to walk through a home they viewed online; and 28 percent say they are more willing to overlook other faults with the property.

While staging can help attract prospective buyers, Realtors say it can also bring in more money. The report found that Realtors believe staging increases a buyer’s perceived value of a home from 1 percent to 5 percent, according to 37 percent of Realtors representing sellers and 32 percent of Realtors representing buyers.  
The top four most important rooms to be staged include the living room, kitchen, master bedroom and dining room.
Staging and decluttering will assist in getting your home sold, but it is also important that you secure your home for the selling process — after all, strangers will be walking through your home.  
Realtors do everything possible to interview prospective buyers and take all precautions, but you can help to elevate temptation.  Sellers should hide or remove any valuables, including jewelry, crystal, art and credit cards.   
Prescription drugs should also be removed or put into a locked location. Don’t leave personal information like mail or bills out in the open where anyone can see it. Be sure to lock down your computer, laptop and/or tablets and remove easy-to-pocket electronics.   
Sellers should not show their homes by themselves, and children should be reminded not to talk to strangers who might approach them about the house. The selling process can be stressful for your pets, too, as people come in and out of their “territory.” If possible, animals should be removed during showings.
Work with your Realtor to prepare your home to safely sell, stage and close your property.  
If you are buying or selling, be sure to ask if your agent is a Realtor and a member of the Hilton Head Area Association of Realtors.
Jean Beck is the executive vice president of the Hilton Head Area Association of Realtors.