Have Questions?

Here are a few FAQs that will help get you started. If you have additional questions not answered here, just get in touch with Mary Ann and let her know!

I’m not sure if I need a professional stager or not. I’m thinking maybe I can do this myself. What can you bring to the table that I might be overlooking?

I get this a lot. Design is a very subjective, personal thing. Many homeowners overlook the obvious when trying to get a home ready for sale. I think this is because, all too often, people just become immune to certain things because they’ve been living there day in and day out. I can serve as a “subjective eye.” What some call “a collection” others call “clutter”! Even personal family pictures are a major deterrent to homebuyers.

My best response is that an objective third eye really helps SELL THE PROPERTY! I take out emotion and put in savvy real estate knowledge. Remember, ASP Certified professionally staged homes sell on a conservative average for 10%+ more in a good market. If your home sold for 400K unstaged it probably would have sold for 440K staged.

How is home staging different than interior design? I’m not sure what I need.

Just by the very nature of each description, professional stagers typically cost much less than interior designers because the objective is to SELL the property. Therefore, less face-time is needed with the client simply because the objective is NOT to understand likes and dislikes—it’s merely to create a pleasant, inviting space where potential buyers can imagine themselves and their family living there.

Pretty sure my home requires staging but how do I determine what Package type I need?

Good question. Let’s talk about it. Usually the initial consult will uncover the answer.

What do you do with all of the stuff you bought specifically for staging purposes?

At project completion, all of the merchandise I’ve purchased on your behalf is yours. Many of my clients fall in love with new purchases and opt to bring these new obsessions to their new home. New merchandise can be returned, kept, or donated—it’s totally up to you. I hang onto all of the receipts and packaging. Sometimes I “borrow” from my own personal stash to achieve a specific effect. Then I just reclaim the item/s post-sale.

What if I need to hire someone to resand my hardwood floors based on your recommendation? Do I sign a contract with them separately?

In short, yes. I provide recommendations and advise on timing, as well. In many ways, I am a project manager of sorts. Locally, I have a best-practices team of professionals standing by to collaboratively facilitate the entire process and deliver the home ready for market. This is key. I can coordinate a comprehensive and detailed plan to de-clutter, paint, repair, update, and, ultimately, sell the property. This convenience gives you, the seller, less details to worry about and, hopefully, less stress to manage while you’re busy with other things.

Do you sometimes recommend renting furniture to stage a property?

Well, sometimes, but I don’t like to make a habit of this. I do not warehouse pieces of furniture, but I have negotiated some pretty great deals from furniture rental companies on behalf of my clients. Truth be told, this practice is not something I do often as I really like to leverage my client’s furniture and try rearranging, switching out hardware, or just polishing! The fewer people in the mix, the fewer complexities. Renting furniture is typically a last-resort option.

Do you sometimes recommend storing my things off-site?

It depends. Some areas have extremely low rates and very good introductory offers. I don’t OWN a storage locker outright for my clients to use, but I will suggest or recommend local storage facilitaties if it’s needed. Another option is selling items or donating them, but if they can’t be parted with then we need to seek other solutions. Most often, I will suggest storing keepsake items, family heirlooms, or large, personal collections that can’t be ‘hidden,’ elsewhere. Once, as an example, I stored a (somewhat dated) kitchen island because it truly made the space look smaller. I knew it would be opened up and more pleasing to the eye if was removed.

How long does home staging usually take and can I live in my home while you stage it?

Good questions! Depending on size of the project, it can take anywhere from one to three days. Typically, I prefer the property to be vacated because I find that things move along quicker that way. Often our team works long hours just to complete a project so that we can snap some photos and disperse the images to the buyer audience. While fleeing a home for a few days could be considered an inconvenience, most clients really value the full effect of the Before & After photos and want to get these images up quickly. Of course, if leaving the home just isn’t a possibility, then I will be sure to work collaboratively to ensure that I am not too intrusive!

How much am I involved in the overall staging process?

Most of my clients are not involved at all. Because my job is to stage a home for a potential buyer (and not design it based on your likes and dislikes), I work very diligently and focus on project completion which means very little back and forth with my clients. The exception to this is if I need to be concerned with a family’s comings and goings during the day while they are still living in the house and while work is being done. I’m always mindful of how my clients move throughout the day and try not to be too invasive.

What are the top 10 reasons I should stage my home?

10. If you don’t stage, you’re actually helping that house down the street to sell before yours—yikes! It’s all about the photos, and professional staging yields the best pics.

9. Most agents consider it a “must.” According to a recent Zillow survey, savvy real estate professionals know a staged home will sell faster and at a higher asking price.

8. You can chill. You won’t be leaving any money on the table. You can sleep at night knowing you’re doing all you can to fetch top dollar in a competitive and crowded market.

7. Interior eyesores can be de-emphasized to the point of almost vanishing. Many buyers will overlook interior flaws (floor scuffs) opting instead to rest eyes on more aesthetically pleasing items (gorgeous light fixtures). In other words, the art of strategic distraction can ‘erase’ blemishes.

6. You may be too close to the trees to see the ‘cluttered’ forest. You may adore your family photos in expensive frames but your homebuyer doesn’t.

5. You’re gonna break the Internet. Yep, visually arresting photos are the name of the game. Studies show that 95% of all homebuyers are browsing photos (many on their smart phone) before they take any sort of action.

4. You will have 81% of buyers loving you and your space Yep, that’s the percentage of folks who said it was easier to visualize themselves living in a staged home.

3. Get that SOLD sign on your lawn faster! BAM—and that’s all she wrote. Sell it faster! Staged homes spend 72% less time on the market.

2. The cost of staging could cost less than running ongoing classified ads in your local paper. Really! You do the math! When a savvy seller spends an average of only 1% of the value of their home on staging, they see an average of a 1000% ROI. Whoa.

1. Friend, you will make a ton more money. In a survey of over 3,500 homes that were professionally staged, over 50% sold for 10% MORE than their un-staged neighbor’s home! I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want to be that 3,501st homeowner!

I’m on the fence about staging. Why should I select you?

Well, at the end of the day, the cost of staging is less than the first price reduction! I think that’s a really good reason. I am proud to provide my clients with a high value services. The process is seamless. I take pride in “having my clients’ backs.” Read some testimonials here.

I need the “Cliff Notes” on your pricing. Help!

Sure! The initial consultation is $150. At that time, we discuss what needs to be accomplished for an optimum outcome. Once we agree on a plan, you should figure approximately 1% of the sales price for the execution.

Have a new submission for an FAQ?

Send your question for this FAQ page to maryann@foxstaging.com. You can also follow Mary Ann on Instagram (@FoxFaves) to see what’s trending as her new Favorite Things!