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Setting the stage for buyers can take a month

Setting the stage for buyers can take a month

I recently read that 25 percent of homes for sale in Orange County today have been staged. This is up from a reported 5 percent of homes that were staged in 2007.

What an amazing increase in an effective marketing tactic adopted by home sellers interested in achieving better results than their competition.

With this craze for staging comes a variety of scheduling challenges for home sellers, Realtors, moving crews and home stagers themselves. So here’s the current reality for home sellers committed to staging as their marketing trump card.

Planning ahead is required to make the most of home staging when you’re in the busy spring homebuying season, which is now.

Many high-demand home staging outfits are booked two or more weeks in advance for an initial consultation. Home sellers, and their agents, have to plan in advance as well. It is simple, really. Just look at the calendar.

The time clock starts the day you decide you’re ready to sell your home. Depending on your own unique circumstances, it will take from two to four weeks to complete the staging process and the professional photos.

Here’s a breakdown.

First, it may take a week to get the stager in to look at your house and give you a consultation – including your staging options, their pricing, and the projects you must tackle to get your house ready for her to stage.

Then, add one to three days more for the home staging professional to pull their inventory they have designated for your project and shop for new items specific to you.

The moving crew needs three to five day lead time to schedule the pickup and delivery of the staging items. That puts you out to the two week mark.

If the stager includes a quote for the de-cluttering and organizing part of the staging project, then add three to five days to the total time lapsed from your decision day.

Yes, she will come to your house and clear out every un-staging friendly piece of furniture, ceramic collectable, miss-matched piece of art work, un-color pallet friendly accessory, and any unnecessary reading material, decoration, beauty treatment product, trash receptacle, or plant that is currently taking up valuable space in your house. And anything else she deems distracting or uncomplimentary to the staging efforts. Buy very large trash bags. Consider ordering a dumpster.

Add another day or two, at least, for photos taken by a professional, whose schedules are also very busy. Thank goodness your agent is experienced in this process and already has the professional real estate photographer scheduled to be on hand as soon as the staging is complete.

This means you are at least two more business days away from going live on the multiple listing service. This gives the photographer time to process the pics and your agent time to upload them into your listing.

Now you’re ready for your debut on a million websites.

Leslie Sargent Eskildsen is an Orange County real estate agent. She can be reached at 949-678-3373 or leslie@leslieeskildsen.com. Her website is leslieeskildsen.com.

The Orange County Register – News Headlines : Real Estate News