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"I would never consider putting a home on the market without staging. I would never consider using anyone but Dwelling Makeover to stage my homes."

~Joanne C,
Real Estate Investor

"I have been using Catherine to stage my homes since 1998. She has the unique ability to see a home from the buyer’s perspective. Her homes sell faster and attract more buyers."

~Michael R,

>View More Testimonials

Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

1) What is Home Staging?
2) Can't you just clean, paint and add new carpet?
3) What are the benefits of Staging?
4) Do you stage the exterior of the house?
5) Can people learn Staging from a book or an online course?
6) Is it fair to compare Staging training with becoming a full service Interior Designer?
7) Can you work with any budget?

Questions for Specific Types of Property

1) Can I Stage my home if it is listed with a Realtor?
2) Do you recommend Staging a vacant property?
3) Should you Stage a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) property?
4) Should you Stage a rental property?

General Questions

1.  What is Home Staging?

Home staging is a process of simple steps to make your home show like a model without spending a lot of money. This can involve anything from removing clutter, re-arranging furnishings and in some cases re-design, to ensure that the house creates a great first impression and helps buyers to feel that they could really live there.  It is designed to appeal to the broadest range of buyers.

Unlike interior design, which reflects the owner’s taste, home staging neutralizes the owner’s style as much as possible.  The result will lead the buyer through the house so that the eye is directed to the home’s architectural features, not to the owner’s belongings.  It is important to note that the way you live in a home and the way you market a home are two different things.

Staging uses as much of the seller’s own furnishings as possible to keep costs down. The investment in staging is always less expensive than your first price reduction.


2.  Can't you just clean, paint and add new carpet?  

To clean, paint and add new carpet to a home is the only the beginning. It lays the ground work but you still have to set the stage and create emotion. Although carpet is nice, it elicits no emotion. You want your prospective buyer or renter to stop and feel as though they just walked up the path to their very own home. Staging is creating. You have to create some emotion by appealing to the potential home buyer’s senses.


3.  What are the benefits of Staging?  

    Your home will look better than competing homes for sale

    Your home will sell faster

    Your home will sell for more money

    Realtors recognize staged homes as the best properties to show

    Photos look better in print and on the internet

    Your home will be viewed by buyers, building inspectors, and appraisers as a           home that has been well taken care of and is more likely to appraise at full             value

    Staging your home will allow buyers to mentally move into your home and              visualize living there

    Your staged home will have a huge edge over the competition


4.  Do you stage the exterior of the house?  

Yes, the exterior of the home is the first thing you will do to a property, and is often the first and last impression you leave. We stage your home from the outside in, beginning with curb appeal. Creating curb appeal must be included into your budget. 

You need to welcome prospective buyers by appealing to their senses and emotions.  For expamle, you can have fragrant flowers or plants that appeal to their sense of smell or the sound of trickling water from a fountain to appeal to their sense of sound. All of these suggestions require minimal budget and create maximum impact!


Can people learn Staging from a book or an online course?  

Absolutely! Every year there are more and more classes going online. The students benefit in a multitude of ways, such as lower fees, total flexibility, total convenience, the ability to work at their own pace, the ability to get a 1:1 student/teacher ratio. 

Home Staging and Interior Redesign is being taught very effectively online as our many students will attest to.  So don't let anyone try to convince you that it isn't effective. It most certainly is effective - and best of all it's the most affordable way to learn too.


6.  Is it fair to compare Staging training with becoming a full service interior designer?

Of course not. The interior "redesign" business is very easy. That's why no degree is needed, not even a 2-year degree. You move the sofa from Point A to Point B. You move the coffee table from Point C to Point D. You just have to know why Point B and Point D are better than Point A or Point C.   

You do need to know some important interior design concepts so that you do a beautiful rearrangement for your client, but it's not the same as interior design created from scratch.  


7.  Can you work with any budget?

Yes, we can work with any budget and any style of home. Furthermore, staging benefits EVERY price range!


Technical Questions

Can I Stage my home if it is listed with a Realtor?  

Yes, in fact Staging is something that many realtors feel like they instruct their clients on, but most don't do it properly. They tell you to sweep the floor, make the beds and put out fresh flowers. But that isn't staging. If your home or investment properties are listed with a Realtor, same staging rules should be applied so that you will yield shorter days on the market and greater profit. 


Do you recommend Staging a vacant property?  

Yes, every type of property benefits from being staged because people buy on emotion. Staging vacant properties helps them to sell or rent more quickly because they can picture themselves living in your home. Plus you will eliminate so many hassles such as holding expenses. 

Some people have a hard time envisioining their belongings in a vacant home so they simply move on to another property. You want to allow them to see how their home will look once they move in. How will the master bath be different from the main bathroom? Is there a bedroom for children? How do they know? How do they feel as they pull up to the house-does it seem welcoming and cozy? Does the kitchen have a family feel to it? These are the things that you have to keep in mind when trying to sell your property.


Should you stage a For Sale By Owner (FSBO) property?  

FSBO's are exceptionally important to stage because you are competing with the MLS and the marketing available to Realtors. But if your FSBO is for sale and the house next door is listed with a Realtor, a perfectly staged home will still sell much faster than one that is not. This is also where curb appeal will really come into play. Make sure your house looks better than your neighbors.


4.  Should you stage a rental property?  

People have different expectations from a rental, depending upon their price range. What if your rental offered the comforts of home? Just a few things can make a space so appealing that you will rent to a better class of renter, they will keep your property much nicer, and they will stay longer, making it much more profitable and hassle free for you as the landlord.

Staging a home for an end user is an excellent opportunity to "paint a picture" for them. Keep in mind, your renter is looking for a house to call a home. You've heard that old real estate trick of putting cookies or freshly baked bread in the oven just before you have people tour your home, well that is not too far off. People who do this are trying to appeal to the senses. Using staging during any real estate deal is beneficial and will prove to be much more profitable. 



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