There is an adage that says, “sometimes you need to spend a little money to make a little money.” And that certainly hits the mark when you are trying to sell your home in today’s real estate market. Sprucing things up and making necessary repairs is a must when putting your home up for sale. Even though buyer demand has been strong these last couple of months, they are not as willing to pay your asking price when they believe repairs are needed, especially when there are competing homes in your neighborhood.
So, what can help make a difference?
“Professional staging,” says Yvonne Roberts, owner of a popular Williamsburg staging company called Bland to Grand Rooms L.L.C., who has been staging homes for the last 17 years in historic Virginia. And she knows of what she speaks. Roberts is very experienced in the real estate business. She earned her license in 1985 and became an award-winning REALTOR® before moving on to manage several local real estate offices and eventually serving as President of the Williamsburg Area Association of REALTORS® (WAAR) Board of Directors.
“Vacant homes can be hard to visualize for some people,” says Roberts, an accredited staging professional. “That’s why you take the time to help set the stage. Well placed furniture with some nice decorative items in certain rooms can go a long way when people are trying to decide on what would work for them.”
Studies have shown that staged homes sell faster and for more money than those that have not been staged. Eighty-five percent of staged homes sell for five to 23 percent over list price, according to the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA). Eighty-three percent of buyer agents report that home staging makes it easier for homebuyers to visualize a property as their future home, according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR).
“One of my recently staged homes sold in just 24 hours at full price,” continues Roberts, whose services are popular in Colonial Heritage, a 55+ community where she has lived for several years. “Sometimes it is a matter of a buyer choosing one home over the other, and staging helps to make that decision a little easier.”
Bland to Grand Rooms specializes in rearranging and repurposing a seller’s own furniture. The purpose is to show the spaces within the home to the best advantage. For a vacant residence, there is always the option of renting furniture to give the home a sense of scale and help the buyer visualize the house as a home.
The company has three options for sellers when it comes to having their homes staged. In addition to repurposing a homeowner’s furniture, they can take advantage of Bland to Grand Rooms furniture and accessories inventory, or have furniture provided by rental companies that have an established working relationship with Roberts.
“I know this area and what is needed to sell a home here,” adds Roberts, who can act as a neutral, third-party observer for a listing agent and the seller. “I highlight the home’s strengths and strive to appeal to prospective buyers. I also offer simple home staging tips that sellers can do themselves.”
Bland to Grand Rooms’ staging strategy starts with an initial consultation that could be a couple of hours, depending on what is needed to get the home ready for prospective buyers. “I want to give sellers the best opportunity to show the value of their home, and get it sold as quickly as possible.”
Williamsburg Realty agents, like many area real estate agents, have been quite pleased with the results of Bland to Grand’s services. “Yvonne and her team do a terrific job of staging homes for Williamsburg Realty, helping us get them sold quickly,” says Ellen Smith Gajda, Owner/Broker of Williamsburg Realty.
Roberts can be reached if you would like further information on home staging by calling her at 757-784-829, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Bland to Grand Rooms can also be found on Facebook.