Does the staging really work? This was among home buying and selling topics covered in a new National Association of Realtors® (NAR) survey, and the answer appears to be “yes”.
Eighty-two percent of buyer agents said home staging made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home. The staging also seems to increase how much buyers were willing to spend on a property. 23 percent of buyer agents said the home staging increased the dollar value on offer between 1 percent and 5 percent compared to similar homes on the market that were not staged.
The response from sales agents was almost the same: 23 percent indicated a price increase of 1 to 5 percent for listings for staged homes, and 18 percent of sales agents reported an increase of between 6 and 10 percent. None of the sellers’ agents reported that home staging had a negative impact on the dollar value of the property, and 31 percent said home staging significantly reduced the time a home spent in the market.
“Stage a house helps consumers realize the full potential of a particular space or property“said Jessica Lautz, NAR’s vice president of demographics and behavioral literacy.” It shows the house in its best light and helps potential buyers imagine its various options. “
The changed sales methods such as video tours required by the pandemic may have increased the importance of staging. Eighty-three percent of buyer agents said having photos for their listings has been more important since the pandemic began. 74 percent of buyer agents said the same thing about videos, and 73 percent said that with COVID-19, it is more important to have virtual tours available for their deals.
“At the beginning of the pandemic, the personal open house tours either decreased or were completely discontinued, so that buyers had to rely on photos and virtual tours when looking for their dream home,” said Lautz. “”These characteristics become even more important as the housing stock is limited and buyers need to strategically plan their personal tours. “
Opinions about the parts of a house to be staged vary, although living rooms (90 percent) and kitchens (80 percent) have proven to be the most common, closely followed by master bedrooms (78 percent) and dining rooms (69 percent). With many workers being forced to work from home due to the pandemic, 39 percent carried out a home office or office space.
The television does not help the agents with staging or other aspects of home buying that affects the way buyers view a potential property. Interviewed agents said that a typical 10 percent of buyers felt that homes should look the way they appear on TV shows, and 63 percent said buyers made their home look like homes that were staged on TV. “The magic of television can make a home transformation look like it happened in a short period of 60 minutes, which is an unrealistic standard,” said Charlie Oppler, president of NAR.
The television presentations of the buying process also distort expectations. Seventy-one percent of the agents said they have television presentations influenced their business by setting unrealistic or heightened expectations. Sixty-one percent said television had higher expectations of the appearance of home, while 27 percent attributed television shows to the production of better educated home buyers and sellers.
Forty-five percent of realtors said the proportion of buyers who wanted to turn a home had not changed in the past five years, while 42 percent said they had. Fifty-nine percent said more buyers had planned to remodel a home in the past five years, while 34 percent said they hadn’t seen any change. Agents surveyed said that typically 25 percent of buyers planning a remodel will do so within the first three months of owning their home.