MHM Professional Staging, LLC is lead by Megan Morris, CEO and founder. MHM Professional Staging is your one-stop source for all your real estate staging, home staging and design needs. Here you will find effective home staging ideas.
To sell your home faster and for top dollar in today’s market, home staging is one of the best marketing strategies. It puts your home in its best possible light and ensures that it has a strong first impression on a wide range of buyers.
It is possible to stage your own home, but there are a few things to consider before committing to that decision. You may be hindering your home’s chances on the market rather than helping them.
Signs You Need a Home StagerYou’re struggling to emotionally detach from your home
It’s difficult to look at the home you’ve lived in for years without having all of your memories and personal feelings attached to it. The thing is, when a home goes on the market, it’s like any other product. It’s important for it to appeal to a wide range of buyers. When we’re emotionally attached to our homes, it’s hard to see past what we love about it and look at it with a fresh, objective eye.
A home stager bridges that gap. We look at home from the outside perspective of a buyer so we can see things as they will see it. We can then suggest the most effective changes that will put your home in its best light possible so it’s ready to make a great first impression when it hits the market.
You don’t have a lot of extra time
Staging a home takes a lot of time and energy. It includes researching the market, learning about your target buyer, assessing your home, making necessary repairs, decluttering, space planning, and adding the finishing touches. If you are already busy with work, kids, and other commitments, it may be hard to find time to do all that needs to be done to get the most out of the staging process.
A professional home stager will relieve that burden so you can put all of your focus on the other important things in your life. We do all the research, assess your home, and then can carry out all of the tasks needed to make your home ready for the market. It’s one less thing for you to worry about.
You aren’t sure what the ‘psychology of a home buyer’ is
Home staging is all about appealing to the psychology of a home buyer. If you aren’t sure what that is (or haven’t even heard of it), then you’re not going to get the best results from your staging efforts. As professional home stagers, we have spent years researching and analyzing the buyer’s experience when they are house hunting. We know how to tap into their emotions and encourage them to feel at home when they tour a listing. It informs all of our decisions from the colors we pick to the way we arrange the furniture, as well as every small detail after that.
You don’t know anything about your target buyers or the market
The real estate market is constantly changing, and it’s different in every neighborhood. Knowing the real estate market in your area is key to staging your home effectively so that it appeals most to the buyers that will be considering it. The more you know about your target buyers, the more you can tailor your home to speak to them and evoke an emotional response.
You don’t know how to work with vignettes, color schemes or furniture arrangement
A number of elements come together to make a home appealing to buyers. The right staging can make a home feel larger, inviting, and highlight all its best attributes. Things like furniture arrangement, color schemes, vignettes, and other techniques are part of the staging process. If you don’t have a strong understanding of these techniques and how to use them effectively based on a home’s individual needs, then it’s best to leave it in the hands of a home stager to get the best possible results.
The kitchen is referred to as the heart of the home. It’s where you prepare the meals for your family and where everyone often ends up during a party. It’s also one of the most important rooms in your home when it comes time to resell.
Looking to renovate your kitchen but aren’t sure what to do? We’ve gathered some of our favorite celebrity kitchens to give you some ideas and inspiration in a variety of styles.
There are a lot of details that go into successfully staging a home for sale. Bedrooms, especially the master bedroom, hold a lot of weight in a buyer’s analysis of a home. This is a room where it is especially important to make them feel at home.
The bed is the focal point of a bedroom, so the bedding is crucial to making it look great. A messy bed is an immediate turn-off to buyers and sends the wrong message. To make your bedroom look clean and relaxing, follow these tips on bedding for home staging.
Bedding Tips for Home StagingYou can never go wrong with white
White linens are the most classic choice for bedding. You can pick up white bedding at a variety of stores without spending a lot. There’s a good reason you always see white bedding in hotels: it’s timeless, chic, and easy on the eyes. It makes the room feel relaxing and luxurious without being too distracting. In home staging, hotel rooms are a great source of inspiration because most buyers love the feeling they get in a beautiful, clean hotel room.
Keep it simple
Simple is key with home staging. When there is too much going on in terms of color and pattern, it becomes distracting to the eye, especially in MLS photos. A clean, streamlined look is best. White linens are best with just a few colorful accents, such as accent pillows and a throw. If you do have a patterned comforter, fold it at the base of the bed for a nice pop of contrast.
A few layers of pillows always make a bed feel more luxurious and welcoming. You can also add a throw or comforter at the base of the bed for even more style. Having a bed that looks elegant, cozy, and inviting will spark buyers’ imaginations and make them feel that much more at home in the space.
Press your linens
A nice extra step when staging your bedding is to iron the linens, including the pillowcases. In hotels, the bedding is always crisp and wrinkle-free. This makes the room look cleaner and that much more sophisticated. Though it will take some effort, it goes a long way in the presentation of a bedroom.
In a large space with an open concept, the arrangement of each area can be tricky. When done wrong, the whole space can feel cold, awkward, and unappealing. The key is to clearly define each space while creating a harmonious flow between them.
But how exactly do you define a space without walls? It’s a lot easier than you may think. Here are some simple, effective ways to define a space without walls and even create some privacy when necessary.
Tips on Defining a Space Without WallsArea rugs
An area rug is the quickest, easiest way to define a space. The right one will pull the space together and make it feel warmer, cozier, and more inviting. It’s also a great way to give the space more character. A natural fiber rug, for example, could bring in a rustic, coastal vibe, while a faux fur could elevate the glamour. In a large space where there are multiple area rugs, just make sure they complement each other.
The way furniture is arranged has a big impact on the overall flow of a home. In a large, open floor plan, creating boundaries with the furniture is helpful in defining each space. For example, positioning a sofa in a living room so that the back faces the adjacent dining room. This clearly defines each space and creates conversation areas. Just be careful not to block doorways, sightlines or traffic flow with furniture.
Color is one of the most powerful elements in decorating. It can even be used to give each area in an open space its own identity. The colors should all coordinate but be different enough that visually, each space has a clear and defined boundary. This can be done with small, subtle accents such as artwork and pillows or more dramatic ones like an accent wall or large, colorful pieces of furniture.
Room dividers are great for offering privacy and definition to smaller areas of one large, open space. They are especially useful in studio apartments. A room divider can provide privacy to a bedroom area or home office, for example, to keep them separate from the public areas. Pieces that work well as room dividers are screens, bookcases, and curtains.
In today’s market, one of the best marketing strategies to sell your home fast and for top dollar is home staging. Once you’ve decided to take advantage of it, though, there’s an important question that pops up: professional staging or do-it-yourself home staging?
Both have advantages, so it depends on the homeowner’s budget and needs to determine which is the right option for them. Here are some things to consider to help you make an informed decision.
Professional Home StagingStrategic marketing
The biggest advantage of hiring a professional home stager is their strategic expertise. Home stagers are more than just stylists; they know how a buyer’s mind works and how to tap into their psychology. There is an extensive understanding of the real estate market as a whole and locally, as well as demographics and trends. They bring all of this knowledge to the table to create an effective marketing plan for their clients’ properties through home staging.
Saves time and stress
There are a lot of responsibilities on the homeowner when a house is going on the market. Having to stage it yourself is yet another large, important task to take on. Putting it in the hands of a professional clears up your time and energy for other things, and you can rest assured that it will be done in the most efficient, lucrative way possible.
Access to a network of vendors
Professional home stagers have access to a network of skilled vendors that can help with any projects that need to be done to make your home ready for the market, such as repairs, painting, flooring, and landscaping. Instead of having to find contractors or doing all the work yourself, you can trust that the best people for the job will see it through.
DIY Home StagingBudget-friendly
The biggest draw to DIY home staging is the budget-friendly aspect of it. Instead of investing in a professional, you save money by carrying out all the steps yourself from researching the market and analyzing your property to taking care of repairs and staging the home for sale. Our book Stageology: Staging Your Home for Sale is a step-by-step guide that can help see you through the process.
Of course, you could always have the best of both worlds. An in-person or virtual consultation with a professional home stager is a great way to save money while also taking advantage of their strategic expertise. They’ll give you a customized plan for your property that you can then carry out yourself on your own time.
If you do decide you want to put it all in the hands of a professional home stager, keep in mind that home staging is always less than the first price reduction of your property should it stay on the market too long without attracting a buyer.
Selling a home has its ups and downs. It’s exciting to move forward and start fresh in a new place, but leaving behind what you’ve known can bring up a lot of emotions. To sell your home, it’s necessary to make some changes to get it ready for the market. This can be difficult for some sellers who have trouble detaching from the memories when they have to pack things up and de-personalize the décor.
If you are experiencing some trouble getting over this emotional burden, here are some tips to help you move forward with a positive outlook and do what you need to do to get the most money for your property.
Emotionally Detaching from Your Home to Sell ItThink of your home as a product
Selling a home is the same as selling any other product. It needs to be appealing to the target market otherwise, buyers will move on to a competitor that does appeal to them. Making changes such as neutralizing the color palette and decluttering shelves and surfaces is not a personal commentary on your decorating. It’s simply a marketing strategy to broaden the home’s appeal. When you start looking at your home as a product that needs to attract the widest number of buyers possible, it becomes a lot easier to make decisions like taking down family photos and removing personalized décor.
Keep in mind all that you have to gain
Staging your home helps you sell it faster and for more money. The faster you sell your home, the sooner you can move on to the next chapter in your life and get past the inconvenience of having your home on the market. And of course, who doesn’t want to get top dollar for it? When the emotions start to creep in about making changes and packing things away, remind yourself what you have to gain by doing so. Think about moving into your new home and all the money you’ll have in the bank.
Remember that your home and belongings are just objects
Your home and the items and décor that are in it are not you or your family – they’re just objects. It’s natural to become attached to them and project sentimental memories onto them, but at the end of the day, they aren’t what’s important. What is important is moving you and your family into the next chapter of your lives.
Take plenty of photos
Before you start decluttering and doing any kind of staging, take plenty of photos (and maybe even some video) of your home as you’ve been living in it. Once you do start making changes and eventually move, you’ll have the photos and videos to look back on with fondness.
This month’s Featured Staged Listing is a stunning high-rise condo in Downtown Orlando. What makes this place so special (besides the incredible view) are the details throughout the home. The kitchen has a contemporary flair with a beautiful countertop that looks like marble. The backsplash is a stylish mosaic tile and the floors are a beautiful grey tile that looks like wood. There is even a fun alcove in the entryway that features a contemporary tile on the wall that creates a chic first impression the moment you walk in.
Even though the condo is cozy, it offers plenty of space for eating and entertaining. The counter space in the kitchen offers room for eating and serving, and there is another charming dining area by the floor-to-ceiling windows. As you can see in the photos, there is ample room for seating in the living area, too.
We staged this condo with bright pops of orange, yellow, and green to capture the fun, youthful promise of the lifestyle you’d be able to enjoy in this condo.
Home staging is one of the most powerful and effective marketing strategies to sell your home fast and for top dollar. Once you’ve decided to invest in staging your home, it all starts with a consultation. But what exactly does that mean?
Here’s a breakdown of what to expect from a home staging consultation so you can be prepared.
Home Staging Consultation StepsA walkthrough of the home
A home staging consultation starts with a walkthrough of the home. The staging expert will take their time going through each room in the home, taking notes along the way. This is our chance to take a walk in the buyer’s shoes to see what kind of first impression the home would give them and observe what changes need to be made to make it more appealing to a critical buyer. We may also ask the seller questions along the way.
Discussion about the home’s target market
Home staging is the same concept as packaging a product. To know how to package it in a way that will attract the consumer, it’s crucial to know your target market. Home stagers work directly with real estate agents and spend time learning and studying the trends so we can “package” (or stage) each home as effectively as possible. Not only do we know the trends in the market as a whole, but we also know how to appeal to specific demographics, such as families versus singles.
A review of the home’s curb appeal
The first impression starts at the driveway. Some buyers won’t even bother going inside if they don’t like what they see when they drive up. A home stager will give your home’s curb appeal a review from the curb to the front door, pointing out any repairs and changes that need to be made. We’ll suggest things such as landscaping ideas and even paint color suggestions to make the strongest impression possible.
A review of each room
Each room will get a detailed assessment of what should be done to make it more appealing to the target market. This can include things such as:
Some rooms may only require a little bit of redesign while others require more extensive staging and changes to be ready to impress buyers.
What to do next
Once everything has been reviewed, your home stager will be able to carry out most of the recommended changes (like decluttering, redesign, and staging) and refer you to a reputable vendor for the rest (such as cleaning and painting). They will walk you through the process to make sure everything is done right. Some stagers (such as MHM Professional Staging) even provide a photographer to take beautiful MLS photos once everything is completed. Then, you just have to wait for the offers to start rolling in!
There are a lot of factors that go into making a home appealing to buyers so you can sell it fast and for the most money possible. One you may be overlooking? Furniture arrangement.
How a room is arranged has a big effect on the size of the space, how someone feels when they walk into it, and where a buyer’s attention goes. Here are some reasons why you should be taking a second look at the arrangements in your home before putting it on the market.
The Importance of Furniture ArrangementIt affects the perceived size of the space
When it comes to the size of a room, there is the actual size and there is the size it appears to be. Most people don’t understand the true size of a room without the help of the right furniture and furniture arrangement, especially in an awkward space. For example, in an empty home, many buyers will assume a bedroom or living room is too small because a space always seems smaller without furniture, especially if the room isn’t a traditional shape.
The wrong furniture arrangement can have the same effect. It can throw off the entire look and make the room seem smaller than it is simply because the space hasn’t been maximized by the arrangement. Where the furniture goes is even more important than the furniture itself. The most beautiful décor can be ruined by a bad arrangement.
Traffic flow makes a room feel inviting or awkward
Have you ever walked into a room and something felt off about it? That can often be attributed to an ineffective traffic flow. When you enter a room, there should be a natural flow from one area to the next. Blocking the path, obstructing doorways or windows, and not having clear activity zones all contribute to a space feeling awkward and uncomfortable, especially to buyers. Most won’t be able to put their finger on what is causing the problem, so they’ll assume it’s a bad floor plan and move on to the next listing.
It directs your attention
A great furniture arrangement will guide your attention to a focal point in the room around which everything else will flow. This is especially important to take advantage of when your home is on the market because you can guide a buyer’s attention to the most positive attributes of a space, such as a lovely view or a wall of beautiful built-ins. Otherwise, a buyer’s attention may land on the less appealing areas in your home.
It makes or breaks the MLS photos
MLS photos are important to selling your home faster because most buyers nowadays look online first before checking out the home in person. If they don’t like what they see online, they won’t even bother going to a showing. The right furniture arrangement will show off each room in its best light in the limited view the photos offer and entice buyers to want to see more.
It may seem like wanting to sell your home fast is a no-brainer, but some sellers find themselves sitting on a property for a while when it doesn’t end up going quickly. They adopt the mindset that the right buyer will come along at the right time and stick by their price and the “as-is” condition of their home.
Ultimately, this approach is detrimental to their bottom-line. They are unlikely to get the price they want and, in most cases, end up having to drop the price considerably to get people interested in the home again after already wasting lots of time and money in the process.
The biggest benefit to selling your home fast is that you have a better chance of selling your home for top dollar.
Downsides of Letting Your Home Sit on the MarketThe longer it’s on the market, the more negotiating power buyers hold
When buyers view a home online, the amount of time it has been on the market is included in the listing’s details. Real estate agents also pay attention to this and will inform their clients (buyers) of how long it has been for sale because if it’s been a while, that gives the buyers negotiating power. The initial pool of buyers passed on it, meaning it was listed too high for the market or the condition didn’t meet the expectations of buyers for that price point. Once it’s been on the market for longer than thirty days, people lose interest unless they can negotiate the price down.
Household payments add up
While your home is on the market, you remain responsible for all the expenses including the mortgage, utilities, association fees, and maintenance of the property. If you’ve already bought your next home, you’ll be stuck paying double on everything until it sells.
Your life is interrupted until it sells
Your life is basically on hold from moving on to the next chapter until you’re able to close on your current home, especially if you’re waiting to buy your next place until it sells. Living in a home that’s on the market is uncomfortable, especially the longer it goes. You have to keep the home in pristine condition at all times and be ready to vacate the property whenever a buyer wants to view it.
Your home loses desirability
The longer a home is on the market, the less appealing it is to buyers. They start to wonder what it is about the home that has made no one else interested in it to sell it faster or what problems might have come up if someone did try to buy it and the deal fell through. Were there issues with the inspection? Are the sellers being difficult? These are things that commonly run through a buyer’s mind when they see a house that’s been sitting on the market for an extended period of time.
The market changes on a dime
The real estate market is always changing, meaning that it could go from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market in the time yours is still sitting there. Interest rates go up, supply and demand fluctuate, and a lot of variables can swing in and out of your favor. The quicker you sell your home, the more control you have in taking advantage of the market in its current state.