Speaker 1: Hey, welcome back to Ready Set Sell. Thanks so much for joining us this fine Saturday. What I left you with the last segment was simply talking about the importance and how important it is and kind of give you the mindset of what you as a seller should be looking at, and also you and your agents should be looking at. But I’m going to give you one quick analogy as far as getting your house staged that might even have a better understanding.
Imagine you’re going on a trip, and we’ll just say to Cancun, maybe some place you haven’t been before, and you’ve seen the pictures of the hotel and the hotel room, and you’ve flown down there, and you get down there, and you get into your hotel, and you just … The excitement is unbelievable, and you get into your hotel room. You open the hotel room, and the light, natural light is coming through, and all of a sudden you look down and the bed is not made.
Just like that, the illusion is broken. I say illusion because we all know that when you’re at a hotel with hundreds of people, Right, Kelly? Thousands of people, who knows how many are in there. Maybe 20 minutes ago the person just left, right? We don’t know.
Kelly: It’s true. No.
Speaker 1: But all of a sudden, the illusion is broken, and what you tried to create goes away. That’s kind of the same concept we’re talking about when we’re staging your home. Again, you’ve done the heavy lifting if you needed to. You’ve done the updating, you’ve gotten the price to where you want to as far as getting top dollar. You’ve done that, and now it’s show time, and that’s what you need to look at, is show time. So, let’s talk about some of the key elements of that, and one of the things that you really need to be focusing on, and that’s closets and closet space, because not only do you want to have the illusion of not having anybody live there, but you also want to create the illusion of space.
Remember, the buyers are coming in. They’ve never seen your home before. As far as they know, this is the dream home. We want to build up to anticipation, we want to make that happen. Me and Kelly’s talked about this before, but Kelly, I mean, do you have any examples as far as closet space, things like that, that have happened?
Kelly: Absolutely. We had a seller who did not get to read the book, and she left … Her closets were just chuck full, chuck full of stuff, and after we had her read the book, she understood, and she probably pulled out three fourths of the stuff that she had, and put it in storage, and it just really opened up those closets. The buyers were able to see that there was plenty of room, plenty of room for their stuff as well. So, it just really made a huge difference.
Speaker 1: It does, and I think that’s it. It’s the illusion. Remember, people are trying to see themselves in your home, and that becomes very important. That’s why we talk about neutral colors and why that becomes so important. It has nothing to do with your color selection. You can have fantastic taste and styles, and even with wallpaper, same thing. But understanding is we’re trying to neutralize this. People are trying to see themselves in your home, and we want to create that illusion for them to do that, and also space.
I know situations where house buyers absolutely loved it, but chose not to buy that home because they didn’t think it had enough closet space. Well, the ironic part about was is they bought another house that had less closets, but guess what? They were half full, and theirs were jam packed. Mostly, it’s kind of like this way. There’s nothing 100%, so it’s not saying that if you don’t do the staging you will never sell your home, but understand is what happens many times is it’ll either delay it, or the price that you pay. So, let’s talk about some of the things that are just, I think, most sellers get, but let’s just make sure.
Clean your house, clean your house. If it can’t hit House Beautiful cover of the magazine, clean it again. These steps we’re talking about has nothing to do if you have mansion in Edwardsville or O’Fallon, or if you have a nice, three-bedroom, two-bath home in Belleville, or Swansea, or Waterloo. It doesn’t matter.
Clean house is a clean house. The clean house also gives buyers something else. It gives them the idea that the house is well-maintained, and that’s more of a subconscious level. But if you have a clean house, you want to make sure that those things … You just get kudos for that, and I think most sellers know that.
Secondly, fix everything. I mean, Kelly, I’m sure there’s times … A creaky door, the handle, the door won’t open.
Kelly: The door that doesn’t lock. You have to do the deadbolt because the other, the regular lock doesn’t lock.
Speaker 1: Right.
Kelly: It matters.
Speaker 1: It does matter, because, and you’ve probably heard this before, the buyers look at you and they say, “Well, they’re selling their house. Why isn’t this fixed?” What’s worse about these small things is not that the small things is going to distract them, but again, you start building up a case, and the buyers just say something similar to … well, if the door doesn’t quite shut, if the cabinet door in the kitchen doesn’t shut properly, if certain things, the light switch doesn’t work, all these minor things, a light bulb, they start building up and they start telling themselves the story consciously or subconsciously, “If this is what I can see, what can’t I see? So now, is the air conditioning/heating system really up to snuff? Is the water heater … ” I mean, how things are being maintained.
Kelly: Is the roof good?
Speaker 1: Is the roof good? Yeah. I mean, if you don’t care about this, and I can see this, then naturally what I can’t see … and that puts devalue. Even if they put an offer on your home, many times they will devalue this. And the seller has no idea of maybe why they didn’t get quite the offer that they thought they were going to get. Many times, not always but many times, this is the simple reason.
I think the third thing that you really want to focus on, and we’ve talked about, is lighting. It’s having the natural lighting in. It’s also having every lamp … We talked about having the friends over. You can get a small bucket, a plastic bucket you can buy at the dollar store, and you can just throw in the shampoo and the soap and put it in the linen closet or put it someplace. Put it underneath the sink if you have that space there. Just move those things out. That’s become so important because people all of a sudden personalize it. They don’t like seeing it. I mean, again, even as agents, sometimes when we walk in, there’s a personality situation of, “Well, okay, I don’t know if I need to really see that.” Right?
Kelly: Right. Right.
Speaker 1: Those are the things that we really want to focus on. Getting the beds made. Again, thinking of friends coming over is the best analogy I can do, and that you’re really going to showcase your house. Because in real estate, perception is reality, and the old saying is that you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. That becomes so critical.
So like I said, those things there are really important, but we’re going to dig a little bit more deeper in the next segment. We’re going to talk about … We mentioned lighting, but how important lighting really is, and Kelly has some great examples of what we’re talking about. And also about creating space and how important space is and how easy it is to do.
With that said, again, we’re not going to have enough time to go through maybe everything here, the ten steps, but get the book. Go to ReadySetSold.org, not dot-com. Get the book. It’s an easy read. Kelly’s read it. She loved it, right?
Speaker 1: Absolutely. That’s a good answer, Kelly. But again, go to ReadySetSold.org, not dot-com. We’ll be right back after these messages.
Ready Set Sold with Bryan Vogt #06-02: Kelly Etheridge of RE/MAX Preferred #1: How Not Staging Affects Sale
July 1, 2017