Author Topic: Home stage and professional photography?  (Read 973 times)

MyCircus, MyMonkeys

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Home stage and professional photography?
« on: June 04, 2018, 07:02:13 AM »
Hello! We are selling our house in Colorado Springs, and it is a seller's market. I'm concerned about some of the damage in our house, and how it will effect our sale (we are working on the repairs we can make though). Our damage?
  1- The flooring on the main floor needs to be replaced entirely. The carpet is gross (I think it might be okay with a deep cleaning?), and the engineered wood floors are damaged (beyond repair- I checked). Replacing flooring would be too expensive for us.
  2 - horrible drywall repairs- you can see bumps and waves on the wall. This is after hiring a drywall guy to do initial repairs (and I've called, he is not answering me anymore. Found him on Craigslist, so really no recourse).
We have about $4k we can spend on moving/repairing. I expect to hire a handyman for all the little things I can't get to, house cleaners for the move out, painters for the rooms with (I think) beautiful dark and moody paint, and carpet cleaning (awesome friends are helping us move without renting a truck).

My questions- given the damage I know about, being a seller's market, and our budget for the move, is it worth hiring a home stager and professional photographer? I feel like home staging would give people something to see, besides focusing on needing to replace flooring. My other half thinks its a waste of money. We are planning on using a Redfin realtor, but he is not so good with optics (he didn't recommend any design changes; everything we've done is based on my vast knowledge acquired by watching HGTV. Also, I get the feeling his personality is more logic based (like Data in Next Gen Star Trek), so maybe that is why he doesn't think there needs to be any thought into the presentation of the house. I think people tend to be emotional about a house purchase (at least I was), and having non-personal decorations make the house feel like they could make it a home. 

Additional information: We are in a new neighborhood (right across the street from a park), and all the houses are selling at $330k and up (this includes new builds; but they tend to $350k and up). I know we need to talk to a realtor, but I think we should get between $320k (given repairs) and $340k (wildly optimistic). The meteoric rise in house prices the last two years mean either price will net us a profit. I just want to maximize that!  Thank you for any advice.

TL; DR- should I invest in a home stager and professional photographer for our home sale in a seller's market?
« Last Edit: June 04, 2018, 07:07:35 AM by MyCircus, MyMonkeys »

pl28

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2018, 08:48:25 AM »
I had a rental house that was not in the best condition but manage to sell it for well above my target price. I think best is to declutter and make your house simple and clean even with some imperfections. I would not try to hide anything since that can be a bigger headache down the road.

Since it is in a seller market, most people would look past a lot of cosmetic issues.

Good luck with your sale.

tralfamadorian

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2018, 12:38:37 PM »
...painters for the rooms with (I think) beautiful dark and moody paint...

Please don't do this. Stick with off white, pale dusty blues and shades of greige. Taste specific dark colors will pull down your selling price. 

cloudsail

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2018, 02:50:47 PM »
Yes, one hundred times yes. Even more in a sellers market. You will get back way more than you put in by making the house attractive to buyers.

Ditto on the neutral color scheme. Go white or very pale shades of grey, because that is all the rage now and it makes your house look shiny and bright.

cchrissyy

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2018, 04:16:15 PM »
in my area, yes you need to hire the staging even though market is hot and even though the house has some flaws. literally everybody does this except houses that are in truly tear-down condition.

Dicey

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2018, 04:35:01 PM »
Ask your realtor. They know what needs to be done (no hiding shitty work, no dark color paint), and they have the resources to get it done. They also know the good stagers and what it will cost. Staged houses frequently go for more, so why wouldn't you stage to sell? Some realtors provide the service for no extra fee. Want a pro tip for finding a realtor? Look up their past listing photos. I know of two people who went with friends-of-friends who took shitty listing photos. This is a HCOLA. In each case, this shoddiness cost the inexperienced sellers close to 100k each. Not kidding.

P.S. I am not a realtor, but I have bought and sold a fair number lot of houses.

px4shooter

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2018, 07:46:28 PM »
You want to lose 6-8% by using a realtor? 18-24k+ loss right off the top.

Spend that money on fixing the place instead and make more.

FSBO and find a mutually agreed upon attorney for docs. Last one a friend used was $1800.

Another Reader

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2018, 06:53:15 AM »
You want to lose 6-8% by using a realtor? 18-24k+ loss right off the top.

Spend that money on fixing the place instead and make more.

FSBO and find a mutually agreed upon attorney for docs. Last one a friend used was $1800.

I wish this were true, but it's not.  To get maximum exposure and professional negotiation, use an agent.  You need to be on the MLS to get exposure.  A good agent (see Dicey's remarks) will likely get a higher price from a qualified buyer and make sure you have a smooth transaction.  In a really hot market, the best agents will manage a bidding war for you.

kenmoremmm

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2018, 10:51:09 AM »
pro photos in the seattle area ran about $200-300. well worth it. staging was about $2000 for a 1500 sf house we just sold. well worth it. YMMV

MyCircus, MyMonkeys

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2018, 12:55:43 PM »
Thanks for all the replies.
Thank you for all of the advice!

When I mentioned the dark colors, I meant I need to paint over them (to a neutral color). Sorry that was unclear.

Regarding a realtor- I'm not comfortable with the idea of FSBO. I was leaning toward using the local Redfin agent, except when he came by he had no suggestions for repairs. I expected a lot more guidance. I wanted to use him, because Redfin costs less for us to use. I think they do hire a professional photographer based on current Redfin houses for sale. But in this case, it may an example of you get what you pay for.

I will definitely start researching/interviewing home stagers. 

kenmoremmm

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2018, 01:04:59 PM »
redfin has a great website. i'll leave it at that.

letired

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2018, 01:05:44 PM »
Why don't you consult another agent before looking for stagers? If you were not happy with the first agent, why aren't you interviewing several more to see what they have to say?

Dicey

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2018, 07:15:08 AM »
^^This^^ In the area where we own our rentals, some of the best realtors are a sister duo who do their own staging and it's included in their fee. They're so good, we always try to hit their open houses just to see what they've done. Alas, we never buy from them, because we're scum-sucking bottom dwellers in search of ugly, outdated houses and theirs go for top dollar.

Duke03

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Re: Home stage and professional photography?
« Reply #13 on: June 29, 2018, 01:30:52 PM »
We sold our last house in a sellers market.  The realtor paid for a home stager and professional photographer.  Listing went live at 10pm and within an hour we had 5 people schedule to look at the house the next day.  First lady that looked at the house at 9am submitted an offer over asking and she bought the house.  Staging and photos seemed to do the trick for us.  I wouldn't over look it when trying to sell a house.