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Sellers who sell 'on purpose' get a faster sale

Authored: Terrylynn Fisher
Publisher: Times Valley Version

Ever wondered why two homes in your neighborhood will sell for different prices and/or why one takes longer to sell than another?

Is it that the seller is "just lucky"? Is it the real estate agent they choose? Or is it "on purpose"? "On purpose" in this case is a pre-meditated, well-thought-out plan for accomplishing your goal of getting your home sold quickly for the most money possible.

The professional real estate agent you choose will make the difference and your experience will be very different if you do a little homework first. After all, once you have decided to sell, don't you want to have the most experienced full time professional available for the sale of your home? You will pay no more for excellence.

When you decide to sell your home, it be- comes a house, which becomes a product you are selling. Do you understand this difference?

"The way you live in your home and the way we sell your house are two different things," says Barb Schwarz, staging originator.

Your home is where you let your hair down, where you are comfortable and where you have all of your stuff around you. A house that is for sale is being viewed through the eye of the public as a product.

You can put your product on the market for sale without preparation, expecting the public to see past your collections, favorite chair, the worn carpet, cobwebs and dirty windows. The person you attract that wants that house (product) is entirely different from the person who is attracted to the sparkling, spacious, light and open, uncluttered home (product).

Do you think that there will be any difference in the price obtained on the two homes, even given the identical square-footage and room configuration? Let me tell j you that the answer is a resounding "yes!" So much difference, in fact, that the tide is turning for sellers who are educated about selling, who find it beneficial to have their homes "staged" putting their home on ~ stage before they allow any potential ~ buyer to walk through the door.

It is not uncommon for a seller of a staged home to obtain thousands of dollars more for his or her home, when in fact, the cost to prepare the home could be a fraction of that. In a depressed market, a staged home will likely experience a much quicker sale, while other houses sit on the market longer, costing their owners time and money. Does it pay to sell anything without trying to maximize your return on the investment?

How do you stage a home for sale? First choose a real estate agent who understands the benefits of staging. Look for someone who has taken the time and effort to create a career and acquire the professional skills needed to benefit you "on purpose". Some would rather not have to tell you that your favorite chair must go, or that the color you love on the living room wall is making the room look smaller or dark, or that a few hundred dollars in landscaping can bring you a lot more in a final sale price.

It is my opinion that a good real estate agent will expose you to the options. It is your decision whether or not to go forward with them. Do you want to work with an agent who is afraid to tell you something that might make you mad or hurt your feelings?

It takes courage in this competitive real estate market to tell a seller something they don't necessarily want to hear. As an agent myself, I can tell you it is not about whether you like me, but that I was professional, did my job well and you want to tell your friends and family afterwards that I should be their next Realtor. I feel it is my duty to expose you to everything I've learned that might increase your final proceeds. That's money you could use for retirement, the next home or your child's college education!

How do you find real estate agents who are committed enough to their careers to give this type of service to their clients? There is a real estate designation that teaches real estate professionals and designers how to stage homes for sale. These real estate agents and designers have taken an intensive hands-on course to become Accredited Staging Professionals (ASP).

To find someone qualified you could ask friends for a referral to their ASP real estate agent. You could ask the real estate agents you interview if they have the ASP designation, obtained through, whose founder and creator, Barb Schwarz, is a well-known Realtor and speaker who has been teaching staging for 18 years throughout the United States. Your real estate agent can also refer you to professional stagers who are ASP designers. You can call 800-392-7161 or go to the website for a referral of an ASP Realtor or ASP designer.

In addition, you will find hundreds of pages of helpful hints there on products to clean, deodorize, and help with your staging (as well as before and after photos of staging examples).

Stage your home to sell and sell "on purpose." The investment will payoff in time and dollars for you.

Terrylynn Fisher is an ASP Realtor listing and staging homes with Diablo Realty in Walnut Creek, 800-342-2562

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