By Charlene Storozuk
Recently, I had the pleasure of exhibiting at the REALTORS® Without BORDERS Convention & Trade Show, Southern Ontario’s largest annual conference on real estate.
I must say that I was very impressed by the number of REALTORS® who are advocates of home staging. There are still a few sitting on the fence about its merits, but in time, as home staging grows in popularity, I’m confident that even more will become believers.
In speaking with REALTORS® at the show, I learned that the apprehension voiced by some was out of fear of offending their clients. They felt that the suggestion of bringing in a home stager would be met with resistance. Admittedly, this is a legitimate concern, but one that can be overcome. For that reason, I decided to touch on it in this blog post.
Undoubtedly, you have come across many home owners who feel their home is perfect just the way it is. How do you tactfully tell them that the life-size portrait of dear old Aunt Edna in the front hall is downright frightening or that the beer fridge in the bathroom has to go? Offering your client a complimentary staging consultation alleviates that problem for you since you don’t have to be the bearer of bad news. Don’t worry though; a professional home stager will be very diplomatic.
Once you make the decision to offer your clients a staging consultation and drop the “S-word” – staging that is – most will be absolutely thrilled that you are giving them this opportunity. There will, however, be a small number that will meet your offer with opposition. Now what? This is where how you deliver the message comes into play. Explain that as a part of your business model you offer a complimentary staging consultation to all of your clients. If they hear that everyone receives a consultation, they won’t feel like you are finding fault with their home and will be less likely to resist. In fact, once they learn that you offer this service to everyone else, my guess is that they will insist on the same. After all, no one wants to feel like they are missing out on an opportunity – its human nature.
Why not try this approach; it just might work for you. I’d love to hear your success stories on how you have overcome this issue. Please bring them on!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Charlene Storozuk is the owner of Dezigner Digz, a professional home staging and interior decorating company based in Burlington, Ontario. Her work is featured in the book FabJob Guide To Become A Home Stager, 2009 edition. She serves as regional vice-president, Canada for the Real Estate Staging Association and is a past recipient of the North American Leadership Award for her work as founder and president of the Halton & Hamilton-Wentworth RESA Chapter.