From drab to fab: Make your house better with staging and furnishing | ParkRecord.com

From drab to fab: Make your house better with staging and furnishing

Staging is all the rage

This staged living room sets an emotional tone through well-placed textures, colors and aesthetics. Photos courtesy of Dressed Design.

Picture yourself walking into an unfamiliar living room with beige walls, family photos of people you don't know, a brown, overstuffed sofa, and a typical wood coffee table. Now, erase that vision, and walk into a living room popping with a metallic light fixture radiating from the ceiling; a fire blazing in the stone hearth; a soft, cream-and-brown hide spread across a wide-plank wooden floor; a plush throw blanket over a sleek leather sofa; and a glass coffee table showcasing an abstract art piece and hardcover books. Which living room draws you in the most?

Staging Effects

With more than a thousand homes for sale in Park City, a savvy marketing tool is gaining momentum in a big way. It's called "staging," and it's been helping Park City homes, like one on Main Street that sat stagnant on the market for 375 days, sell in two days, after its internal makeover.

"Staging," in its most basic term, is the enhancement of interiors by employing fine interior and exterior furnishings, artwork, rugs, textiles, objects and accessories to transform what is perceived as empty or unfamiliar, uninspiring spaces into decadent designer homes. Staging also can include interior and exterior painting; kitchen and bathroom upgrades; affixed lighting upgrades; sound and electrical enhancements; and landscaping.

Staging transforms an empty great room into a living area in which buyers can easily visualize themselves relaxing, reading and enjoying the mountain lifestyle. Photo courtesy of Dressed Design.
Gray tones are currently trending. The custom silver mirror on the wall, and the candleholder, accent the gray chairs and rug. Photos courtesy of Dressed Design

A home with well-placed, well-planned, appropriately sized and styled furnishings and décor lends itself to:

  • Expand the perceived square footage of the home,
  • Grant the best layout and traffic flow in each room,
  • Create the perception of the "dream lifestyle,"
  • Provide light where rooms, areas or hallways are dim,
  • Create the impression of a happy, successful home with the proper emotional "cues,"
  • Generate more calls and overall stronger interest from brokers,
  • Bring in substantially more buyers to see the home, which usually results in more offers,
  • Increase the offer prices on the home, often creating competing bidding on homes,
  • Give buyers the increased "value-added" to purchase a "designer-furnished, move-in-ready home,"
  • Expedite the success and speed of the sale, creating a win-win for sellers, agents and buyers.

Staged to Sell

Companies like Dressed Design have assisted the sales of more than 25 Park City homes in the last 12 months. Though real estate sales are booming, there's still plenty of competition. Therefore, sellers seeking a competitive edge are finding staging a valuable marketing tool to take a home from a comparison purchase to an "emotional, must-have" purchase.

In this room, staging invites families to spend time playing together. This home in Old Town sold seven days after it was staged. Photo courtesy of Dressed Design.

Outdated mountain furnishings that recall the days of "Smokey the Bear" can be transformed to Smokin' Hot with proper selection and placement of designer furniture, artwork, fine rugs, chandeliers and pendants, plants, antiques, custom mirrors, collectable books, landscape photos and accessories, such as luxury bed linens or bathrobes.

Many sellers view staging as a short-term, high-yield investment — in other words, a smart business move. Rather than spending tens of thousands of dollars to purchase furnishings and hope buyers want to move into a fully furnished home, which may or may not suit their taste, sellers use companies like Dressed Design to "stage" their Park City homes, because, as it turns out, it's less expensive to essentially lease the furnishings (and offer them to the buyer for purchase) than to actually buy the furnishings permanently.

Bench chairs add a casual feel to this dining area, which is partially separated from the living room by a glass fireplace. Photo courtesy of Dressed Design.

Staging is influential because professional interior designers, trained in layout, form, flow, function, unify a home into a harmonious, desirable living space. It helps buyers visualize their own lifestyle in the home, as well as sets a specific, desirable emotional tone.

Staging is indeed raging in Park City. From fun and funky bunkrooms to formal living rooms, grand dining areas, designer kitchens and sexy "after-hours" lounge and bars, staged homes prompt buyers to vividly picture themselves comfortably living in a specific property.

Staged homes aren't just for buyers. We hope visiting Dressed Design's 3,000-square-foot office in Park City, or local staged homes, will inspire a wealth of ideas for current homeowners to fold into, or refresh, their own home interior design. (Also, check out Handle Restaurant for more design ideas from Dressed Design professionals.)

Recommended Stories For You