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Old 19.03.2016, 07:52
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Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

Does anyone have experience to work as a HOUSE-STAGER?

Basically, it means a property is semi redecorated/ reorganized to enhance a sale. By adding fresh neutral pieces and re-arranging existing furniture, it can give the little boost to increase sale possibilities.

Logistics:
1. Collection of ground piece furniture and decorating items.
2. Storage
3. Transportation
4. Fees

The bottom line is how much would people be willing to pay and how to calculate fair fees?

I recently looked at a property, which could have been interesting, but was full of sleezy shiny bedspreads and curtains. Not to mention, the disorder!

I couldn't stop thinking about how I could whip a little magic for this home owner and get his home sold! After 15 moves, I seem to have experience and talent ( so have been told...)

Is this a realistic side job in Switzerland? Thanks for your honest answers.
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Old 19.03.2016, 08:09
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

I, too, am a bit bemused at the state of properties being shown for sale. From clutter to downright disgusting messes, presenting a property in the best light doesn't seem to be the done thing here.

And I could go on and on about the lack of professional marketing by estate agents... For the 60k you pay them to sell your house you get two photos of the bathroom, snapped on a handy. Seriously?

My guess is that the property market is so illiquid that there has never been an incentive to do proper marketing. Sellers and buyers have been 'trained' to that expectation. From an estate agent's perspective, he will make a small fortune on the sale whether he does any work or not, so why bother?

I would think that a professional stager might be used when selling ultra high end properties. You might contact the agencies who deal in those, Engel and Volker, for instance, as they put out glossy brochures, etc, to fit that market segment.
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Old 19.03.2016, 10:54
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

I know someone who works in that business. It is not very lucrative.

I am of the opinion that empty properties sell better than furnished ones as it leaves things up to a potential buyer's imagination.
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Old 19.03.2016, 11:12
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

Otherwise known as the House Doctor.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_Doctor

I can't see the housing market here being vigorous enough to earn much, though as Meloncollie says the high end properties might want to use such a service. But then again properties that expensive ought to look like show homes anyway.
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Old 19.03.2016, 16:31
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

If people have spent too long watching M6 Stéphane Plaza, they will want to go for a bland, white, sludge or café latté approach to "depersonalise". One estate agent told us to move out + paint the entire house white (offered us his contact" who could do it at a respectable rate). Others said leave it as it is. If the buyers don't like it, they'll do work on it anyway. Most visitors plan on ripping the innards out & restyling to their won personal tastes. I think in France it is probably a lot cheaper so it works better as a concept but here there's less movement. We went for the repainting almost all over (but keeping some "focal points to add a distinguishing mark from other properties". I can see the point of staging as in putting in furniture better suited, in better condition etc but that would only work in places where the inhabitants have actually moved out. You can't have a family with 3 kids & 2 dogs living in a pristine environment for any length of time & it seems it takes a lot longer to sell here than apparently it takes on tv in France. They seem to have a certain % of the sales price as their guide for such makeovers.

Do you have actual qualifications in interior decorating because you need to be qualified to walk a dog here let alone anything else. I think you should look at as many estate agents sites +removal firms as you can to see what they already offer & contact those local to you.
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Old 19.03.2016, 22:00
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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Do you have actual qualifications in interior decorating because you need to be qualified to walk a dog here let alone anything else. I think you should look at as many estate agents sites +removal firms as you can to see what they already offer & contact those local to you.
Haha...if moving 15 times in 29 years in five countries helps, then I am qualified. Not really.

However, our high end estate agent recently presented me as an interior decorator to his clients. He sold three of our properties, in record time and continuously compliments me on my preparation for the viewings. The first property sold in TWO HOURS, the second in ONE MONTH and the third in TWO WEEKS.

The simple things can often make a big difference. Remove personal photos, retouched or clean dingy walls, meticulously clean light fixtures and light switches, eradicate unwanted odors, clear kitchen counters, buff the granite with polish and leave only an array of beautiful fruits and vegetables. Season-appropriate flowers and pops of color ( throw pillows) can help, as can mild fragrances. Re-organizing, re-purposing and cleaning can be transforming! Often, strategically placing little details, like golf clubs and Wellington Boots, may make the buyer imagine a life of leisure!

Naturally, few people actually live like this, but if you want to present your property in its very best light, it takes a bit of effort. Although cosmetic or glamour do not interest me, I do like CLEAN, ORDER, SCALE and HARMONY. I have viewed hundred of properties as we moved around the globe and believe the first impressions can have a big effect! It certainly did for me!

A lawyer friend of mine did this for years, after her husband's job took her out of state, so I know it can be done, but I was just wondering if anyone has done this in Switzerland. Yes??

Naturally, this is no substitute for professional design, once the object has been sold. And, all repairs should be done by professionals.

Last edited by arrow; 20.03.2016 at 00:01. Reason: Typo
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Old 19.03.2016, 22:05
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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Otherwise known as the House Doctor.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_Doctor

I can't see the housing market here being vigorous enough to earn much, though as Meloncollie says the high end properties might want to use such a service. But then again properties that expensive ought to look like show homes anyway.
Trust me, they do not.
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Old 19.03.2016, 22:47
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

I think a market for this might be there.
It's in its infancy, right now, due to the demand/supply ratio.
But already, properties aren't selling.

Like this one:
https://www.comparis.ch/immobilien/m.../show/13567984

They've now dropped the price by an incredible 400k.

I've not visited it - but as somebody already said: E+V do make some nice brochures.

So, my guess would be that the more the real-estate market "softens", the more differentiated professions around it we'll see.

BTW: does anybody know how much the various real-estate sites charge per ad?
Does it depend on the number of photos?
I've always puzzled when there were ads for houses and no photos from the inside.
That's a big "WTF?" for me...
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Old 19.03.2016, 22:56
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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I, too, am a bit bemused at the state of properties being shown for sale. From clutter to downright disgusting messes, presenting a property in the best light doesn't seem to be the done thing here.

And I could go on and on about the lack of professional marketing by estate agents... For the 60k you pay them to sell your house you get two photos of the bathroom, snapped on a handy. Seriously?

I would think that a professional stager might be used when selling ultra high end properties. You might contact the agencies who deal in those, Engel and Volker, for instance, as they put out glossy brochures, etc, to fit that market segment.
Couldn't agree more. The things one sees - loo seats up in the bathroom photos! How hard is it to put the loo seat down ? Bad feng shui anyway, lol !

The iffy bedspreads, the rooms overcrowded with furniture, the windows not cleaned. Often it is the little things.

If you worked on a %, but helped secure a rapid sale, I'm sure there could be a market for a service like this ...
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Old 19.03.2016, 22:57
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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I think a market for this might be there.
It's in its infancy, right now, due to the demand/supply ratio.
But already, properties aren't selling.

Like this one:
https://www.comparis.ch/immobilien/m.../show/13567984

They've now dropped the price by an incredible 400k.

I've not visited it - but as somebody already said: E+V do make some nice brochures.

So, my guess would be that the more the real-estate market "softens", the more differentiated professions around it we'll see.

BTW: does anybody know how much the various real-estate sites charge per ad?
Does it depend on the number of photos?
I've always puzzled when there were ads for houses and no photos from the inside.
That's a big "WTF?" for me...
1970's kitchen in a 1991 build, could only happen in CH
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Old 19.03.2016, 23:22
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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I think a market for this might be there.
It's in its infancy, right now, due to the demand/supply ratio.
But already, properties aren't selling.

Like this one:
https://www.comparis.ch/immobilien/m.../show/13567984

They've now dropped the price by an incredible 400k.

I've not visited it - but as somebody already said: E+V do make some nice brochures.

So, my guess would be that the more the real-estate market "softens", the more differentiated professions around it we'll see.

BTW: does anybody know how much the various real-estate sites charge per ad?
Does it depend on the number of photos?
I've always puzzled when there were ads for houses and no photos from the inside.
That's a big "WTF?" for me...

We were told the market had SOFTENED, and suggested to sell our current house for less than we had paid!!! In the end, we did not go with a big estate firm, but to a former car salesman, who works independently. He and I worked our magic, again. :-)) Excellent results.

Concerning the above mentioned house, it seems to have good bones. Our house had that same awful whitewashed ceiling and gray carpet upstairs Ceilings were spray painted semi-gloss white, with recessed lighting on a dimmer. ( Thank you Rob from EF!) Walls got a new finish of "weissputz" and were painted white. The carpet was replaced with oiled oak from HORNBACH by our son and a www.rentarentner.ch Together with finds from the local Bröcki, Ricardo, Fundgrübe IKEA AND INTERIO, the results were amazing. The curtains came from POTTERY BARN outlet in USA and the rods from HORNBACH.

Some people think this is cheap. I call it resourceful.

Like I said, house sold in TWO WEEKS.....

Here is a photo of the guest bedroom...looked very similar to the house in the link prior to renovation.
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Last edited by arrow; 19.03.2016 at 23:28. Reason: Add photo...
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Old 19.03.2016, 23:23
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

If only I had a quid for every Homegate ad that has this shower curtain and just love the Gaudi inspired bathroom I found on one ad...
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Old 19.03.2016, 23:42
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

Oh. My Gosh.

Before the buyers came to our house, I quickly removed the hideous swirly mirror with a built in 1980s Hollywood lamp.

Instead, I put this mirror and LED lamp. Both from Hornbach. There were also purple Hyacinths in the grey clay container, which provided a lovely scent and a pop of color. They are now dead, but doesn't matter, as the house sold!
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Old 19.03.2016, 23:46
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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Old 19.03.2016, 23:47
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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Old 19.03.2016, 23:52
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

Of course, painting ceilings, installing recessed lamps and laying a wooden floor are not part of STAGING! However, the Fundgrube IKEA bed, dresser, neutral pallette bedding, and Ricardo side tables were good finds and could calm down an otherwise unattractive room.


Well, in my humble opinion.....
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Old 20.03.2016, 07:23
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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We were told the market had SOFTENED, and suggested to sell our current house for less than we had paid!!! In the end, we did not go with a big estate firm, but to a former car salesman, who works independently. He and I worked our magic, again. :-)) Excellent results.

Concerning the above mentioned house, it seems to have good bones. Our house had that same awful whitewashed ceiling and gray carpet upstairs Ceilings were spray painted semi-gloss white, with recessed lighting on a dimmer. ( Thank you Rob from EF!) Walls got a new finish of "weissputz" and were painted white. The carpet was replaced with oiled oak from HORNBACH by our son and a www.rentarentner.ch Together with finds from the local Bröcki, Ricardo, Fundgrübe IKEA AND INTERIO, the results were amazing. The curtains came from POTTERY BARN outlet in USA and the rods from HORNBACH.

Some people think this is cheap. I call it resourceful.

Like I said, house sold in TWO WEEKS.....

Here is a photo of the guest bedroom...looked very similar to the house in the link prior to renovation.
So did you sell the house for more than you paid, or did you still make a loss.
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Old 20.03.2016, 07:36
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

While I agree with most posters above how badly many properties are presented there's something which is not considered: In Switzerland it’s expected from the buyer to upgrade the place according to his taste. For example to invest 30k in a new kitchen and then the wife of the new owner doesn’t like the dark color…
That’s why a 1990s kitchen is very seldom exchanged before the sale. Same for toilets and showers. According to local traditions the upgrading starts with the signing of the contract.
With this background I see not much future in the proposed business venture.
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Old 20.03.2016, 08:30
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Re: Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

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While I agree with most posters above how badly many properties are presented there's something which is not considered: In Switzerland it’s expected from the buyer to upgrade the place according to his taste. For example to invest 30k in a new kitchen and then the wife of the new owner doesn’t like the dark color…
That’s why a 1990s kitchen is very seldom exchanged before the sale. Same for toilets and showers. According to local traditions the upgrading starts with the signing of the contract.
With this background I see not much future in the proposed business venture.
Sorry, perhaps I have miscommunicated. This has nothing to do with changing bathrooms or kitchens. You are correct to say the new owner should do this according to their taste and budget.

Staging is something completely else. The intentions are to present the object in its very best light, so the prospective buyer can imagine themselves living there. It is a service which can be accomplished in an afternoon, or in one day, for a reasonable fee.

Even an unattractive bathroom can be made interesting by carefully storing the owners half used bottles and towels. Often, by folding a stack brand new white fluffy towels, adding a basket of fine soaps and placing a candle, the once bland room becomes a spa. These items, owned by me, are only for decorative purposes only.

So, instead of an owner needing to expend energy and money to prepare their house for the market, they pay for a service.

Think GREAT HOUSEKEEPER with SUPPLIES. ( not perks, darling :-)
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Old 20.03.2016, 09:02
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Staging Houses/Apartments as a job?

In the US, buyers expect this. It makes a huge difference in middle range houses. I know our agent did little things to our 3 year old house in the US and helped us get almost 25% over the original price just as the market was slowing.

So the thing here is how do you make buyers come to expect this in Switzerland, and how can you demonstrate the value to whoever hires you (agents, sellers, etc).

Talking to an agent like E&V might give you some perspective. Could you team up with someone, like the guy you worked with to sell your own house? Or seek out agents who've had slow sales. Me, i know nothing about house sales here - i know a little bit about marketing services and this is the tact I'd take. But i also know that the market is weird....still, your own experience suggests you might be on to something.

Like anything else translated to a new market, you have to try to create a need for the service...it could work.
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