When a home hits the market for sale and it's vacant, it can be a beautiful thing. Why? Put simply the home owner and potential buyers do not have to negotiate a move in and out date. Their only focus is getting the deal to the closing table. But how is that done? And to answer this is to say careful planning and understanding of what it means to a buyer to see a vacant home.
Oh, but be aware a buyer may see a vacant home and think the seller is desperate, highly motivated and out of options. There are several reasons why a home is vacant too and some of these reasons can scare or make a buyer wary. Just look at these articles that warn buyers about vacant homes:
A vacant home is simply an unoccupied home. No one lives there. Not the owner nor a tenant.
Take a look at these current Westchester, New York listings that are in my neck of the woods. They are vacant. Think about whether or not you would book an appointment to see the homes. Then ask yourself if seeing the home furnished would help encourage you to book an appointment.
Staging a vacant home can help ease the nerves of buyers and can be done with pictures, virtual, and actual objects. And staging, in my opinion, is important as it can help to do two things:
Get More Buyers Into the Home
Drive Up The Purchase Price
Attracting buyers to a home can be tricky and it is essential to figure it out. And I think it is safe to say that sellers want to pocket what the home is worth if not a little more. And, with that said, sellers ought to keep in mind that homes that are staged and even occupied often get higher bids than those that sit vacant.
Often times a seller will have to help buyers picture how a layout can work. This can be done with staging.
Virtual Staging: This is when a home get a computer-generated look to entice buyers to book an appointment to see the home.
Photos of Home When Lived in: Before a seller moves out they may opt to take pictures of the home before they remove all their belongings.
Furniture Rentals: Finding a company that offers furniture rental packages (fees and terms will apply) is also an option that sellers can take.
Consignment Furniture: People trying to sell can take advantage of finding inexpensive pieces to make the house looked more lived-in versus vacant. You could also offer the furniture to your home buyers.
Closeout Furniture: A seller, if they are lucky enough to find a closeout, will be able to get a deal on brand new furniture and accessories to make their home more attractive to potential buyers.
And yes I know what you are thinking....all this stuff sounds like it is going to cost me!!! And you are correct. It will. But if it makes you more money or gets you to sell your home faster....is it worth it??? Plus if you purchase the pieces versus rent the pieces you could offer to sell those pieces too to recoup some of the expenses of placing them in the home in the first place. Or better yet a seller can offer it with the home as a nice enticing incentive.
But keep in mind there are always exceptions to the rule. Some homes that are staged do not sale and others that are not staged do sale. Staging is not the answer. Its just a factor. Many other things come into play like photos taken, seller motivation, asking price, and so forth.
J. Philip Real Estate is Westchester & Putnam's premier independent brokerage. Founded in 2005, the firm has grown from a single broker to a strong organization of well over 80 associates despite the housing downturn. The team's commitment to results and client advocacy, as well as our focus on technology and innovation, have positioned us as the "go to" brokerage for area buyers and sellers.