By Duncan Fremlin, Broker, RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd. In 1987 when I was first licensed to sell real estate, the idea of staging a property consisted of clearing away the shoes in the hallway so the buyers wouldn’t trip over them. I exaggerate of course but it was a simpler time. Once the market discovered the art of staging, it took off like a bat out of hell.
My first experience with the value of the “presentation” was many years ago and involved a house in Leslieville that I hired to sell. The seller had covered his walls with pretty much his entire collection of original paintings. Before going to market, we discussed the effect this might have on the sale. We thought it might distract the buyers and divert attention away from the many wonderful features of the house.
As it turns out, we didn’t touch the art and the listing received a lot of attention from the real estate community. In my my business, this is a good thing. The house sold quickly and for a lot of money.
I’ve often wondered what the buyer thought when they arrived to see bare walls. The transformation was remarkable.
Now of course, art as a sales tool is de rigeur. We use all kinds of other tools to enhance our listings. It is autumn and the harvest in full swing so the lovely smell of pumpkin pie is a winner when the open house begins.
Acoustic guitars (and even banjos) carefully displayed in the living room or family room (never place a banjo in a bedroom) are now considered a necessary item in a staged house. Have you walked through an open house and wondered what happened to the TV?
If you have a living room wall in need of something special and your Van Gough is just not large enough, you can always call the Art Gallery of Ontario and ask if you can rent a $36,000.00 John Brown original. The rate is $1,360.00 per month. I’m just saying. You do have options.
One more important thing to remember. Harvest the dandelions in your front yard and plant flowers from the local nursery. As the buyer arrives and begins the walk towards your porch, the enhanced “curb appeal” will set the tone nicely for the rest of your artfully-presented house.
Duncan Fremlin, Broker
RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd.
firstname.lastname@example.org or 416-716-3257