Home Staging

What does ‘Home’ mean and why we need to feel a positive emotion towards a space to call it home?

I wrote a blog last year about Mindfulness and our homes.  How we connect to our homes, not just physically but emotionally also.  What makes home a ‘home’? 

Home is described to be a place where we feel most comfortable and happy.  It does not necessarily have to be a house made form bricks, it could simply be a log cabin in the woods, maybe ‘home’ is back with your parents, it really can be anywhere for anyone but the one thing all these things have in common is that they make is feel a certain way that no other place does…..comfort, happiness, safe, contentment.

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It is true what people say ‘Home is where the heart is’ and is something I truly believe in.   When we go searching for our next home, we often describe our feedback after a viewing to others as having ‘the feeling’ or ‘not having the feeling’ as the case maybe.  This in real terms to me simply means we couldn’t connect with the house, or it did or did not give us that homely feel, a place we can see ourselves living and be at home.  Of course, we are all different and what someone might consider homely maybe different to someone else but the important thing is that are homes appeal to as many people as possible when deciding to sell up and move on.

If you therefore walk into a space and it doesn’t uplift you, inspire you, make you feel happiness in most cases, people will just walk away and move onto the next property that does give them ‘that feeling’.  Now of course a new place can take time to become a Home but we have to have ‘the feeling’ that inspires us to one day be home, a place we could see ourselves living.

So how do we achieve this?  Most buyers can’t see through the clutter or can’t visualise the space properly especially empty rooms so when selling we have to give them those ideas of how they too could live in that space.  We therefore need to de-personalise, de-clutter and re-focus the space to help give them that inspiration. Remember they are only in the property for a short time, and it is said that most people make up their minds in the first few minutes when viewing a house.  So, taking these 3 steps is vital part of the Home Staging process.  When we talk about re-focusing a room it means looking at the space and highlighting its best asset so that becomes the focus of the room.  A Home Stager can help achieve this.

Selling and buying homes is not just a financial commitment to most it is also an emotional one.  The more we feel a positive emotion towards a property the more likely we are to commit to buying it.  Once, we decided to put our house on the market but we weren’t totally ready financially, hadn’t got our mortgage in place etc but were just after valuations at this point.  An estate agent said to me “just put it on the market and if things don’t work out just take it off, no obligation, no harm done”.  My response to this was “but its not as simple as that.  You’re forgetting people’s emotions here.  Our emotions and so too the buyers.  What if someone views it and loves it then we end saying we can’t proceed, they’d be heartbroken and I’d feel awful!”  Moving house is a big decision and can be one of the most stressful things to go through.

Home staging can certainly help with taking that stress out the situation.  Knowing that you have done what you can to present your home to as many buyers as possible and giving you the best chance of a quick sale for the price you want.  Obviously, there are no guarantees for anything in life and the housing market will have an effect on things also but selling your home is different than living in your home.  Its about presentation.  Sellers might say “but they’re not buying the furniture or the wall colour, they’re buying the house so why should I bother, the house should speak for itself etc”.  You’d think this would be the case but for most it just isn’t.  Put it this way, if you’re going for an interview for a new job and you had great CV lots of experience and qualifications so on paper looked great.  However, on the day of the interview you turned up unshaven, tracksuit on basically no presentation to appeal to those conducting the interview then what do you think their first impressions would be?  Now we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, absolutely not but when you’re trying to sell something, whether that be yourself in an interview for a job or when selling your home, first impressions do count and do make an impression.

As a designer one of the services I can offer is to present your home for sale.  I can go through each room making recommendations to improve the presentation.  It does not necessarily have to be an expensive process, I will ‘Home Shop’ as much as possible.  Using your current belongings but presenting them better.  Maybe just editing out things and suggest storing them away or better still packing them up for your new home!  In some cases it may need more than that, a lick of paint or a patio cleaned but either way I will work with you, your budget, and time available to achieve the best results with the resources we have.   To find out more about Home Staging and whether you feel you could benefit from carrying out this process please check out my Home Staging section and/or get in touch and I’ll gladly help in anyway I can.  Even if you’re not sure if your home needs this service, I can still come and visit you, all initial consultations in my local area are free!

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