The Art of Showing

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Home staging reveals the way in which living in a home is different than marketing a home.

Story by Ann Butenas

Home staging. Those are two words defined in different terms by different people. Is it akin to interior design? Is it a method of cleaning and decluttering? Is it where professionals impose their own unique styles in your home? Or is it simply a good investment to potentially get your home sold swiftly and for the best price?

The concept of home staging has come a long way over the years, and many real estate professionals rely on professional home stagers to assist sellers with expediting the process of getting their homes sold by appealing to prospective buyers. Home staging takes away the emotional connection of the seller and invites the emotional connection of the buyer.

Sharon Grisolia, Certified Home Stager, owner of Star Staging by Sharon and President of the Kansas City chapter of the Real Estate Stagers Assocation, offered some insight as to the exact definition of home staging and what it means for sellers, buyers or even people who simply want a new look for their home.


Before and after images of the staging by Sharon Grisolia.


KCH&S: What is home staging?

SHARON: Home staging is the art of redesigning, decluttering and redecorating a residence for sale in order to make the best impression of the residence on potential buyers.

KCH&S: What does home staging involve?

SHARON: It involves a consultation with the homeowner and where I perform a thorough walk-through of the residence and visually map out a plan on how best to showcase every wonderful feature of the home. I then compile a report for the homeowner to initialize the plan. The report is made up of a list of recommended tasks the homeowner will need to complete prior to staging day, such as packing away their personal items or repurposing a furniture item. Finally, I stage the home or complete the objective of making their home stand out among the competition and attracting the greatest number of potential buyers. It really involves creating emotional connection points where buyers can visualize themselves living in the home.

KCH&S: How does home staging differ from interior design/decorating?

SHARON: Home staging is used to remove the individual’s character they have fashioned in their living space to make their house a home. Interior design is done to help create one’s personal interests and lifestyle to create a home for them.

KCH&S: What are the benefits of home staging?

SHARON: In today’s digital era, statistics show 95% of home buyers shop online first. By using a professional home stager, a homeowner is guaranteeing their home will stand out among the competition in the online photos. This creates more home buyer traffic and the more potential buyers you reach, the more swiftly you can sell your home and potentially for a higher price.

A professional home stager creates a home where potential buyers develop an emotional connection to the home once they step inside, allowing them to visualize themselves living there.

It is also very important to use a professional home stager because homeowners cannot look at their home objectively. They are too emotionally connected to their home and have a hard time with making changes to their home to better sell their property.

KCH&S: How can a home stager help someone who simply wants to redesign the interior of the home but not sell it?

SHARON: A home stager can help with furniture rearrangement and create the best possible flow through a space. A home stager can also offer tips on decor arrangement, wall color, carpet and furniture choices. For my clients, I am always current on today’s trends and styles. I recently worked with a couple who moved in together, bringing in two different decor styles. I was able to blend their styles and create a compatible living space they were happy with.

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