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Continued: Staging a home to sell

  • Article by: BARBARA WILLIAMS , The (Bergen County, N.J.) Record
  • Last update: May 23, 2014 - 3:13 PM

Finally, neutralize colors throughout the house. That vibrant teal in your daughter’s bedroom? The I’m-so-tired-of-living-in-a-beige-house-purple you painted the little bathroom? Douse them with off-white.

Linda Stamker, an agent with Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty in Fort Lee, N.J., is convinced that staging a Cresskill, N.J., home is what helped sell it after it had been on the market for a year.

“It was brand new and empty,” Stamker said. “The bedrooms looked really small, and buyers couldn’t even tell if a bed would fit in them.

“When we got the listing in January — after it had been on the market for a year — we convinced the builder to put some furniture in it,” Stamker said. “It sold in a week for $100 over the $688,000 asking price.”

The price had been reduced a few times from the original $797,800, which Stamker acknowledges was instrumental in selling the house. But staging also played a pivotal role in moving it so quickly, she said.

“You want to give it some warm touches — put a book on a bed or a magazine on a coffee table,” Stamker said. “I would say 99 percent of sellers do their own staging, working with their real estate agent. But when a house is completely empty, you might need to bring some furniture and items in.”

Costs for renting items through a company can range from $2,500 to $5,000, depending on how much furniture and accessories are used and the length of time the house is on the market.

“Our prices range from about $300 to $350 a month per room,” said Fierstat, from Cort Furniture. “Let’s face it, a home needs to be priced right to sell, but staging can definitely make a difference.”

Sapuppo, who sold her home in four months, attributes the relatively quick sale mainly to staging.

“My home was the type of house where teenagers grew up with friends — happy and comfy,” Sapuppo said.

“But Roberta had a vision when she looked at it, and when she was done, the house just flowed. She made the whole place more open, so it looked like we were living there yet it wasn’t personalized. Kind of amazing.”


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