One of the most interesting things to me about the real estate business is that you always have to think about the short term and the long term. For example, when I design our rehabs, I always think about what kinds of designs are trending now, but I also keep in mind that the design choices I make have to be timeless. I don’t want buyers walking in and thinking, “Man, this is pretty, but we’re going to have to gut the whole place and redo it in five years.”
Staging is the same way. And while Tarek and I prefer to hire professional stagers, it pays to understand a little bit about home staging as a house flipper. The first thing to understand about home staging is that you need to stage for “right now.” So, while the weather is warm and the days are long, you can take advantage of a few really great summer staging tips to sell your flip houses faster.
Stage the Back Patio
Whether you have a big back deck, a small covered patio, a pool, a fire pit, or any other attractive features in the backyard of one of your flips, now is the time to feature them. Talk to your stagers about bringing in some cool exterior curtains for a covered back patio, and don’t forget to put some pool chairs and a big umbrella out on the pool deck.
As people walk through the house and into the backyard, you want them to picture themselves hanging out back here with friends and family. They should be thinking of how relaxing it’ll be to take a dip in the pool after work or to have a few friends over on a mild summer evening for cocktails in the backyard. Make this area a real oasis, and you’ll notice a lot more offers.
Schedule Open Houses in the Early Afternoon and Let the Sun Shine In
Scheduling your open houses during the hottest part of the day might seem kind of crazy, but there’s a method to my madness. You want the house to feel like a haven, and you want people to see it at its sunniest. So crank up the A/C and open all the curtains. This way, people can see how much natural light the house has and how bright it is in the afternoons. They’ll also get a good feeling for how cool the HVAC system keeps the house, even at the hottest part of the day.
Bring the Outside In
While everyone wants to escape the summer heat indoors, your buyers aren’t going to want to walk into a house that feels like a sterile cave. So, in addition to opening up the curtains and letting all of that wonderful natural light in, be sure to stage some potted plants around the house, as well. I love this natural touch because it reminds people of summer without reminding them of being sweaty and sticky.
As always, when you talk to your stagers about what they’re going to do for your flip houses, trust their judgment. If they don’t think that a certain plant is a good idea, then it probably isn’t. Talk with them about getting a bright summery feel while keeping the place cool as a cucumber, and you’ll be on your way to great summer staging.
And, if you’re doing your own staging, remember the number-one rule for design and décor—create a space potential buyers can see themselves living in. Keep your personality out of it and stick with cool designer tips like these. Good luck!