Old School Thinking: Personal Photos Do NOT Make Your House Feel More Like "HOME" While You Are Selling.

By
Home Stager with Stage a Star Staging & Consulting Services

Thanks to HGTV and many other media articles on home staging, Sellers are starting to understand the importance of removing their personal photos as part of the overall preparing their home for the real estate market.  However, I've still noticed an awful lot of personal photos in our MLS when I check out the local listings.   So what gives?



Old School Thinking:  Often it is very difficult for Realtors to tell their Sellers that the personal photos have got to go.  Sellers can be very attached and proud of their grand displays of their kids and extended families. On the other hand, one of the old school thinking I have heard many times is to leave the photos up because buyers want to see who lives there and it feels more like "home".


This simply is not true.  Don't buy into that old school thinking.  The way houses are marketed and shown today are completely different than 5-10 years ago.


 

Sellers MUST take themselves out of the picture.  If you walked into a house with a large display of these gorgeous Olan Mills photos I'm showing here (and I'm being sarcastic folks!)would you be distracted?  You'd probably be taking a trip down memory lane instead of remembering those great selling features. 

 

 

The same stands true for those beautiful up to date baby/family photos and wall collages. Yes, they distract too!

 

 

Think of it this way:   How would Buyers feel when they came to view your home?  You want them to connect and feel like the home could be theirs.  With all the photos, they'll feel like a GUEST and that they are intruding.  Buyers also get distracted by trying to figure out who lives there and why they might be selling. 


Remember:  "Distraction" equals forgetting about your house and all it has to offer. It's the kiss of death because those buyers just walked out your door and will forget your house completely as they view 10+ more that day. Or worse, buyers do remember the house...."Oh yeah, is that the fifty million photo crazy house? What did that one look like? I only remember all those pictures."

 

Bottom Line:  Pack those photos up.  Let the house be the "STAR"and on DISPLAY...NOT the people who live there.  Doing so will get you one step closer to a successful sale!

 

Posted by

Teresa Meyer is the Owner and Lead Staging Designer at Stage a Star, Cincinnati's Premiere Real Estate Staging company located in Cincinnati, Ohio. Teresa is an Accredited Staging Professional and recently awarded 2011 Midwest Stager Of The Year.  She is a member of RESA, Real Estate Staging Association, RESA Instructor and currently is the State of Ohio RESA President.   Teresa can be reached at 513-379-5488 or by email: teresameyer@fuse.net to answer your questions about the staging process and looks forward to assisting you in preparing and staging your house for the Cincinnati real estate market.

     

Stage A Star provides home staging services to Hamilton county Ohio, Butler county Ohio, Warren County, Ohio, Clermont county Ohio, West Chester, OH., Liberty Twp, OH., Mason, OH., Fairfield Twp., OH., Monroe, OH., Hyde Park, OH., Loveland, OH., Maineville, OH., Morrow, OH., Deer Park, OH., Indian Hill, OH., and surrounding Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky areas.

 

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Comments 18 New Comment

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Rainmaker
565,341
Hella Mitschke Rothwell
Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker
(808) 226-1095 or (831) 626-4000

How about "senior" sellers who don't leave when the house is shown? I have been on several showings where they are there, oxygen tank hooked up, etc. I'm not making fun here; I know for some it's a major hardship to leave the house. However, it only makes the prospective buyer uncomfortable and they can't leave fast enough. Happened to me several times.

January 13, 2010 07:52 PM
Rainmaker
814,175
J. Philip Faranda
Broker-Owner
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY
I guess I'll be the dissenting voice. Too much of anything I'd bad, but a few pictures make a house a home in my view. I don't see how you can hide the presence of children either.
January 14, 2010 06:03 PM
Rainer
37,059
Larkin Hathaway
REALTOR Salesperson, ABR , SFR, GRI
Local Hawaii Real Estate

Great post!  I agree the personal effects in a house are VERY distracting to the Buyer & sometimes the Buyer's agent also.

January 14, 2010 07:36 PM
Rainer
144,219
Trisha Pennington
Coldwell Banker Reilly & Sons

Once again a great post, even as an agent I get distracted!

January 14, 2010 09:54 PM
Rainmaker
647,221
Barbara Hensley
Homes for Sale in Rockwall County, Texas
RE/MAX Properties

Tell sellers to leave those personal photos displayed...IF they want to distract the prospective buyers away from the details of their home.  Good post!

September 30, 2010 04:07 PM
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Teresa Meyer

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