Real estate agents are always looking for new ways to entice potential buyers to make an offer on their particular homes. Instead of adopting a professional approach of relying on statistics such as room sizes, taxes, and age of the home, many agents want to appeal to the buyer’s emotional side.
Years ago it was almost laughable that every home on the market had bread baking when a potential buyer was brought through. This rather odd odor was supposed to magically bring thoughts of his or her childhood home to the potential buyer and cause the potential buyer to immediately put in an offer to purchase the house. For many potential buyers whose mothers did not bake, this unusual odor merely caused a question, what are they trying to hide?
We have now moved on to a new gimmick called staging. Professional stagers will come into a home for sale and fix it so it looks appealing to potential buyers. They do this by removing any personal pictures, awards, or other personal items that may make the home look like it was actually occupied by human beings. The stagers remove what they consider as clutter and extra furniture, moving the remaining furniture into positions that they believe are more desirable and pleasing to the potential buyer. If you live on the West Coast, the stagers may even hire actors to portray the family who lives in this home. These actors are given scripts so that they can professionally show each room.
For those of us who do not like to be conned in any way, the staging just seems wrong. When I look at a home for sale that still has furniture but has no personal items from the owners I wonder if the home is a safe house used by the police or for federal witness protection programs. It is way beyond time for the real estate industry to recognize that the buyer of today is well-educated and highly informed about the process of buying a home. You are, after all, you bought this book.