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Sellers: Don’t Get Caught Up in the “HGTV Effect”

February 10, 2010

Let me start by saying I love HGTV for the very fact alone that it has helped educate the public masses about the power of preparing and presenting a home when it’s on the market sale; otherwise known as Home Staging. (My disclaimer 😉 

However, a word to Seller’s to be wary of getting caught up in what has lovingly been dubbed “The HGTV Effect“.  similar to the “CSI Effect” of  Judicial Juries believing that DNA samples can be resolved and fingerprints matched within a few minutes. The HGTV Effect is the misconception that an entire house can be upgraded, Staged and transformed for $2,000.  While these shows do an excellent  job of showing what can be done, it also does not show what has not been OR what goes into GETTING all these things done.

Case in point: One show might show three rooms that have been transformed and at the end of the show a breakdown might be presented as something like, “Paint was $295.00, Flooring was $630.00 while lighting was $75.00 and draperies and new bedding were only $45.00….”  You get the point.  What is NOT shown in these totals are the cost of  moving trucks, equipment and tool rentals, carpentry fees, and labor.  Think about how much TIME is spent shopping and researching all those “great finds” as well as the labor to design, paint, install, cut, haul, etc… This doesn’t even touch other needs that Stagers in the REAL WORLD must cover such as insurance requirements, additional labor, movers, gas, etc….  Now, I’m not saying that a home can’t be Staged for $2,000.  What I am saying is; be realistic and educated about what  Professional Home Staging  really entails. Many may even offer smaller options for smaller budgets or Consultations for the Do-It-Yourself Home Owner.


It is also the misconception that ALL of this work can be completed in a 30 minute time-frame. OK, not 30 minutes, but you get the point.  Upgrades and repairs will take up to several weeks to complete depending on the amount needed for your home to compete for top-dollar in your market. Also consider your timeline:  some Home Staging Company’s will complete installations within just one day, other’s might take 2-3 depending on the amount of work and the square footage to be Staged.  Some Companies might require a 1-2 week period to schedule an installation, while others might be able to fit you in “this week.”

Research and interview several Home Staging Companies that service your area and as always take into consideration that you may very well “get what you pay for”. You might even consider reading this post to know what to look for when hiring a Professional Home Stager. However, once your homework is done, be confident in knowing that you’ve made the right decision about the Home Staging Company you have selected and the exceptional outcome it will produce.

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