KATU’s 2 On Your Side: Home Staging in Portland Oregon

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By Angelica Thornton and KATU Web Staff

PORTLAND, Oregon. – If you are trying to sell your home this summer, you have some tough competition. More and more houses are on the market, and they are not selling as fast as they once did.

KATU: Home Staging in Portland Oregon with Room Solutions

That is why home staging is on the rise. Some say it could help you sell your house faster without forcing you to drop the price.

Maureen Bray, a home staging expert, has seen it happen time and again.

When she walked into a 1917 Craftsman Bungalow in northeast Portland recently, she saw potential but the problems stood out.

“Everything about it is great – except that it’s completely empty,” she said.

Dining Room Home Staging in Portland Oregon
Hover over image for “Before” view

Buyer after buyer had walked away bored, not interested in the blank walls and sparsely furnished rooms.

“It felt plain and bland, a little too bland,” Bray said.

The owner went too far in her mission to declutter. Bray’s job is to create the “wow” factor, which is the key to home staging.

“A buyer will make the decision in the first 10 seconds when they walk in a door whether this is a house they’re going to like,” she said. “So we have to capture them immediately.”

First she gets rid of the eyesores, like a modern coffee table (pictured below) that does not quite fit with the look of the home and which is out of proportion with the scale of the room.

Living Room Home Staging in Portland Oregon
Hover over image for “Before” view

Then she rearranges furniture, like moving a bed that is at an unusual angle (see picture below).

Bedroom Home Staging in Portland Oregon
Hover over image for “Before” view

She also adds accessories and props and creates scenes throughout the home.

While it may look like simple decorating, Bray said it is not. Decorating is personalizing while staging is de-personalizing.

“It’s trying to make the home appeal to as many people as possible,” she said.

Bray ran into different challenges at a southeast Portland home. It was completely empty.

Though the owner, Roy Jacobson, renovated the entire house using top-of-the-line features and appliances, potential buyers told him they just could not picture themselves living in it.

“They were a little confused as to what the function is of each room,” he said.

Bray furnished the rooms and Jacobson was very happy with the results.

Bathroom Home Staging in Portland Oregon
Hover over image for “Before” view

“I would never have thought to lay things out the way it is,” he said. “I’m just blown away by it.”

So were the buyers. Jacobson got a full-price offer the next day.

Home staging in the Portland area costs between $500 and $3,000, but the investment can really pay off. Realtors say it will not only sell your home faster, but can increase the sale price between 7 and 10 percent.

Realtors say that in this market simply putting up a “For Sale” sign and pulling out the vacuum cleaner does not work anymore. You have to play up a home’s best features and minimize the worst. Some sellers just do not have the vision to do it themselves.

Home Staging Tips

  • Make sure your home is sparkling clean.
  • Let the light in.
  • Get rid of odors. Don’t light candles or bake cookies because some people might not like the smell.
  • Send your pets away – a barking dog or clingy cat is not going to help your cause.

note: AM Northwest also ran this story and aired the home staging video feature.