Last month I posted a staging dilemma asking what you would do if you were tasked with staging a home for sellers reluctant to tone down their color-crazy home complete with turquoise kitchen and hot pink living room.
In this scenario, before you had a chance to address the color, the homeowner stated that they get many compliments and knew they didn’t want to paint.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to comment on that post. (Read the entire dilemma and all comments here.)
As an expert home stager it’s your job to educate the homeowner about the importance of color and how it must be used differently in a home you live in and a product you’re selling.
In this scenario I would wait until the end of the consultation to talk about their colors so I wouldn’t risk having them resist my advice for the entire session. It’s important to build up the client’s trust and confidence in you over the time you spend with them.
When the timing was right I would remind the homeowners that while their paint colors work well for them, decorating a home to sell is the art of creating an environment that the maximum number of potential buyers will fall in love with.
I would tell them that buyers will be more influenced by color than anything else and selling with such a strong color scheme would be very risky. With colors like hot pink and turquoise, buyers would be distracted, wondering how their furniture and art would work in the space.
Peggy’s comment on the original post was perfect, “I would share in their excitement about the vivid and wonderful color choices they have made for themselves because after all, that’s just one of the many perks of home ownership – the freedom to paint any room any color your heart desires! I would quickly follow up with, “Hey, why not entice buyers by offering them the same home ownership perk you have so enjoyed? Let’s start them out with a more neutral palette so that they will be able to use their own imagination just like you did when you bought this beautiful home!”
I also love the comment left by Nancy which truly demonstrates what can happen when clients don’t listen to the advice of a professional home stager.
She wrote, “A newbie stager asked me to accompany her on one of her first consultations at a semi-friend’s house. When you stepped inside the two story foyer and great room were painted a faux marble in lime green, baby blue, lavender, and pink. The painting extended through all the public rooms. With something resembling horror, I listened to the newbie saying she understood the sellers were not going to repaint because it turned out they had paid a local artist over 50K to do the faux painting. They made all of the other changes we recommended and it did help, but not enough. It has been almost a year and the house is still on the market,” she says. “The newbie has closed her business saying she is no longer convinced staging makes a difference. I still have nightmares about those walls and listening to her ‘support’ her clients by assuring them the walls would not matter all that much to a sale.”
By the way another thing I like about Nancy’s story is that it demonstrates why it’s so key that we give our clients the best advice we can. It’s sometimes hard to recommend they let go of something they really like, but it is our job to nudge them in that direction when it’s in their best interest. Naturally, what they do after that is up to them and they will live with the consequences.
Thanks again for taking the time to comment on the original business dilemma post. We all have so much to learn from each other! Please continue to share your thoughts and stories about color here!
Home stagers, if you’d like to learn more about using color while staging a home, check out the Staging Diva Ultimate Color Guide. It’s full of useful advice and will save you tons of time trying to sort through the thousands of color possibilities because I give you my top picks and when to use them.
Debra Gould, The Staging Diva®
President, Six Elements Inc. Home Staging
Debra Gould knows how to make money as a home stager and she developed the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program to teach others how to earn a living doing something they love.