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Stage Right: Why Full-On Home Staging is Important to Any Successful Sale and How Kevin+Jonathan’s Final Detailing and Marketing is Vital to It

Staging a home for sale is as essential as it is potentially extraordinary. While staging has become the norm, proper staging that pays attention to a property’s best attributes has the ability to transform a mediocre property into one that gets top dollar. 


Don’t Let This Be You:

“I don’t want to stage, I think it’s pointless,”

Unsuccessful would-be seller whose property never made it to market and never sold.

Staging’s purpose is to wow and inspire someone into action. Hiring a gifted designer and stager to transform your vacant property may be expensive yes but it is an essential ingredient in showing people how they can live differently and better than they do now. To forgo staging will cost far more in a diminished sale price. A good stager’s art will capture and appeal to the best possible buyers on a visual, visceral and emotional level.

And while we may end up with bids all over the spectrum from $5,000-$200,000, if it were us we would spend every dime we could on staging and preparation because it’s just that important. The minute you start negotiating the price the quality you get will suffer as will the sale price. But knowing which stager to go with is where we come in as we are hands-on and insist on creating the right look, touch and feel.

We Are Truly Hands-On: It Takes a Village (Or a Small Fleet of Trucks)

One of our more memorable sales that set a high-water mark for Noe Valley was one where we had a tight two-day timeline to have the stagers complete a 2-month preparation process with their furniture, art and accessories. We has just 2 days before Vanguard Properties’ noted photographer was due to shoot the property for our marketing collateral and property photos.

It was a firm deadline.

When we came to check and see what was going on we saw that something was awry. Their usual aesthetic, professional and polished look was replaced by some New Mexico jamboree. The stagers had done an entire day’s work that wasn’t pretty. Undeterred we took action and politely (but firmly) reminded the stagers that this wasn’t the look our properties are known for, wasn’t up to their own standards and was something that had to be resolved within 24 hours.

The next day, there were 4 large trucks parked in front, 50 people running in and out of the property and by the time they were done there was only one piece of furniture from the previous day still onsite. The property proceeded to show incredibly well and the sellers, who had come by to see after we had left at the end of first day of staging said that they thought the initial staging had been, ‘terrible,’ but knew that we would take care of it. Indeed we did.

In the end the approach culminated in a sale that received 7 offers and was $300,000+ above the sellers’ expectations, $200,000 above an early preemptive offer and one that allowed us to meet 4 sets of future successful buyers.

Some Examples From Our Listings from Three Of Our Favorite San Francisco Stagers…

396 Guerrero.

Elegantly Updated Mission Dolores Perch

(Listed + In Contract, April 2017)

In Contract

Stager: Birch + Tailor

241 Judson. 

Sunny Sunnyside House 

(Listed + Sold, March 2016)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Birch + Tailor

375 15th Avenue

Sunny + Updated Richmond Condo 

(Listed + Sold within 7 days, May 2017)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: JV Staging

140 S. Van Ness, No. 1022 

Sunny Inner Mission Condo 

(Listed + Sold, October 2016)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: JV Staging

JV Staging

1669 Grove 

NoPa Top-Floor Victorian  

(Listed + Sold, July 2016)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: JV Staging

2346 18th Avenue 

Inner Parkside Impeccable Home  

(Listed, Pending, May 2017)

In Contract For Over Asking

Stager: JV Staging

374 Prague 

Surprising + Updated Excelsior Home  

(Listed + Sold, February 2017)

In Contract For Over Asking

Stager: JV Staging

1617 Church 

Noe Valley Charmer  

(Listed + Sold, May 2015)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Arthur McLaughlin

Movie: With Mr. Raffi

175 Bluxome, No. 327 

Rebooted SoMa Loft  

(Listed + Sold, June 2015)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Arthur McLaughlin

Movie: With Mr. Raffi

913 Central 

Luxe Garden Condominium  

(Listed + Sold, June 2016)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Arthur McLaughlin

436 30th St. 

Chic Noe Valley Condominium  

(Listed + Sold, June 2016)

Sold For Over Asking

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Arthur McLaughlin

8 Octavia, No. 304 

Hayes Valley Modern Living  

(Listed + Sold, March 2017)

Sold For Over Asking

Stager: Arthur McLaughlin

True Professional Feedback

It was nice meeting you both on Saturday PM at your open house…

I must say that your entire property from stem to stern, showed Spectacular!  Was it staged, or were the furnishings the Seller’s?  In any event, everything was extremely well balanced – the pictures, art work, mirrors, window treatments, lighting fixtures, interior & exterior paint jobs, back yard, and the total ambiance that the two of you created in your presence with your cordiality & friendly personalities, made this one of the best open house presentations that I have ever experienced in 40 years as a Realtor!

Needless to say, your asking price is perfectly priced and it is most likely that you will receive multiple offers!  (*Although I do not have any buyers, would you kindly inform me of your final sales price?)

All the best to you both!

— Long-time Noe Valley Realtor


Seller Feedback

We were very happy with Kevin as our buying agent when we bought our Noe Valley house. We got a great house in a great neighborhood and we weren’t even the highest bidders at the time.

When it came time to sell, however, we didn’t know how it would go with Kevin and Jonathan because we only worked with them as buying agents. But as soon as we told them we wanted to sell our house they started working on it right away even though our sale was 5 months away. They worked with us, our constraints and schedules to come up with plans, options and directions on how to make the house even more appealing.

We were skeptical at some of the suggestions at first and their insistence that we go to market because we had unsolicited offers that were very tempting. We chose to go ahead and place our faith in Kevin and Jonathan and we’re glad that we did.

They took care of issues that came up (like the stager’s weird choices the first day they were there) and went out of their way by doing things like talking with us about questions we had late into the night, getting supplies for the house and giving us their opinions and advice on how to complete disclosure materials. Kevin and Jonathan were engaged with us and selling our home every day, which helped the process tremendously. Kevin and Jonathan’s work ethic and dedication is bolstered by their sense of design and style. They turned our charming home into a sophisticated and elegant house you’d see in a catalog.    

Selling a house can be a long and intense process that can be frustrating at times but the results we got from Kevin and Jonathan’s patience, creativity and hard work beat our expectations by a long shot.

— More-than-Satisfied Noe Valley Sellers

Vanguard Properties believes information to be correct but has not verified this information and assumes no legal responsibility for its accuracy. Buyers should investigate the property and any issues or questions to their own satisfaction before proceeding with a purchase.

San Francisco Real Estate Experts +1-415.297-7462 (Kevin) +1-415.215.4393 (Jonathan)