Start & Run a Home Staging Business

Start & Run a Home Staging Business

by Dana J. Smithers

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Overview

Today's typical home-buyer wants minimal muss and fuss when it comes to settling into a new home. Many people have an idea of their "dream home," or keep a list of characteristics they want their new house to possess. Many of these sought-after characteristics are common to most home-buyers; but unfortunately for home-sellers, these characteristics are not always readily apparent in a house well lived-in. Many homeowners are beginning to realize that they could sell their house more quickly and effectively if they knew how to present it in a way that's more appealing to buyers. That's where you come in! Start&Run a Home Staging Business is the perfect step-by-step guide for anyone who wants to start their own business putting their design talents to use. This book provides tips for home staging itself, including making a room look more spacious and appealing to buyers, as well as marketing tips for making your expertise seem appealing to homeowners who may not be generating the amount of interest they need to sell their home. Home staging is a rapidly growing industry as homeowners realize their emotional investment in the arrangement of their home may not be what homeowners are looking for. Become part of the growing trend in home staging and put your skills on the market!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781770407343
Publisher: Self-Counsel Press, Inc.
Publication date: 02/24/2012
Series: Start & Run Business Series
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 168
Sales rank: 917,117
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Dana J. Smithers is a leading expert in home staging, and teaches through seminars and workshops across North America. She founded the PRES (Professional Real Estate Stager) Resource Centre. She was a founding member and instructor for the Canadian ReDesigners Association. She also owns Sun On My Back Redesigns and Empowered Women In Business.

Table of Contents

Introduction xiii 1 Getting Started 1 1. Determining If This Is the Right Business for You 1 1.1 Creative talents and physical abilities 1 1.2 Skills and attributes 2 2. Setting Your Goals 4 2.1 SMART goals 4 2.2 Determine your revenue streams 4 2 Developing Your Business Plan 7 1. What Goes into the Business Plan 7 1.1 Executive summary 8 1.2 Defining your vision and mission statements 8 1.3 History and background 10 1.4 Operations and description of the business 10 1.5 Market research and sales plans 12 1.6 Financial plan 12 iv Start&run a home staging business 1.7 Forecasts and projections 13 2. Revisiting Your Business Plan 13 3 Market Research 16 1. Researching the Competition 16 1.1 Your competitors as collaborators 17 2. Researching Your Target Markets 17 2.1 Home sellers 18 2.2 Realtors 21 2.3 Home builders 21 4 Legal Business Requirements 23 1. Business Name 23 1.1 Deciding on a tagline or slogan for your business 24 1.2 Business name approval 24 1.3 Business name registration 26 2. Business Number 26 3. Choosing Your Company Structure 27 3.1 Sole proprietorship 27 3.2 Partnership 27 3.3 Incorporation 28 4. Business License 29 5. Business Taxes 29 5.1 Federal sales taxes 29 5.2 State and provincial sales taxes 30 5.3 Income tax 30 5 Insurance 31 1. Home Insurance 31 2. Business Insurance: Commercial Liability 32 3. Cost of Your Inventory Coverage 33 4. Rental Furnishing Company’s Coverage 33 5. Workers’ Compensation 33 6. Critical Injury or Disability 34 7. Vehicle Insurance 34 Contents v 6 Branding Your Business 35 1. Why Your Brand Is Important 35 2. Establishing Your Brand Image 36 3. Your Brand Image Will Change over Time 36 4. Trademarking Your Brand 36 5. Key Marketing Pieces Needed to Secure Your Image 38 7 Marketing and Advertising Your Business 40 1. Marketing Strategies 41 2. Networking 41 2.1 How to network 42 2.2 Tips for positive networking 43 2.3 Benefits of business networking memberships 44 2.4 Social media networking 47 3. Advertising 48 3.1 Article submissions 49 3.2 Media releases 50 3.3 Other creative advertising ideas 50 4. Presentations 51 4.1 Different types of venues for public talks 51 4.2 Types of presentations 52 4.3 Paying workshops 55 5. Trade Shows 56 6. Auctions and Golf Tournaments 57 7. Open Houses 58 7.1 Realtor open houses for home buyers 58 7.2 Realtor open houses for realtors 58 7.3 Other realtors’ open houses 58 8. Retail Locations for Promoting Your Business 58 8.1 Fitness centers or gyms 58 8.2 Home decor stores 59 8.3 Coffee shops and restaurants 59 9. Television 59 vi Start&run a home staging business 8 Marketing Tools 60 1. Promotional Materials — Print 60 1.1 Business cards 60 1.2 Postcards and rack cards 62 1.3 Flyers 62 1.4 Brochures 63 1.5 Greeting cards 63 1.6 Portfolio 63 1.7 Marketing binder 64 1.8 File or presentation folders 64 1.9 Direct-mail campaigns 64 2. Promotional Materials — Electronic 65 2.1 Website 65 2.2 Social networks 67 2.3 Ezines and e-newsletters 67 2.4 E-articles 68 9 Start-up Costs and Monthly Expenses 69 1. Income 69 1.1 Calculating annual income to weekly income 70 1.2 Calculating monthly income from weekly income 70 2. Standard Start-up Costs: Expenses 70 10 Services Offered by Home Stagers 76 1. Consultations 76 1.1 Free consultations 77 1.2 Realtor gift certificate consultations 80 1.3 In-depth home staging consultation 80 1.4 Color consultations 82 2. Recommendations and Reports 82 2.1 Client records recommendations 83 2.2 Your recorded recommendations 83 2.3 Detailed recommendation report 83 2.4 Open house or viewing checklist 84 Contents vii 3. Professional Organizing and Prepack Services 84 3.1 Downsizing recommendations 94 4. Sourcing for Rental Furnishings 95 4.1 Sourcing from rental furnishing companies 95 4.2 Sourcing from your own inventory 98 5. Shopping 101 6. Hands-on Staging or Installation 101 7. MLS and Internet Photos 102 8. Open-House Ready Check-in 102 9. Pack up — Destaging 102 10. Other Related Home Staging Services 103 10.1 Interior decorating or interior design 103 10.2 Project management 103 10.3 Move-ins 103 11 Pricing Guidelines 105 1. Hourly Pricing 106 2. Detailed Recommendation Report Pricing 106 3. Proposal or Bid Pricing 107 3.1 Bid for services only 108 3.2 Services with rentals 108 4. Exclusive Realtor-Arrangement Pricing 108 12 Sales Cycle for Home Staging Services 115 1. Typical Sales Cycle 116 1.1 Prospecting 116 1.2 Qualifying 116 1.3 Consultation 118 1.4 Features and benefits 119 1.5 Testimonials 119 1.6 Handling objections 120 1.7 Information Packages 121 1.8 Closing the sale 126 1.9 Invoicing 126 viii Start&run a home staging business 1.10 Signing the agreement 127 1.11 Receiving final payment 135 2. Follow-up 135 13 Hiring Contractors versus Hiring Employees 136 1. Home Staging Contractors 137 1.1 Pay rates for home staging contractors 137 1.2 Qualifications of home staging contractors 138 2. Home Staging Employees 139 2.1 Pay rates for employees 139 3. Other Considerations When Hiring Contractors or Employees 140 14 Building Strategic Alliances 141 1. Identifying Your Strategic Alliances 141 2. Disclaimer for Strategic Alliances 143 3. Discounts and Referral Fees from Strategic Alliances 143 3.1 Marking up products 143 4. Joint Ventures 143 15 Bookkeeping and Invoicing 145 1. Setting up Your Business Bank Account 145 2. Bookkeeping and Filing 146 2.1 Software packages 146 2.2 Bookkeepers 146 2.3 Accountants 146 2.4 Filing systems 146 3. Forms of Payment 147 3.1 Cash or check payment 147 3.2 Credit card payments 147 3.3 Internet and online banking 148 16 Your Home Office 149 1. Setting Up Your Home Office 149 1.1 Home phone 149 1.2 Cell phone 149 Contents ix 1.3 Toll-free numbers 150 1.4 Computers and software packages 150 1.5 Desk setup 150 2. Professionalism at Home 151 2.1 Dress the part 151 2.2 Set office hours 151 3. Getting Rid of the Home-Office Blues 152 17 The Stage Is Set 153 1. Celebrating Your Successes 153 2. Working with Affirmations 153 3. Get Connected 154 4. Working with Coaches or Mentors 154 Samples 1 Revenue Streams 6 2 Newsletter Sign-up Sheet 52 3 PowerPoint Presentation 53 4 Realtor Presentation 55 5 Calculating Annual Income from Weekly Income 71 6 Calculating Monthly Income from Weekly Income 72 7 Features and Benefits of Home Staging 120 8 Record Keeping 147 Forms 1 Client Consultation 78 2 Client Consent 80 3 Recommendation Report 84 4 Detailed Recommendation Report 85 5 Open House or Viewing Checklist 91 6 Inventory List 97 7 Inventory Cross-Check List 99 8 Proposal Estimate for Services Only 109 9 Proposal Estimate with Rental Inventory 112 x Start&run a home staging business 10 Generic Information Package 123 11 Invoice for Services Only 128 12 Invoice with Rentals 129 13 Rental Inventory Agreement 130 14 All-in-One Rental Services Agreement 132 Exercises 1 Self-assessment for Home Stagers 3 2 Determining Your Vision 9 3 Determining Your Company's Mission Statement 11 4 Business Plan 14 5 Comparison Chart for Existing Home Staging Businesses 18 6 What Is Your Competitive Advantage? 19 7 What Type of Clients Do You Want to Work with? 20 8 Choosing Your Company Name 25 9 Your Brand's Characteristics and Personality Traits 37 10 Creating Your Elevator Speech 44 11 Networking Comparison Chart 46 12 Business Cards: Your Likes and Dislikes 62 13 Websites: Your Likes and Dislikes 67 14 Determining Your Desired Weekly Income 71 15 Determining Your Desired Monthly Income 72 16 Six-Month Worksheet for Income versus Expenses 75 17 Home Staging Services You Will Offer 104

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