Expanding the Life of Home Staging Furniture and Decor Accessories
Inventory is expense, it takes time to acquire and is easily damaged. For many professional staging companies, this is their core asset and their primary revenue driver. It's the Home Stagers Dream: charge a service fee for your professional expertise and make great margins by becoming a boutique furniture rental company. Easier said than done, right! Many stagers ask us about how to make the most of their inventory and here are some of the tips from our interior design team at White Orchid Interiors.
Tip #1 - Make Smart Acquisitions
Buy your product from a only handful of manufactures. It takes time to develop furniture vendor relationships. The more you can get to know your suppliers and be a loyal customer the better deals you will receive. You will also have a voice when it comes time to purchase replacement pieces or if you have a warranty concern. Avoid buying furniture pieces that are "in-style" today but are really just a passing fad. At White Orchid Interiors, we go for volume discounts on items that are quite simple (plain white sofas for example). You can easily add variety with abstract artwork or colorful pillows and accessories.
Tip #2 - Take Time to Pack the Truck
Whether you hire internal moving help or third-party moving companies, a little training and instruction goes a long way. Fast does not necessarily equate to efficient. Make sure you have accounted for a sufficient amount of time to prepare for each home staging project. Remember in most cases, the only time your home staging inventory is at-risk is when it's being moved. Don't let your movers try to be a hero -- insist that two people move mid-size to larger furniture items even if one person could potentially do it alone. Most of all, invest in furniture pads or blankets. Money spent to protect your home staging inventory is worth every penny.
Tip #3 - Put Everything in Writing
Make certain your home staging agreement puts responsibility for care of your staging inventory on the homeowner. You cannot be responsible for staging furniture or accessories when they are outside of your sphere of control. Give sellers or real estate agents an estimate of value on your staging product and ask that they insure the items while they remain in the staged home. Furthermore, know your boundaries in advance. Decide ahead of time if you are willing to use your inventory to stage occupied homes or properties with pets. Think through your policies in advance and put them in writing.
Tip #4 - Stay Relevant and Fresh
Develop a system for selling older or outdated staging inventory on a regular basis. Sell used sofas or bedroom sets before they are too far gone or completely out of style. Use these proceeds to supplement your inventory acquisition and buy something fresh on a regular basis. Particularly with home staging, it is important to achieve the look and not necessarily provide a name brand. Find furniture vendors that offer a great value and keep it simple.
These are just a select few of the tips and tricks used by the team at White Orchid Interiors to expand the life of our home staging inventory. Contact us at email@example.com if you have any questions or if we can be a resource for your home staging business.