Setting the Stage

“All the world’s a stage…” – Shakespeare

An empty house can be hard for potential buyers to visualize as a place they will be comfortable and happy to come home to. An empty room can cause confusion and anxiety, the opposite of warm feelings in a future home with loved ones. Master stagers are an invaluable conduit between a property for sale and a buyer looking to make their purchase; providing style and aesthetically pleasing choices, they help a potential buyer fill in the gaps and imagine a place they want to call their home.

Meredith Baer started her home staging/Interior design company Meredith Baer Home in 1998 and counts Bob Dylan, Brad Pitt, and Madonna as clients. She knows the power staging can have, “We want home buyers to open the door and go “wow!'” Meredith shares, “We want them to fall in love, to feel ‘This is it!’ …This is the way I want to live, this feels like home.”

Jill Gold of House Styling and Staging, which touts over $1 Billion of luxury homes staged, certainly agrees. “I love doing the WOW room,” she says of living rooms, “that’s the room the buyer sees and knows they’re going to buy in 8 seconds. An emotional connection is made, and they buy.”

BEFORE – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

AFTER – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

“Home staging is a proven method that sells a home 20% higher and 83% faster compared to homes that are empty,” Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs asserts. “A vacant home could sit on the market for 2 to 3 times longer than a staged one. As a prospective buyer enters your home, it’s important to have them connect with the home on an emotional level.”

“Sometimes rooms are awkward,” Marta says, “and it’s important to show people how a space can be best utilized. An empty house feels a lot smaller without furniture, so proper placement of furniture gives buyers an example of what is possible.”

BEFORE – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

AFTER – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

“Funny enough,” Meredith says, “some of my fondest memories of staging have been taking an older, neglected home and making it look the absolute best!”

Meredith Baer Home

“They (the sellers) are under stress with the situation,” Jill says, “Staging is marketing, we know who the buyer is and we market to them.”

Current trends are natural, neutral colors with pastels making frequent appearances, as well as an overall shift to more eclectic gathering of pieces, blending traditional and antiques with more modern touches. “It’s a mix of a little bit of everything,” Jill offers.

BEFORE – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

AFTER – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

Marta refers to it as ‘the transitional style.’ “The sellers/owners like to have input with, say, a piece of art they like. We want to balance a room out more than if you just go one route. The mix of contemporary with traditional offers a broader appeal. It’s a safe combination as we must target all clients with different tastes. Having a cohesive look that runs throughout an entire home can make it look bigger as well.”

BEFORE – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

AFTER – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

“For years there has been a trend towards a modern look in home staging, but many are now finding the look too predictable and cold.” Meredith asserts, “recently we have more and more requests for an eclectic or transitional decor style, more of a mix. Although squared sofas and armchairs are still popular, a rounded profile is also in demand these days.”

Jill’s company specializes in Luxury Home Staging but stages all types of homes: condos, town homes, and Seasonal Luxury Guest properties too. “Staging is a booming business in South Florida and the Palm Beaches. Floridians and tourists expect high style when visiting or buying a home.”

BEFORE – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

AFTER – Jill Gold House Styling and Staging

Marta has seen an uptick in houses selling along with all her furniture and design choices. “I had two units in the Water Club sell as is with all the staging pieces included. As the Founder and Principal Designer of Palm Beach Staging and Designs I work for myself, but I also work in a partnership with my clients, to turn interior spaces into beautiful homes. I’ve been so fortunate to collaborate with such courteous homeowners and can honestly say I’m working in my dream job.”

BEFORE – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

AFTER – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

“It’s almost an unfair advantage to have a house staged,” comments Jill, “Puts people in such a good mood they’re ready to write a check.”

BEFORE – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

AFTER – Marta Camargo of Palm Beach Staging & Designs

Meredith has one tip that always serves her well, “We love getting as much input as possible from our clients prior to our installation. That way we can discuss all the client’s preferences and either plan accordingly or discuss our recommendations, which may differ with the client preferences,” she says. But if the seller is living at the property? “We suggest taking down all or most of their family photos and personal mementos…buyers want to picture THEMSELVES living there, not you.”

Meredith Baer Home
House Styling and Staging
Palm Beach Staging & Designs

Visit Luxury Home Magazine of The Palm Beaches to find more articles on design and style trends.

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