A recent Real Estate Staging Association® (RESA®) study shows 174 homeowners had their property on the market on average of 156 days before they decided to stage. Those properties didn’t sell for over 5 months!

When those same homes were staged by a professional they sold in 42 days on average after staging. This study suggests that the homes would have spent 73% less time on the market.

Consider what that might mean to you, how much money you might save by having your home properly staged.

– If your mortgage is $1200.00
– If your utilities, insurance, and other monthly expenses are $450.00
– Your carrying cost per month for those items is $1,650.00

As noted, the study shows home owners had their unstaged property on the market for an average of just over 5 months. Using these numbers as an example, the total carrying cost for the time those homes remained unsold would have been $8,250.00.

Had those homeowners staged first, their time spent awaiting the sale would probably have been cut by about 114 days (just under 4 months) on average. They would have paid slightly more than one month’s carrying cost vs. five months.


Staging their homes at the very beginning of the process would likely have saved them $6,600.00. That’s an 80% savings on the monthly carrying cost.


I want to make it clear that these numbers are simply an example based on one study intended to show the dramatic difference a professional staging of your home to sell more quickly can make when the sale is completed.

Your monthly mortgage will be a different amount and your expenses may even be much greater all things considered, but the comparison is one you should consider.

For your own situation you can use this simple example as a guide to determine how much you will likely save by staging your home before putting it on the market.

Add your mortgage and monthly expenses (utilities, insurance, etc.) to get your total monthly carrying expenses

Multiply the monthly carrying expenses X 5 months (avg. time unstaged) = an estimate of the cost to list your home unstaged

Then multiply the monthly carrying expenses again, but this time by only 3.5 months (average reduced time on market). There you’ll have the suggested savings if you stage your home first!

* NOTE: Staging costs will reduce the total savings somewhat, but they are typically minimal for most homes. We’ll have a better handle on that when I meet with you for an initial consultation.

And one more thing to consider not covered in this simple example. What will the additional costs be in terms of a possible price reduction if your home stays on the market for an extended period of time? Will you be forced to reduce your asking price? If you do, that adds to the carrying cost, perhaps considerably.

This all leads to the inescapable conclusion that you should seriously consider staging your home to sell right from the start. Your realtor and others’ realtors will be more enthusiastic about showing your home to prespective buyers, and those prospective buyers will almost certainly see your home in its best light the first time they walk in the door.

Call me, Sandra Millis, Southern Comfort Redesign & Home Staging, 904-710-1428, today!

I can help you save time and money!!

You are staging your Jacksonvill home in preparation for what you hope will be a quick sale, but you haven’t moved out yet. It’s ok to allow the kitchen to look a little bit lived-in, right?

I suggest it is not. Let me explain.

Kitchens are important to buyers. They want the best one possible, one they can feel at home in right away. You want them to visualize themselves in that room. With that in mind, allowing appliances (toasters, mixers and food processors for example), spice racks, and anything else that may distract buyers to be on your kitchen counters doesn’t work to your advantage. If all your ‘stuff’ is visible, a buyer may not be able to easily envision herself there. Better that you place a few colorful items on the counters to create a sense of warmth and let the buyer create her own image of what your kitchen may look like with her ‘stuff’ there.

Take a look at two photographs of staged kitchens. The first photo here is of a kitchen I staged for a family who had not yet moved out. They agreed that their kitchen should be spotless at all times, and they obviously kept it that way.

When you’re finished cooking, clean the counters and put everything away, every time.

Now let’s look at a vacant home’s kitchen. See any difference other than they are different kitchens? You don’t. Both look uncluttered and spotless.
staging for resale, the kitchen

Nothing but a few colorful items on the counters. The uncluttered space looks bigger, and potential buyers can create their own mental impressions of what it will look like when they move in.

Smart sellers make a continuous effort to keep counters clean and nearly empty. They also make sure cooking smells are diffused as quickly as possible after a meal.

The best advice in general is to be ready for inspection at a moment’s notice. It will be a slight invonvenience if you’re still living there, but the rewards of your diligence will almost certainly be a quicker sale.

In today’s market you need a competitive advantage when selling your house. Home Staging is an investment that will add value to your property and help you sell it more quickly.

Experts agree, home buying is an emotional decision and buyers decide if they are attracted to a house within the first 10 seconds.

As an accredited, licensed, and insured home stager, let me bring out the unique personality of your home. Working with home owners, realtors, builders, and real estate investors alike, I have created that model home look that buyers love and my clients expect.

I will be pleased to do the same for you. I’m Sandra Millis. Call or email me and we’ll get started.


Our home is ours, meaning it reflects our tastes and sense of comfortability. And that’s as it should be nearly all of the time…except perhaps when it’s time to move on, to sell your home. Then it’s better to take a step back and consider what a stranger will think upon entering your home with the idea he or she might want to buy it.

This is where it can be extremely difficult for any of us to be objective. We like what we have in our homes, what pictures are showing, what books are on the shelves, the knick knacks we’ve collected over the years that are here and there. But that may not be what the stanger entering your home for the first time might like. So what to do?

In the simplest terms, you have to de-clutter and make your home look like a model home you’d see at any developer’s site. Now you can’t make your home look ‘new’ but you can make it look less personal, and in doing that you’ll likely arrange your home so as to be appealing to a much larger audience than if it was still filled with your personal stuff.

Remember this. When friends and family members enter your home they expect, and welcome, the signs that you live there. They expect to see photos of themselves and reminders of past events that they probably participated in. But a potential buyer doesn’t have that same feeling. All he or she really wants to see at the outset is how large (or small) the home is and what they…they…might do with it. If there’s too much of your ‘stuff’ around they won’t be able to get as clear a picture of themselves living there.

So, can you do that? If you’re like most of us the answer will be a gentle ‘no’. It isn’t likely you’ll want to move everything from the favored places they occupy in your world. You’ll rationalize about moving this picture, or that momento, or leaving the furniture arranged as it always has been. Rather, you need the help of someone not personally involved with your stuff to make decisions like that. And that’s where I come in. I have the experience and the design sense that may prove helpful to you in this regard.

I can help with the creativity needed to make your home as saleable as it can be to the widest possible audience of potential buyers. Let’s see what we can do, and I’ll do it without a significant dent to your wallet or purse, too.