John's Seacoast NH Real Estate Blog


This New Hampshire Stager Prefers Selling The Hard Way!

Being a professional Home Stager in Portsmouth, New Hampshire I'm no stranger to giving advice to sellers.  Now that my house is on the market I can honestly say, I prefer giving the advice to actually living it.

Living in "sell mode" is not for the faint of heart!

 Keeping your house show ready is a lot of work!

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When you list your house for sale, you are transported from the real world to an uncomfortable, inconvenient  fantasy land where soap and towels aren't used and cabinets and closets now carry only a fraction of what you actually own and need to survive.


 Your giant TV and excercise bike are banished from the bedroom and your favorite chair has gained a slipcover and pillow and lost it's ottoman.  It's no fun having to make the beds, pick up laundry, and sweep the floors every day!


As stressful as it may be to live this way....I believe it beats the alternative.


I would rather suffer a bit more pain for the short term than suffer less pain but have it go on for eternity!


Once you decide to sell, your next decision is whether you want to sell the hard way or the easy way.


The hard way is living in show mode...very inconvenient, but much higher odds of selling sooner.

Higher pain - Shorter time period

The easy way is not giving up your conveniences.  "You gotta live" right?  

Less Pain - Longer time period

It's ultimately your decision as the seller.

This Portsmouth, New Hampshire (Stager) Seller prefers the hard way!




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Comment balloon 34 commentsSharon Tara • December 29 2011 08:06AM


Good morning Sharon. What an excellent post! You have made me laugh but you are right on the money. Wishing you a happy, healthy and prosperous new year.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 8 years ago

Sharon- Perfect!!! I suggested this because it is, as usual, perfectly written and illustrated.  BTW... how's it going?  And oh yes, if that photo is just a sample of the rest of the house... move it down to Florida and I'll take it!!!

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) over 8 years ago

Sheila:  I'm glad I made you laugh!  Laughter is the best medicine right?  

Kathy:  Thanks for the suggest!  It's going well, another showing this week!  This photo is not from my house, it's from a client's house.  I'll see how he feels about moving it to Florida and let you know. 

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

The right person hasn't come along yet, but I have a feeling that by the end of this year, you'll have an offer on your house and all of your efforts will prove to be profitable.  Of course it's easier to give the advice, but there was never a doubt in my mind you'd follow your own advice too.

Posted by Roger D. Mucci, Lets shake things up at your home today! (Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092) over 8 years ago


I suggested this post because it's REAL! It's the TRUTH! It's an honest observation and fact of life!

I hope more posts like this get FEATURED and I hope it will be FEATURED because you deserve it.

I see and read featured posts identical to some class or seminar material I sat through and I wonder why is this one featured?

Your post is refreshing and educational. You always have and always did WALK THE TALK! Now you're sharing your experiences by being in the other person's shoes and I know this is going to make you an even more successful home stager because of the lessons you're learning to live until the day you move out!

Your writing is excellent! The truth is best when it hurts so bad. I wouldn't even know where to begin, if I had to move today.


Posted by Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP, Selling Homes Changing Lives (DFW FINE PROPERTIES) over 8 years ago

Sharon, Patricia is so right, and hard to follow:), so suggested and you know we're all rooting for you!!

Posted by Kim Gaston, Colorado Springs REALTOR®, CNE (719)661-6987 (RE/MAX Advantage Realty) over 8 years ago

I too suggested.  Very well said!  Because this is what separates the "truly ready to sell" from the "thinking about selling."  Those that endure these "hardships" want their home sold and sold quickly at a good price.

Posted by Debbie Walsh, Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036 (Shahar Management) over 8 years ago


Your suggestions are right on point.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Posted by Lou Ludwig, Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC (Ludwig & Associates) over 8 years ago

Roger:  Your support means the world to me!  I know the right person will come along and love the house just as much as we have....I'm just not very good at waiting, LOL!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Sharon - It's great to get the perspective of a Stager who is actually living in a staged house for sale.  Great advice to "suck it up" for the short term, and keep the home looking pristine.  It's not easy, but definitely worth it. 

Posted by Sally Weatherley, Vancouver Home Staging, Home Stager Vancouver, B.C (EXIT STAGE RIGHT) over 8 years ago

Patricia:  Wow!  I appreciate your enthusiasm, your support, and your compliment regarding my writing!  It means a lot coming from you, such an amazing master of words!  I never would have expected such a response when I wrote this post...just wanted to make an observation!

Kim:  She is a tough act to follow!  Thanks for stepping up!  I appreciate the suggest and the support!

Debra:  All these "suggests" are so unexpected!  Thank you!  I'm "enduring" and hope to see the light at the end of that tunnel real soon!

Lou:  Thank you!


Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Sally:  If only I had thought to title this post  "Suck it Up For The Short Term"  -  that just sums it up perfectly!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago


I am going to suggest.  This is the truth.  I remember feeling like a stranger in our house in Los Angeles.  The only refuge we had was the garden, which was big enough to be out of sight.  We had a contract in a week...A

Posted by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy (Napa Consultants) over 8 years ago

Sharon, it's great that you "put the money where your mouth is" ;~) I am a firm believer that more inconvenient it is for the family, faster the house will sell. It is a job to keep your house in show ready mode. Very hard job, but it will pay well at the end. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Posted by Anna Dovger, Home Staging -The Woodlands, TX (Add Value Home Staging LLC, 281-704-6607) over 8 years ago

Sharon....You'll be able to TOTALLY relate to all future home staging've walked the walk and lived your talk!!!  BEST of luck with a SALE very soon!!

Posted by Kathy Burke, S.F. East Bay Home Staging (Sensational Home Staging~~Danville, CA) over 8 years ago

I dread the day, I know it's coming, and will be here before I know it, that's why I started about a year ago getting in the mindset to move.  There is sooo much to do, I truly sympathize with clients that move, it can be overwhelming.  My home is decorated, not staged.  It definitely would be difficult to live in a perfectly staged home, but the fruits of your labor will be worth it.  Love your urn and the post! I've also suggested : )

Posted by Cindy Bryant, "Houston Home Staging Pros" (Redesign Etc. Home Staging) over 8 years ago

Alexandra:  I wish I had a garden right now...way too cold out there!  A week on the market is amazing!  Well worth your sacrifice!

Anna:  Thank you so much...I appreciate the crossed fingers!

Kathy:  I'm sure it will make them feel better to know that I practice what I preach.  I can honestly say I feel their pain, lol!

Cindy:  Eventually we all end up going through it...and survive.  Look at it as a great opportunity to clean house and lose some of that stuff you really don't need.  



Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Sharon, I hope you make a series out of your experiences! I don't envy you right now. Good luck with your sale!

Posted by Janice Ankrett, Staging Professional (Janice Ankrett Home Staging) over 8 years ago

Sharon, really, I would never expect you to do things the easy way...  ;-)

Posted by Gerry Michaels, GettysburgGerry Social Meida (Glasswork Media Arts) over 8 years ago

Janice:  I'm hoping for a very short series, ending with the "successful sale" post!  Thanks for the good luck wishes!

Gerry:  Thank you!  I just want to get to the other side as fast as possible!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Hi Sharon ~ hang in there kiddo!  I've lived in a staged home too and you're right -- it's temporarily AWFUL!!  But when you have that SOLD sign out front, all the pain is forgotten!!

Good luck, fingers crossed ... and have a very Happy New Year!!

Posted by Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging, "Staging Consultations that Sell Portland Homes" (Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR) over 8 years ago

Sharon- You are so right. It isn't easy but it will truly help you maximize your equity! Spring market comes early....keep us posted!!!

Posted by Marianne Cherico, Home Stager -Massachusetts and Rhode Island (Interiors by Marianne Cherico) over 8 years ago

Sharon, I love how your photo reflects your words of clean, simple, and streamline. Because of my design aesthetics, I would like to live in a staged house least free from everyone leaving their stuff all around.

Posted by Ellen Caruso (Daniel Gale Sotheby's International Realty) over 8 years ago

Sharon, great blog-totally on target of course-NO PAIN NO GAIN!  My fingers are crossed that you sell quickly and sell well!

Posted by Joanna Cohlan, Designing, Decorating & Staging Westchester Homes (Fresh Eyes For Your Home) over 8 years ago

Hi Sharon--I am so with you on this one.  Lived through 5 weeks of being ready to show at a moments notice for the last house we sold.  But I would rather endure 5 weeks and sell at a high number than 15 months and multiple price reductions.  I have a feeling your house is going to sell very fast--it looks great. 

Posted by Janet Jones, Home Staging, Interior Redesign Kihei, Maui, Hawaii (Just Your Style Interiors, LLC) over 8 years ago

Maureen:  I remember when you sold....I remember I loved the house!  I know this too shall pass, I'm just so darn impatient!  Thanks for the support and all the best in 2012!

Marianne:  I'm hoping the Spring market comes VERY early!  I will keep you updated!  Thank you!

Ellen:  Of course I would love to live in a staged home permanently too....but the effort it requires does get old real fast, LOL!  In general, my home is considered "staged 100% of the time" by my family and friends, but the reality is that I keep it presentable and clean.  "Staged" is another animal altogether!

Joanna:  "Sell quickly and sell well" -  I'll take it!  Thanks so much!

Janet:  Thanks for sharing your experience....I'll take 5 weeks....that would work just fine with me!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Reality in selling really is not fun and you told it here like it is.  Suggested because agents need to share this with their listing clients!!  Happy New Year and here's to a quick sale in 2012!!!

Posted by Ginger Foust, Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging (Certified Staging Professional) over 8 years ago

Ginger:  Thank you!  I'm doing what I can, now it's just a matter of the right buyer coming along!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Happy New Year!

Posted by Not a real person over 8 years ago

Russel:  I wish you the very best for 2012 too!  Thank you for the fireworks!!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Think about how you'll be able to share this experience with future clients, Sharon!  Priceless!

Posted by Julia Maher, Connecticut Home Stager (Nestings: Connecticut Home Staging and Model Homes) over 8 years ago

Julia:  I've already shared with a couple and they seemed to appreciate that I was going through the same thing.  Certainly won't hurt my position!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

Hi Sharon - I really dread when I will have to do this! Right now I am just getting ready but sometime down the road I will be living the hard way!

Posted by Peggy Chirico, REALTOR® 860-748-8900, Hartford & Tolland County Real Estate (Prudential CT Realty) over 8 years ago

Peggy:  It gets old REALLY FAST!  But then again, I'm such a perfectionist, I'm probably making it much worse than most people do. LOL!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) over 8 years ago

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