become an entrepreneur

I love this email I just got from Sharon Rapp, of Rapizazz a Charlotte, NC home stager

 

When I decided to quit my job working for a Fortune 100 company, I knew this could be the opportunity for me to pursue my life-long dream to have my own business. I always loved decorating homes and had successfully staged several homes to sell. I knew it was something I would love to do but didn’t know where to start…

 

I think Sharon is very common of a lot of people who work in “Corporate America”.  Statistically, most people know they are not doing what they really love…yet are fearful of stepping out on their own as an entrepreneur.  I get that because I was the same way until I got laid-off.  When I got laid-off, I was crushed…you see I thought if I did a good job, I would always have one…but in Corporate America, that’s just not true.  Getting laid-off was the best thing for me because it changed the way I felt about business.  I realized that no matter what, you have to produce.  You can either produce for yourself (be an entrepreneur) and reap the full benefits of your hard work, OR produce for someone else (be an employee).  I say “choose yourself” which is what Sharon did!

 

I found HSR’s training program and was pleasantly surprised to find that the training included the A-to-Z’s of starting up a home staging and redesign business. What a windfall of a find! I especially loved the marketing training to “Bling Your Brand”. Audra is so insightful!

 

It’s not easy to choose yourself and not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur, so you should always do your research and do some serious soul searching.  Finally, this is what Sharon had to say about where she is now…

 

home-staging-charlotte

Thanks Sharon!

Here’s a few more recent testimonials from HSR members who have chosen themselves…

East-Northport-home-stager

jersey shore home staging

charleston-home-staging

model-home-staging

Secrets to Model Home Staging

I’m so excited to announce an advanced training class I’m adding to the HSR Certification program on Successful Model Home Staging.  This class is free to Home Staging Resource members and will cover EVERY aspect of designing and staging a model home.

I created this class because I had so many members get calls from new home builders and I wanted to make sure they were well prepared to handle this business!

If you are a home builder looking for a stager who is well-trained in handling model home staging, click here to go to our directory

Here’s what I go over in my class and what YOU should know about model home staging:

 

  • How to Define the Buyer Demographic and Create Your Home Owner Profile – My 10-step research process that is critical to selling your concept to the builder and setting yourself apart from your competition
  • Five Design Rules for Every Model Home – These are rules of thumb that should never be broken
  • Audra’s Five-Step Formula for Design Success – I’m very clear on how you should pick your finishes, fixtures, furnishings, window treatments, art and accessories for these homes.  What to splurge on and what to save on so you get the most bang for the builder’s buck!
  • Training Your Eye Using My Formula – I show you an easy way to know exactly how to design for your area plus over 50 photo examples
  • Most Important Questions to Ask the Builder – The interview sheet and why the answers will determine your price, services and concept
  • Sharing Your Vision – How to easily create a concept board that communicates your vision and expertise while NOT looking cartoony!
  • How to Price Your Services – What the builder expects, customizing your quote, working within budget, getting what you’re worth and setting expectations!
  • Setting Up Your Critical Vendor List –  Using my design formula, there are critical vendors you will want to source your materials from that I recommend.

Plus…all the forms, price guides, interview sheet, step-by-step process, vendor list (trade discounts), product ideas and more!

 

The live webinar will be this Wednesday, March 11 at 10am (pacific time) and will go at least 2 hours.  I may have to break it up into 2-parts since there’s a lot to go over!  If you are an HSR member, login to the Members Area to attend but don’t worry, I will be recording this session and adding it to the advanced section of the training.

 

By the way, much of the process I outline will be perfect for your design clients as well!

 

Looking forward to seeing you there!

XOXO – Happy Staging!

Audra Slinkey
Amazon-audra

 

 

 

Hope to hear from you!
1-888-563-9271


audra@homestagingresource.com

PS – Does your training provider always give you the latest, critical information as part of your membership?  Click on the image below, to see Why Certification Matters

Why Staging Certification Matters

National Association of Realtors 2015 Home Staging Statistics

2015 Home Staging Statistics Are In!

 

Finally, the National Association of Realtors has surveyed real estate agents on the merits of home staging!  To see the full report, click here or on the image above.  In the survey, they interviewed over 2,300 real estate agents to get their opinion on the benefits of staging, who pays for the staging and how often they recommend staging to their clients.

As a home staging trainer whose sole mission has been to “make home staging an industry standard” for the last 10 years, I’m happy to say that a whopping 34% of the agents surveyed insist on ALL their homes being staged!  Yippee!  Before I get too excited, we stagers have a long way to go in educating the other 66% who don’t think that every listing benefits from staging, so here you go…

I’ve included some fantastic quote images below from the staging report, I want everyone to share on Facebook, Pinterest, your websites, etc…all year long.  They are yours to use freely to get the word out!

 

Home Staging Deeply Affects Buyer’s Perspective

staging-statistic-on-buyer-effect

 

When Buyers Can Visualize the Product As Their Home, An Offer is Made

2015-staging-statistics

 

Even A Flawed Home Has Hope When Staging Happens

staging-stat2

 

Ask the Seller How Much 11-20% More Would Affect Their Bottom Line

staging-statpricing

 

A Very Small Percentage of Agents Think Staging Does Not Affect Price

agent-staging-stat2

Together, we can grow this industry

We are not each others competition

Staging works to sell home’s faster and for more money!

XOXO – Happy Staging!

Audra Slinkey

Hope to hear from you!
1-888-563-9271


audra@homestagingresource.com

 

3ugly

3 Ugly Truths About Home Staging

 

I wrote an article recently in the National Association of Realtors, Styled, Staged and Sold blog that got a lot of interesting and conflicting comments from agents and stagers.  In the article, that you can read here,…I talked about the importance of being of honest with sellers in the 2015 real estate market and to tell the ugly truths about staging and selling.

The comments came fast and furious.  One of the commenters didn’t like the “angle of the before photos” because it wasn’t EXACT, so she did not think she would use a stager…huh?!!  This kind of nonsensical thinking is still out there when it comes to understanding what staging does and does not do for a home.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:

Home staging is not rocket science, it’s pure economics…when you use an expert to improve the look of a product, the demand thus price goes up.

The article was a follow-up on my 3 Ways to Start a Bidding War Through Staging article that has been shared a TON by stagers and agents, so thanks so much!  I’m reminded that I need to educate sellers and agents like never before about home staging!   Together, we can do so much!

 

The 2015 real estate market promises to be an exciting one, so buckle your seat belt folks…

 

start-a-home-staging-career-1

7 Reasons to Start a Home Staging Career in 2015

 

I just got back from Las Vegas and the 2015 RESA Convention and my ears are buzzing with all the excitement and enthusiasm from home stagers across the globe.  I’ve been doing staging training for almost 10 years now and I can truly say there has never been a better time to start a home staging career than now!  Here are my 7 quick reasons why 2015 is the best time to start a home staging career but I’ll have more to report on the RESA Convention in coming blogs:

1. Home Stagers are Busier Than Ever!

Yep, the general consensus from the over 350 professional stagers at the RESA Convention is that they are BUSY.  Their phones are ringing and they are staging and doing redesign like crazy.  This isn’t too surprising because of the next handful of reasons but to say that 2014 was a good year for starting a home staging career, as well as staging statistically is an understatement.

 

2. The “Body of Work” is Better Than Ever!

When you look at the RESA Industry Awards and the amazing work these stagers do every day, you will truly become a believer in the benefits of staging.  Michelle Minch, a Los Angeles Stager and 2006 Home Staging Resource Graduate, was the overall winner in 2015 for her gorgeous vacant work which is sampled below:

 

Michelle Minch of Moving Mountains Design

Michelle Minch of Moving Mountains Design

 

 

When stagers do amazing work, real estate agents, home sellers, home builders and everyone else take notice.  The listing photographs stand out and these homes get the best price!

Michelle Minch of Moving Mountains Design

Michelle Minch of Moving Mountains Design

 

3.  The Redesign Side of the Staging Business is Booming

When I started the Home Staging Resource almost 10 years ago I knew that I needed to add Redesign training as well…great staging turns into move-in redesign.  I was the only staging trainer at the time (and even currently I believe) who incorporates both certification in staging and redesign into the training business model which is essential.   According to a recent Houzz Survey of 6,500 home professionals over 90% expect their business to grow!

 

4.  2014 Statistics on Home Staging are Better Than Ever

Those of you familiar with my blog know that we polled over 350 home stagers and 3500 homes sold worldwide and asked them (and their agents) two critical questions:  Are professionally staged homes selling for  more than not professionally staged homes?  At what percentage increase on average are they selling higher?  While the responses varied, on average the homes that were professionally staged in 2014 sold for 10% more than the homes that were not professionally staged.

 

2014 Home Staging Stats

 

 5.  Home Staging and Redesign Training Has Never Been Better!

The training for staging and redesign has never been better!  In fact, did you know that almost every one of the staging award finalists in the US categories (and some in the Canadian) are part of my Staging Mentors program?  We now have so many wonderful, generous mentors I don’t even list them all on the site.  The Staging Mentors program which is the third package in the HSR Certification training won for most Innovative Product or Service of the Year in 2015 at the RESA Conference! 

Here’s a picture of me hugging my award at the Conference…

best staging training

Not only has my training improved over the years, but I know that others have as well because we keep each other sharp and motivated.  Most of all, we love to see our students succeed!  I love what beautiful Kristi Barnett is doing in her psychological staging and tricky space trainings!  Here’s a photo of us on the red carpet:

 

Kristie Barnett and Audra Slinkey - Staging Trainers

Kristie Barnett and Audra Slinkey – Staging Trainers

 

6.  Stagers are the Best, Most Generous and Fun People in the World

Okay, here’s where I may be a bit biased but I have to say that home stagers as a whole, are a very fun, hard working, innovative, kind group of people with hearts of gold!  There is an enormous amount of respect we give to each other and our clients.  Stagers are fueled by their passion in design and their perfectionist personalities.  Here’s a photo from the RESA Conference of some of the HSR Grads over the last 10 years who I’ve had the honor and privilege to be a part of their training.  As you can see, we are still having fun up on stage chit chatting…

 

Grads of the Home Staging Resource at RESACon

Grads of the Home Staging Resource at RESACon

 

 

Here’s another of some of the gals who missed the photo up on stage:

Look at these gorgeous women!

Look at these gorgeous women!

 

And another fun photo of our yearly HSR networking event where I buy drinks for all my grads prior to the conference.  Even the bartender commented on what a nice, fun and cool group of people we are:

2015-1 002

 

 

 7. HGTV…Need I say More?

I would be a fool if I didn’t acknowledge that the rise and popularity of HGTV and websites like Houzz give people motivation to put beauty into their homes and buyers a “vision” of what they want to see in their next home.  The professional home stager is the person who makes that vision a reality!

So if you’re sitting on the fence and wondering if 2015 is your year to have a home staging career…just do it! I’ve never heard anyone have regrets going into this incredible industry but I do hear people regret not getting into it sooner or getting the right guidance.

 

XOXO – Happy Staging!

Audra Slinkey
Audra-Slinkey

 

Hope to hear from you!
1-888-563-9271

2014-11 Audra-Slinkey-Staging-Mentors-Most-Innovator-Product-or-Service-of-the-Year_edited-1Audra-Slinkeyinnovator

Not all professional stagers are equal! Our HSR Certification training was the first and one of the only staging and redesign training programs that has been third-party, accredited by the Real Estate Staging Association, so invest in the best!

Ready to Become a Successful Home Stager and Redesigner?

 

 

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Latest Raves…

HSR was a wonderful home staging and redesign training program that I am so glad I completed!! The training covers everything you could possibly need to know to start and run a successful home staging and redesign business. It is the most thorough training I could find in my research covering not only home staging and redesign but marketing in great detail which is so important to make a business successful. I would highly recommend Home Staging Resource to anyone who is thinking about starting a home staging/redesign business.

 

Katie Newman of Lake Houston Home Staging and
Redesign

I have been exploring the Home Staging industry classes for sometime now. I decided on the HSR without regrets. The program is both informative and well structured. It also has been a great time-saver for me. HSR has been consistent with regards to communication, in a timely manner.

HSR is highly recommended by me.

Abbie Stokes
ReSell Mavens
Lincroft, NJ

Joining Home Staging Resource was a tough decision - but it turned out to be a brilliant one!  I had gone to the website many times trying to decide and, on a whim, decided to take the plunge.  My business was up and going within a month because of what I learned, not to mention the materials HSR provided. I received a call/lead from the HSR directory the very first week. I put a deposit down on office space, not because the money is rolling in, but because of the confidence and knowledge that HSR gave me.

Thank you!


 

Angela Mager
Provident Home Staging
Fishers, Indiana

My experience with HSR has been awesome!  I can truly say that training with HSR was one of the best choices I have ever made.  Not only have you provided me with the tools, guidance and support needed to become a successful business woman, but you have helped me to start living my dream and passion!  I would highly recommend Home Staging Resource to anyone who has interest in Home Staging.  Keep up the great work HSR and thank you!

Teresa Mills
Looking Fine by Redesign LLC
North Olmsted, Ohio

As with any new business the initial start-up period can be somewhat daunting. However, through HSR training we were given numerous resources including on demand videos, conference calls, and published materials which provided us with an extensive background of what this business entails.

 

Candace Bouley
Kathy Abrams
CHANNING DESIGN

I can't believe how much your home staging course has changed my life! I have worked full time as a hairdresser for 25 years and really needed a change. I have always loved Real Estate and decorating and I have wanted to change careers for a few years now but I had no idea what I would do. After doing some research online I realized I could make a living doing what I'm good at and I'm so glad I chose your program! You really have thought of everything, this training program is amazing! I really loved the recent changes you've made and I just want to thank you for giving me a reason to get up every morning excited about what the day will bring!

 

Luci Terhune N.J
Bungalow Home Staging & Redesign

I can't say enough about the HSR training program.  I like it that you can take as long a you would like to finish the program (within the year.)   I love the business part of it because it's not just about home staging and resigning a room.  It's your business cards, website and lots of forms you provide us with and so much more. Audra helps us with it ALL:).  Signing up with HSR was one of the first things I did and it was well worth it!
 Thank you Audra!



 

Staging and Design by Lisa Marie, LLC
Omaha NE
 

Your training was fabulous. I have sales experience (18 years) but needed the start-up structure to start a home staging business. You go into great detail. The calendar was very helpful for this. Also, all the forms are excellent!!!! I needed some guidelines for the staging and you have also made me very confident to go to a house and go over --the plan, the forms, the feel home formula, and a quick transformation.  The printed materials are so professional and beautiful. I have had people look at the business card--it is so much fun to watch their face. Their eyes get big, say "WOW", and feel the surface. What a great reaction. I can't believe the website. It is gorgeous. Your staff is great. Also, I am impressed with your timing on everything--when you say that you will do something at a certain time, it is done!!  I can't think of one thing at this time that you could do better in the training. The videos, and the live training were very helpful. I would recommend your company to anyone!!

Audra, you should be very proud of yourself to know that you can help so many people with so many subjects. What a great company you have!

 

Diane Lunceford, TX

Thanks so much Audra! The training I received from HSR was so complete that I now feel ready to take on the challenges of my new career!

I had researched other companies and thought I knew the scope of education I was looking for, but with Home Staging Resource I learned valuable things that I couldn't have imagined I needed for my business. I believe if I had chosen a different training program I would have really missed out on the extensive information and company wide support that HSR offers. You have promoted a welcoming, friendly environment of sharing and I couldn't be happier with my decision to join the Home Staging Resource!

 

Kelly Kaufman
Elements Home Staging
Attica, Michigan

I just wanted to say Thank you for offering such a wonderful program. I have learned so much and the live training sessions are so wonderful. I am so excited about my business and this course have given me the tools to get it up and going in an organized manner. Without this program, I honestly don't know if I would have followed my dream. I have read many books and taken other courses and they all left me with so many unanswered questions. Your training has put me on the right path and I honestly cannot thank you enough. I HIGHLY recommend this to anyone who is considering starting their own staging business. It is worth every penny. You are awesome!!!!

Thanks sooooo much!

 

Chrissie Sutherland - Ready Set Stage

"I am SO excited.  I can not tell you how impressed I am with your company!  I have been an entrepreneur for 17 years and have never come across anything like Home Staging Resource.  I will definitely be your BIGGEST fan."

Elayne Forgie, Forgie Home Staging, FL

I must tell you that the business forms in Week 2 are amazing!  I know that to create all of these forms from scratch would have taken me months to prepare.  Your training has enabled me to download all of the forms needed in just one day!  Thank you so much for providing such valuable tools and resources needed to get my new business up and running.  I feel more confident going in to my first client consultation after reading the "Guide to a Successful Consultation".  I feel prepared and well informed about the market, the benefits of home staging and what specific service models I will be selling. This has freed up my time to work on the part I really love, designing the look and feel of my business, creating beautiful home interiors and "shopping"!

Jennifer Opie, PA

After extensive research, I have joined the HSR Family. The personal contact with the leadership staff and business support teams are unbelievable. Business Building is a tough job from the start but HSR takes the Tough right out of the equation.

Kathy Holbrook
Ct Realty Staging
Windsor, CT

Your training program is awesome. As a mother of 4 & 3, we needed a program that would allow us to go at our own pace. We ordered our material right after the holidays and completed the training by the end of January. Our business is building and to date we have staged two homes and two redesigns. Currently we are in the planning process of two redesigns. All of your marketing information has been very instrumental in getting our name out in the DFW area. It is comforting to know that we have Home Staging Resources behind us to guide us through our business. Thanks for continually keeping us up to date on the new home staging trends.

Erika Grizzaffi and Rhonda
Dowling, Denton Texas

When I started the process of choosing a Home Staging Certification program I researched everything! After narrowing it down to two programs, I sent emails to some of the members. Within 24 hours I knew I had made my decision and I have not been disappointed since. Your training provides REAL tools to be successful in this business. The materials are clear and easy to understand, your conference sessions are great and your enthusiasm is catching. I received my marketing materials in the mail last week and they are beautiful. I am so excited to be starting this new venture in my life, THANK YOU.

 

Lisa Ryan
Smart Move Design

After doing some research in Home Staging courses, I found the HSR training program and I cannot be more happy. This training program provided me with all the support, training and communication that I was looking for in a program. It turned out to be one of the most complete and informative online training programs I have come across. It has not only provided me with an in depth knowledge on home staging but has also expedited the start of my business with the pre-made forms, marketing tools and strategies. I am now ready to start my own business (which I didn't believe was possible at first) in just 1 month. I cannot thank you, Audra, enough on this awesome training program with the marketing solutions. I can honestly say, "I got what I paid for" and I am very excited to finally do what I passionately love and enjoy. Thank you again Audra, it was well worth it for me and I'm sure it will be for anyone else who decides to choose HSR as their training program.

Mamta Kamboh
Interiors By Mamta LLC
Frisco, TX

I am so impressed by the HSR training process.  It turned my business around. Literally, a week before signing up for the package, I was ready to let the business go due to the fact that I really felt lost in many areas.  I have in the past month learned and applied the information I got towards my business and it has paid off.  I have been able to have an exact plan for the consultations and appt. with realtors and I have received many e-mails responding to the e-mails that I have sent out.  I have had several comments from Realtors who are now using me as a part of their service that my website and letterhead and cards look very professional.  They were impressed to say the least.  The tips and tricks that you have given are all ways that my business has improved.  Thank you for all of the effort you have put in for me and everyone out there.  I will forever be appreciative of all of your help in making Stage It Today successful!

 

Letitia Granum, MN
Stage It Today
 

Wow! What a phenomenal program HSR has to offer!  All of the learning materials and everything set up step-by-step to follow at your convenience. I truly feel that taking the HSR program has given me the best foundation possible to be a successful business women. With all of the support of HSR, on going partnerships being built and gorgeous marketing materials it now is easy for me to just start putting my name out there and making contacts. With in two weeks of finishing the program I have already staged my first vacant property and will be attending the Realtor luncheon scheduled for next week. Having the opportunity to meet other Realtors and showcase my work couldn't be better and I am so proud to be able to give them my business cards and handouts that are beautiful thanks to HSR.

 

Nicole Utz

This is an Amazing Program! I got my Realtor License years ago and I wish they had had such a comprehensive and informative guide in the start up of being a new business owner! As a stager I knew what I wanted to do I just didn't have the tools or the knowledge to get there. HSR gave me the plan-a detailed list- to get it done so I could focus on doing the job I love... The Action Plans and form information is priceless! It put everything I thought I wanted to say to my customers in a form for me so I didn't have to spend days forming it. It was already done!

 

Heidi Bollum
Tomlinson Real Estate Group
Realtor and Certified Home Stager

WOW! I have just been blown away by all of the support, information, personal training, and abundance of pre-made forms that the HSR training comes with.  It is literally a complete business that is so simple to establish.  Having owned a business before I know first hand how long it took just to create all the forms I needed to get my business up and running and you have really taken that task and removed it so that I could concentrate on the training and marketing (which you have also made simple). I haven't even finished my training yet, and I am already working!  I can't wait to see my website. I would recommend this training to anyone who wants to get into the home staging business- well unless they would be my competition... : )   THANK YOU HSR!

Tracy Laasch
Touch of Design Interiors
Lake Conroe, Texas

When I am looking for a business opportunity I want to go with the best. I did a lot of research on the web about Home Staging and Home Staging Resource had the most comprehensive program.  HSR stood out among what other sites had to offer.  Most sites offered a 1 or 2 day program, if you compare that to HSR's 21 day program there is no contest!  I also liked the professional attitude and desire by HSR to bring professional credibility to the Home Staging profession.

 

Sarah Hart, CA

I was completely impressed by the professionalism and the intensity of the program. You didn't miss a thing. I'm almost ready to submit my information for the web-site and am ready to go and am more confident than if I hadn't take the course! Thanks again for a great program.

Marlene Rusnak
Delaware Home Staging

Your HSR Training is perfect for an artist such as I who has always felt inadequate with the business side of work. I've known that those skills with a creative talent could open jobs that paid better, but I did not even know where to begin to learn or apply them. I have seen this dilemma with a lot of artists over the years.  The HSR program truly speaks to people who think like myself. I have learn so much with your easy, step by step manual and website tools.  My gained knowledge will be life changing! Thanks so much!

Debbie Klahn
Dayton, Ohio

I just wanted to send you an e-mail to let you know how impressed I am with all the work you've put into the HSR. As a previous business owner I know how extremely time consuming and frustrating starting a new business can be. That's an understatement! It is SUCH a relief as I start this new venture to have HSR's support. You truly have done the majority of the leg work. Speaking from previous experience it probably would have taken me twice as long to get this business up and running. The money I've invested is well worth it and I have all the confidence in the world that my business will succeed.  Thanks again!

Donna Coe
Fusion Home Staging
Rancho Cordova, CA

If you are considering a career in staging, taking Audra's certification course is a must! In addition to creating a professional website, this course will make sure you dont miss any important steps needed to market yourself and set your business up correctly. It is a small investment for getting your business up and going and for establishing the confidence you need to have to sell yourself. Thank you Audra!

Kelley Gibbons
Love It and Leave It