Professional Home Stagers Host “Happy-Hours” for Real Estate Agents

Home Staging professionals are busy doing exceptional marketing in order to attract Real Estate Agents to home staging open houses and are booking more home staging jobs as a result.

So, what happens at a “Home Staging Happy Hour?” Lets break the entire event down step by step.

At the Home Staging Event:

1) Everyone registers upon entry and drops a business card in the bowl. Have your assistant (or as some of you like to call them, your girlfriend, neighbor or husband) register each person as they enter. Make sure they are given a ticket for any drawings, they register and the assistant can also remind them to ‘check out’ in order to receive their ‘free gift’ when they leave.

2) Wine and Tapas. I simply set these up out of the way and let everyone help themselves. It is not a bad idea to appoint someone to keep an eye on the area so they can replenish as needed if you have the extra pair or hands… or you are married (oh come on, you know we need to keep the busy!). I usually serve wine, beer and tapas. None of it is messy or expensive. A nice cheese, cracker and fruit plate along with some cookies is just fine or you can pick up a few dips and warm tapas at CostCo. Don’t forget the napkins, plates and cups.

3) NO Access. The only areas that you want the real estate agents to see are the ones where you will be giving the live presentation/ power point. In other words, block off the areas that have already been staged and close the doors. The reason for this is you don’t to lose your crowd as they wonder the halls and you don’t want to blow the ‘after’ effect of the staging. For the most part they are going to see the ‘before’ pictures on your presentation but when you are ready for the ‘big reveal’ the agents will get to wonder the house and ‘ooh and ahh’ over your amazing home staging transformation. Plus this keeps them all in one room focused on you!

4) Welcome speech. Once everyone settles down, and don’t be afraid to give them time to socialize and have a drink, then you can give a short welcome or introductory speech. If you held this event in cooperation with an agent, take a moment to thank them. Generally this will be the agent whose listing you are currently in, doing the Happy Hour. Then, ask them a compelling question. I usually do something like “How many of you have too many listings and are making too much money?” Then I say ‘Oh, not too many… good that is where I come in.” I introduce myself and tell them what to expect from this evening which obviously is going to show them how to get more listings and make more money.

5) Begin your Presentation/power point. This usually takes me about 15 minutes and I follow the BAR approach-Before/After/Results. I use a few examples of homes I have done in the past and then I also use the home we are currently in with a slight modification… I show them Before and then I tell the our expected results. They get to see the After, live, when I am done with the presentation.

6) Interactive Live Staging Demo. Take them in an adjoining room that has not been blocked off and do a quick staging demonstration that can transform a room. I usually find this easiest to do in the kitchen as it is big enough to accommodate a group, you can get them to participate by handing you items and placing them in various areas and it is an easy room to quickly stage and add a pocket of emotion. They LOVE this!

7) Open the Doors! Now it is time to let them roam and enjoy the rest of the home. Remember they have already seen the before photos and now they get to see the after. Be prepared to answer questions about what you have done and the pricing.

8) Tell them how they can earn $1000k extra. Before they leave, make sure you announce once again how they can gain added incentives such a monetary bonus by bringing a buyer in the next 30 days, or winning a prize by having the most showings. Whatever you have worked out with the seller and the listing agent.

9) Draw for the iPod from business cards. Now is when you will do a drawing from their business cards or tickets. This is a reward just for coming. I usually do an iPod shuffle or something fun. Normally, I keep this less than $50.

10) Finally, don’t forget to remind them about your staging services. When they leave and get their ‘gift’ they should also receive information about you and your staging services. And, ask them to fill out the “staging experience and commitment forms”

In the next article, I will tell you how to follow up in order to make sure your Real Estate Agent Happy Hour continues to bring you home staging jobs for years to come!