Staging your Commercial Property to Sell

Home staging is a popular way to improve offers on your property.  Homeowners often rent furniture, bake bread and thoroughly clean to make their house more appealing to potential buyers. Research suggests that on average staged homes sell over 80% faster and for 20% more.

This can also be true for commercial properties.  A common mistake that property sellers make is inadequately preparing their property before they begin selling or leasing it. Unfortunately, failure to prepare can cost the seller hundreds, if not thousands of dollars.

Surprisingly, when it comes to selling or leasing properties, many owners don’t feel the same way. They often prefer to not invest in property maintenance or cosmetic upgrades. Oddly enough, they expect their prospects to envision the condition of the property as it ideally could be (as if this work had already been completed). While some property hunters may have the wherewithal and knowledge to see value, most viewers can’t see beyond the mess. The issue is that sellers will often expect a price for their property that reflects what the property would sell for in this idealized condition.

This is why first impressions are important. When people are buying or leasing commercial real estate, they are making one of the most important financial decisions of their life. Their first impression of a property will often determine whether or not they have interest in a follow-up. When a property looks and shows well, it will receive more attention and offers.

Preparing (staging) commercial properties can be more difficult because in many cases the owners are not local and the preparation can be labor intensive and difficult.  However, here are some aspects to consider that are worth the money:

  • Clean up inside and out (pick up obvious trash and clean surfaces and seek out where “that smell is coming from”).  This can be done by any industrial cleaning company.
  • Remove personal items left by previous tenants or obviously broken furniture or fixtures.  Personal office items, broken chairs, signs and decor should all be removed before the first showing.  Store anything you think might be valuable to the new owners out of sight.
  • Consider investing in quick, affordable updates. Small investments such as paint and portable lighting might attract a buyer or lessee.  

In conclusion, when putting a property on the market, make sure that it shows clean both inside and out and make sure that any environmental and title problems are both discovered and resolved ahead of time. Good luck!