Monday, April 27, 2009

"You had me at hello"--Will Your Home Get the 8.2 Second Look?

Did you know that according to a recent study when a man gazes at a woman for 8.2 seconds or more the first time he sees her, he rates that woman as highly attractive--raising the odds of love at first sight? And on the other end of the spectrum, if the man's gaze lasts for 4.5 seconds or less, it means that the man is not interested in that woman and indicates he did not consider her good-looking enough.

Think a similar theory holds true for prospective buyers checking out your house? Absolutely! Whether it's 10 seconds, 13 seconds or 22 seconds, real estate experts agree you have a very short time to captivate potential buyers and entice them to keep looking. Before the rise of the internet as the primary first search avenue for home buyers, you could focus on your curb appeal to get a prospective buyer in the door. But now that more than 85% of prospective buyers start their home search online, curb appeal is only one part of the complete package you need to sell your house for best price and in the shortest time possible.

The "attractiveness" of your home must be clearly evident in the photos and virtual tour that constitute most buyers' first look at your home if you want to make sure it isn't their last. In a matter of less than 30 seconds, a prospective buyer can view each room of your home and decide whether your home makes the cut or not. If the buyer is looking at your listing, it most likely already meets their basic criteria (location, price, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, etc.). But those characteristics alone will not be enough to ensure your property makes their "must see!" list. Your home will need to make an emotional connection with your prospective buyer, allowing them to see how they can live comfortably and happily in your home.
So what's the most effective way to ensure you're making the most of your home's potential appeal? Investing in professional staging will help you significantly increase the "attractiveness" factor of your property. By helping you highlight your home's best features, maximize the flow through the space, depict each area's function clearly, and evoke a good connection emotionally, a professional stager's assistance will turn your home into a showplace that will captivate your potential buyers both online and in person.

So will your home rate the "8.2 second look"? Make the most of your home's brief opportunity to make that first impression--love at first sight. And that will give you the best chance for a lasting relationship--an accepted offer from a buyer thrilled to be making your house their home. Stage your home to its best potential and your buyer will be thrilled to say, "Oh, yes, you had me at hello!"


Mary Fasnacht of Feels Like Home Interiors helps home sellers in Washington County, PA and the surrounding Pittsburgh area prepare their homes to make the best possible impression in today's challenging market. Please visit her website or call her at (724) 884-7148 to find out more about how she can make a difference for your home or listings .

To read more about this new male/female attractiveness study go to the March 25, 2009 article by Elena Gorgan, Life and Style editor for Softpedia.