Staging a home is crucial for success in any real estate transaction today. It’s the logistics of the operation that might bog down even the most experienced real estate professionals. Balancing the demands of clients - and all the stuff that needs to go into or come out of their home - would be a hassle even with an entire fleet of vehicles at one’s disposal.
After all, today's home buyer isn’t only looking to upgrade for extra space - they want to see how their potential new home will fit into their life. That means staging listings with a plethora of furniture pieces, exercise equipment and more - all of which takes up space and must be moved between locations.
Fortunately, the right vehicle rental service can make for an ideal solution to many of the most pressing transportation and logistics challenges that home staging businesses face.
The Costs of Home Staging
It’s no secret that home staging is a top priority for real estate professionals. Eighty-two percent of buyers’ agents surveyed by the National Association of Realtors in 2021 said they thought staging services made it easier for their clients to “visualize the property as a future home.” Buyers’ and sellers’ agents also seemed to agree that home staging services added up to 5% in additional value to a home’s closing price (and sometimes more), compared to homes that were not staged. No respondent considered professional staging to be a net-negative expense for a home listing.
Clearly, home staging is worth the investment (if you’re a home stager, we probably don’t need to tell you that). The million-dollar question is how much time and money it should consume. Agents who responded to the NAR survey reported spending a median of $1,500 on professional staging services for a single listing. In a Realtor.com article from the same year covered by NAR’s survey, agents cited costs upwards of $2,000 per month for a 2,000 square-foot home.
In today’s housing market, demand for home staging services should work in favor of professional stagers when it’s time to negotiate fees. Still, like any business, home stagers need to keep costs down and productivity high. This might be easy in the company’s early days. As things begin to scale up, though, basic business expenses can grow at an even faster clip. Staying competitive necessitates keeping operations lean, which often requires strategic partnerships to optimize every aspect of the business.
Vehicle Rental for Your Home Staging Service
One great place to start in your mission for strategic growth is a classic dilemma: Is it better to rent or own? If you work in real estate, you’ve fielded this question to countless first-time homebuyers already. In the housing market, the financial advantages of owning rather than renting are pretty clear. For a small business, the opposite is usually true. Capital is in short supply, and assets like vehicles will only continue to eat up cash and depreciate.
A real estate staging business needs a vehicle to operate, but consider all the costs involved in owning a truck or van (AAA is a good source for breaking down the cost of vehicle ownership). Besides the cash required to purchase, you can also count on other recurring expenses like:
- Maintenance and repairs
- License, registration and other fees
- Interest payments (if you use a loan to purchase the vehicle)
- Secure parking and storage
Don’t forget that any vehicle, no matter how well it’s taken care of, will also depreciate in value over time. Suddenly, that truck or van has gone from a crucial investment for your business to a liability.
Renting a vehicle is a great way for your business to avoid many of these costs. Maintenance and depreciation won’t be your concern, and depending on the situation, regular access to parking or storage could be another expense that’s easily avoided. On top of these savings, there’s the simple benefit of convenience. You can rent exactly what you need and pay for it only when you need it.
A More Convenient Vehicle Rental Service for Real Estate Pros
Fluid Truck offers vehicle rental solutions for real estate stagers and agents faced with the challenges of a fast-paced market. Users can reserve the exact vehicle they need, right when they need it (or even months in advance). That means scheduling, waitlists, and time limits are out the window, not to mention the high cost of buying and maintaining any vehicle. With Fluid Truck, home staging for a single listing or multiple properties gets easier and more affordable.
Looking to set the stage for a successful real estate business and meet the demands of a hot housing market? Learn more about how Fluid Truck can solve your transportation and logistics needs.