If you are a home stager on Facebook, you probably know Lisa McIntee, owner of The Staging Professionals in Niagara Falls, ON. Of course, it’s only recently that we’ve actually been able to put a face to her. An amazing business powerhouse, Lisa has flown under the radar, until recently when her massive growth became a remarkable story. Now, only days away from her start in reality TV, the perfect circular moment in her career, Lisa shares her home stager story with us…
How long have you been a home stager? 7 Years
Why did you decide to become a home stager?
I got the idea from television and thought it was a great way to combine all my skills and my passion to help people. My goal was to find a business where I could meet a variety of people and use my creativity to do something different every day, it was the perfect fit.
What did you do before you were a home stager?
I grew up always having a creative flair; encouraging parents really gave me the foundation I needed to explore any opportunities throughout life that I desired. At the age of 12, I illustrated a childrens’ book, and by 14 had a few of my paintings sold in a local retail store. I have formal training in both business and special fx make up but began my career in retail sales and visual merchandising. I found I had an interest in marketing and advertising and worked in that field for a few years, but was then given an opportunity to enter the world of Forensics. I eventually made a drastic transition from forensics to Home Staging after seeing information about the new opportunity on television. Home Staging is what I will be doing for the rest of my life.
Tell us a little about your business, how it operates and who your clients are:
Most of my clients are Realtors and Homeowners but Investors and Builders are really starting to come around.
What’s your favorite part of the business?
Creating unique, beautiful spaces that sell and building relationships with amazing clients.
What’s your least favorite part of the business?
Who are some of your favorite stagers?
There are so many! I love Ryan Dressel’s ability to make style and elegance look so simple, Michelle Minch can make any possible traditional style look absolutely stunning, Lori Kim Polk has a class that radiates through every staging….the list can go on and on, there’s far too many talented stagers!
Tell us about your best staging experience.
My best staging experience was when I had to stage a home that had every possible condition set on me by the seller. “Don’t move these pieces here, don’t move those ones there”, “Fix my wallpaper, don’t remove it”, “Im not fixing the floors because buyers should look past that” and the list went on and on… To make matters worse, the closing date had to be a certain day which was months away (6 to be exact) and not at all an ideal situation for selling. I told my client the staging had to be perfect to pull everything off and he let me have free reign of the home from that point on. The staging was flawless and the home sold within 30 days for the price they wanted AND they were more impressed that the buyer loved the house so much they actually agreed to the bizarre closing date.
Tell us about your worst staging experience.
Staging a home in the early morning hours and the chandeliers kept swinging and doors closing.
What was your favorite room or art or accessory?
I love my oversized, antiqued artichoke. Every home it goes in sells within 30 days (coincidence?)
If you were to pick a theme song for your career as a home stager, what would it be?
Donna Summer – She Works Hard For Her Money!
If you were going to write a book about your staging career, what would it be called?
No Guts No Glory
What would you tell someone new, thinking of getting into home staging?
It’s a great career choice, but like any other business it’s a long process to profits. Great training and mentors are critical as is knowledge of real estate itself. Be prepared to invest both time and money into your business, and enjoy the ride!
Read more home stager stories in our, “I’m a home stager.” series.
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