The President meets... Barb Schwarz

The President meets… Barb Schwarz

In the 1st episode of the Column, IAHSP® EU President Sanja Radovanovic meets Barb Schwarz, the Creator of the Staging concept and the Home Staging Industry.
This year marks an important milestone as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Home Staging.
IAHSP® EU Board and its members express their gratitude to Barb for the endless efforts in informing, educating the broad audience of Real Estate Professionals and property owners in the world.

Sanja Radovanovic:
Barb, I’m beyond excited to officially open the newest IAHSP® EU column with you! 2022 is a big milestone for our industry. It is going to be a year full of celebration! Can you believe it marks the 50th Anniversary since you’ve invented Home Staging?

Barb Schwarz:
I Love what I do! I Love and have Loved every minute of Inventing Home Staging and Working to Create and Build the Home Staging Industry. And to do so for the Past 50 years to this very day. Many who are involved in Home Staging Now do not know my Steps, Path, or My Journey in Creating and Building Home Staging from Scratch from the very Beginning. There was just me. I was by myself and obviously that didn’t stop me at all. Not Once, Not Ever! I truly let nothing get in my way! 50 years seems to me like a short time in so many ways. My Main Goal, as you Sanja have heard me say many times, has been and is today to Stage the World! And that is exactly what is Happening. I always viewed that as a fact as I have felt and that said from the very Beginning. Now, the Majority of Others consider it a fact too. There are some that heard me say what my Goal was however the far majority of the people in the beginning did Not listen to me at all. They either Didn’t believe me or they thought I was just kidding myself. But frankly I didn’t pay ANY attention to the Na-sayers at all! If I had listened we would not have a Home Staging Industry at all today. I have known I am on a Mission from the Beginning and my Intuition told me to stay Focused on what I was doing! To stay Focused like a laser beam and that is how I felt and I still feel to this very day! I Totally saw and knew that the Staging I started and was doing was Working! Success started and happened every day right in front of My Eyes!
You see I had an Inner feeling that something was coming to me in a very meaningful way of what I was to do. I sincerely share with you that I found out that was true the very Day the Words Home Staging came out of my mouth for the very first time. I knew that day that something special happened. I said that to several friends that evening at a small Birthday Dinner Party. I actually said it was like a gift given to me that very day. I told them I knew in an instant what to do and what to say to the Seller. Why? Because the right words, the right actions came to my mind, and to my heart too, and It worked. I have always said for Years that it was a Gift from God. I believe and I know that to this very day. When that moment came I knew it was meant to be. Again, Why? Well, I had been searching for what to do and what to say to sellers. In fact I had said to myself a few weeks before that day to either get out of the the RE Business or I had to figure out a way and Figure out what to do to help sellers prepare their homes for sale. I was not happy with how things were going with My sellers before I invented Home Staging so I constantly kept concentrating on what to do every moment, everyday, all the time! I had even told a couple of sellers that I could Decorate their home for selling and they each laughed out loud and forcefully replied NO! They continued with why would we do that? They said we are Moving so we are not going to decorate anything. So I knew I had to really come up with something that would change how I sold RE or I would have to just get out of the Business. And I had never ever quit anything. I still haven’t. When I do something, I am like some of you in the fact that I will not let anything get in the way. Nothing, not even health. I have changed roles when my health needed it, but I have never stopped Staging or Speaking, Caring, or Giving, Leading or Loving what I do or Loving others! And I know many of
you know exactly what I am talking about. Everyone of You whom I have met in person I have felt Your Dear Love every single time that we are together! I feel it even when we Zoom together!
I studied Music, Design and Education for my Degrees in College. I Preformed in Musicals and Operettas in high school and college, taught school right after graduation, then opened my own Design business, and all of those experiences I started to realise during my future years had really played Important parts in my Inventing Home Staging and Creating and Building the Home Staging Industry. One of those Important Experiences Happened For Sure one day when I stopped by a Branch Office of a Real Estate Company named John L Scott Real Estate in Bellevue, WA. I was in the area because of an appointment with a client in My Design Business and had about 45 extra minutes before that appointment to spare so I stopped at the Real Estate office on behalf of a community charity. At least that was the only reason I thought I had for Stopping at that office. I Soon found out another reason that I had not consciously thought about or planned on. So I went in and asked did their Broker have a moment to share with Me so I could ask for a Charitable Contribution to the Children’s Hospital Charity Fund as they had so kindly donated to the year before. I had been told that by the Funds’ Committee Chairwoman a couple of days before on the phone in case I had time to stop by since I knew I was going to be in that area. So, yes, The Broker/Manager there listened kindly to me for a few minutes but then BLURTED out the words: ‘Why aren’t You in Real Estate?’
I couldn’t even answer him before he then shouted: ‘In Fact I DARE YOU to get your license and to get into RE Right Away! And He WAS SERIOUS! He acted like he had known me for years and he was not asking would I be interested or anything like that, no it was more like a DEMAND! Long story short, after I left there I went to see the Client which turned out to be a very short appointment as they wanted to reschedule and went home where I lived at that time in Bellevue, WA. I walked around in my Home Office, sat down at my white desk that I loved, got out the phone book and as if there was no choice at all I picked up my phone and called a Real Estate School! I enrolled in their license course, then took the test and passed. And, I never looked back. I really know that the Dare he made to me was a Major Tipping Point and Part of my inventing Home Staging. Remember I Invented Home Staging in the Real Estate Industry and not in the Design or Decorating Industry. And that my Friends is a very important thing. Important for many many reasons which sometime I will go into more detail on for You. On Tip I give you is that we do not have tall he restrictions put upon us as if I had Invented Home Staging in the Design Industry I promise you! I could write a chapter on that topic from my experiences and knowledge standpoint. As I look back at what took place that day in that John L Scott Office it as meant to be. And Little did I know at the time that when I took his Dare that it would change my life Forever. And, I have a very strong feeling that it changed YOUR life forever too at just the right time for you.
When I started listing and selling properties in Real Estate my Listings were over priced and NO ONE ever told any seller what to do to prepare their home for sale. I made income from Selling Homes to Buyers but when it came to my listings they just sat there, didn’t sell and that Really Really Bothered Me. History shows that there was NO concept of how to prepare any Home for sale in the Real Estate Industry anywhere. In fact Nothing existed in ANY industry to address the need that I saw as Homes came on the market. To me it was SO OBVIOUS but it certainly was not to others. The topic was simply ignored everywhere in the RE Industry! So houses were listed just the way they looked at the time they were listed for sale.
But a Change was coming! And I do feel Blessed that the Purpose in My Life was that the Change Happened and Came To/Through me. From the Day I said Home Staging to a seller it became my Purpose, my Mission, and my Work to Stage every Home I listed so it would Sell and Sell for Top dollar! And also to share and spread the Home Staging Concept with others in my Market and then around the World. I did not know how long that would take. That did not concern me frankly. It didn’t Because I was ready and open to the Journey in front of me whatever it was, how ever long it took and where it would take me. I have trusted from the very beginning that all is working for good. Even when we think it may not be good in our lives, later we all look back and say that it was the best thing that could have ever happened to us and just how much we learned from it all for a better life forward. I truthfully and totally was open to what was to come in front of me. So I took it step by Step from the Ground up and I will continue to do so as there is so much more to learn, live, and grow from all along the way.
Yes 50 Years may seem long to some people. but to me it is not. It was and still is my path and purpose. Think about something for me. Think about the following question I have for you in a sentence or 3 from this point. Think about it whether you have been Staging for 15 years or more or you are just beginning. I know you have people who ask you what is Home Staging? Yes, they do, don’t they! Well, how would you feel if you were the only one on earth, the only one in the world who knew what a one new word meant, what 2 new words meant? And you were the only person on earth who knew what it/they meant? What if it were YOU who needed to teach The World what 1 or 2 new words meant? Think about it please. Think about what if you had been in my shoes. Good question don’t you think!
You didn’t know it till right now as you read my words but I decided in put 15 years into research with all my Sellers who Staged with me. I asked them all my questions and I wanted their personal answers! For 15 years I ask them to give me feedback on what I said to them, how I said it, when I said it and absolutely every single thing I they knew before and did before I met them, when I met them, during my presentation, as I worked with them, during My Staging the House time and after I completed their Staging. I asked about their experiences while it was on the market, then when it sold and when they moved to their next home. I wanted to know every emotion, every concern, everything they experienced, and what they thought worked and what they thought didn’t work too. I wanted to know how they felt about my words, what i said, how I said it and on and on. You see I am a Teacher. I have been teaching all my life. It is a crucial part of who I am as a physical person and as a Spiritual Being in a human body. And I never gave a talk, never taught anyone else all those years what I had learned until I had fine tuned it so very very much that I knew it worked in every way for every type of seller personality with every kind of house. I Built a Model for Staging. I Built a Foundation for Home Staging and it was and is my Basis for what I wanted the Staging Industry to be. I humbly share that with you as I wanted and want it to work for you too!
You see 50 years is not a long time to me to accomplish what I was suppose to do. And I know in my Core, My Heart and in My Gut that it is MY purpose for being Here. It had to be and continues to be my Mission! Now, of course, I know it can be a challenge sometimes to educate someone who doesn’t know what Staging is nor what it means. But, should you ever feel challenged please just think of me. Please think when Barb can Teach the 2 words of Home Staging and then spread those words and concept around the world, then think and realise YOU can do it too where ever you live and Stage! And You can do so without it taking you 50 years to teach your market, your city, your state and your country. I Believe in You and I know that You can! Step by step, step by step, step by step.
So 50 years for Me and still Counting as I still have a whole lot of work to do because You see to Me in Some Ways It is Just The Beginning.

You are the Inventor of The Staged Homes Concept and Home Staging Industry, Creator of The Accredited Staging Professional® Courses, Creator of The ASP® and ASPM® Designations, Best Selling Author, Award-Winning Professional Speaker, Real Estate Broker, Founder and The Original 20 Year Builder of IAHSP® INTERNATIONAL, World Wide Staging Service Week, WWSSW, World Wide Staging Day, WWSD, and the list goes on… how much effort and passion does it take to accomplish so much?

You hit the Nail on the Head Sanja! I Personally know it takes a ton of Work and Deep- Down felt Passion to Create what one desires. I do not believe in making excuses or procrastinating. Those are Self Sabotaging Characteristics and they are not good to have or do or get into the habit of doing. It is really true that the one we procrastinate to the most is ourselves! I work from a Place of Commitment and and Accountability! What good are Commitments when we do not hold ourselves Accountable? When I Teach I love sharing the concepts and Steps I have developed in that area too. I have always worked as a Multi-Purposed person. yea, A Multi-tasked person but most important to me is what the Purpose is. I strive to see an over view of what I want to accomplish. It is just the way I am made. It really comes down to loving what you do and doing what you love and keeping Your Purpose at the Forefront of everything. I also Believe it is important to live in a state of Gratefulness. And to live in a State of Gratefulness no matter what is going on in my life. I am Always Grateful for my Energy, My Intuition, which I call My Inner Knower or Inner Intelligence, My Creativity, My Determination, My Focus on what needs to be done and My Passion.
I saw a list, yes I will even call it a list in my mind that I saw of what I wanted to do. A list of What I wanted to Build. First I trained live over one million Three Hundred Thousand RE Agents on what the Concept of Home Staging Was. I Produced my own Seminars all over North America as well as Seminar promoters brought me to cities for My RE Seminars entitled How to List and Sell Residential RE Successfully. I taught RE Agents from 1985 to 1998 by traveling to a city a day, 5 days a week, for up to 40 weeks a year on the Road in the USA and in Canada. I flew over a million miles spreading the Word Staging everywhere I went. I did so morning, noon and night. I didn’t teach Real Estate Agents how to Stage, I taught this as one of the main ways I spread the meaning of Home Staging across the Country and North America. My Inner knower told me that is what I needed to do. So I taught RE Agents just how to introduce my concept of Staging to the Sellers and Buyers that they worked with so that the Sellers knew more of how to prepare their homes for sale. AND, I knew in my Heart and from My Inner Knower that I would next Build and Teach Staging Courses, the First in the World. I knew of course that the RE Agents would not want to do the Staging as their role is to Market and Sell The House. Yes, some might want to Stage but they would have to also become a Trained Professional Home Stager to do that.
So, next I created the Staging Courses and the First Staging Designations and began to build the first real Websites to support them which became some of the latest websites on any topic in the world as huge websites. With all of my Speaking and Traveling I used to print and carry all of the forms and materials I wanted to give to my Attendees for them to use in their businesses but I knew I needed to put them all on line. I decided to call that site: The Staging University! I knew that it was crucial to found and Build a Home Staging Association and I gave it the Name of The International Association of Home Staging Professionals. IAHSP.

Some mocked the name as how dare I say International but I knew as I already shared with you above that my Mission was to Stage The World. And it had to be International! I knew that it was crucial that I have an Association to support the Stagers I was Training. Along with that I believe in giving back to Our Communities where we live and work. They support you and me and we need to give back to them in kind. So I named that World Wide Staging Service Week, WWSSW. I started it out with one day but then after 9-11 took place in NYC I knew I needed to make it a week of Service at the very least. WWSSW will always be very close to my Heart. Many lives have been changed through WWSSW! And now I have Created as The Inventor of Home Staging and The Home Staging Industry a
Worldwide Staging Day ™ of Celebration. WWSD(tm) is for Each Stager to Celebrate Being a Home Stager. Celebrate their Creativity, their Talent, and Their Businesses! Also I Believe Staging Associations all over the World should Celebrate their Stagers Members and Our Staging Industry too as they would not be an Association without them. And Home Staging Associations I believe I know a lot about Personally!

How difficult was it back then to inform and educate the sellers and Real Estate Agents on the multiple benefits Home Staging was providing?

Thank you for asking. My answer is easy for me as to me I Never thought of it as difficult at all. The word Difficult actually never came to my mind. I saw it as an opportunity. I Truly Do and Teach what I Believe which is You Get what You Expect! Traditionally that is the Truth. Change your Expectations and You change Your life! It is what I know and strive to do. It is one of my Principles and part of my Philosophy. Another one of my Principles, which is a way of life for me, is to look for what I want and not for what I don’t want. So, I looked for those Sellers that needed me. For Me I see it as Attitude.
Anytime in the past as well as this very moment when someone says to me ‘What is Staging and/or what are the Benefits’ I always think and say to myself: ‘YEAH! I Get to be the ONE to Educate them!’ I love it when they ask or say that. And I bet I have heard those words more than anyone else on earth. After 50 Years, smile me, I know that I am! In fact I thank them for asking me! And Educate them I do. I humbly share with you that They will always remember it was ME, and I do not talk with them as The Inventor of Home Staging at all. That could scare them. I will make sure that they remember it was me by the way I share my Enthusiasm, Sincerity, Excitement, Examples, the Questions I ask them and My Passion! I let them know that I am Here to help them, their Friends and their Relatives now and in the Future! I was and always have been determined, full of energy, passionate, and Committed to My Mission. Each one is important to me. I ask for a simple commitment from them that literally anyone can say yes to. You decide what commitment matters most to you to ask them to say yes to.
Of course Stagers hear what are called Objections. They come from sellers and RE Agents primarily. I do not like the word Objections at all. My graduates, students and Friends too call the way and how I talk Barb Talk. I use and say words that are substitutes for common words that Billions of people have a habit of saying. My Barb Vocabulary changed my Business for the Better and also my life. It really helped my Dear Daughters Dr.s’ too after Her suffering a Traumatic Brain injury as a passenger in an automobile accident that Totally changed her life. I decided to use the words I taught myself to use and also share with her Dr.s’ to use and substitute for words they said that had no hope in them. I did that to help them help her in a more positive way. Words are SO VERY VERY IMPORTANT.
I do not say nor use the word Objection(s). Instead I figured out that People have Concerns, they have concerns of course. You have them too and so do I. So the word Concern works so much better for everyone than saying or thinking that they Object to this or Object to that. Stop that, change how you think and what you say. I promise you it works. People all over the world have the very same concerns! They totally are all concerned about the same things no matter where they live! Hearing concerns should never stop you. People make concerns known when they are interested in what you are talking about! Think about that! If they didn’t have an interest they wouldn’t have a concern at all and just ask you to leave. Concerns are buying signs my Friends! That is what they are! And once again you have a super opportunity to educate them, put their mind at ease and get on with Staging! I hope to teach you my Barb Talk one day in the future, which could be in person or zoom land, either works. I got a text from one of my Master Graduates from Years Past who wrote me the other day that no one knows Barb Talk like Barb. Well, that is me and I admit I do have a way of looking at words, listening to words and Observing what words work best. It really pays off in wonderful ways and the best way is in better Relationships for sure.

What advice would you give to Staging professionals who are just starting their business?

I Wrote what I call BARBS’ ‘S’ FORMULA! S is For Stagers Staging Success(TM). I have never stopped working ever. My Creative mind is too Important for Me to stop.
I Brainstorm, Listen to My Inner Knower, Think, Re-frame and I do that with Everything in My Mind as I always have. Then I Create, Write, Build, and Develop New Ideas, New Concepts and New Educational Materials. So, below what I wrote is for All Stagers. For Everyone no matter how long they have been in the Business. Sometimes I see an Experienced Stager who may have Forgotten what Brought them Success in the First Place. So Below, I share some of what can help Any of Us get back on Track Again. That is because It is True and Timeless!

  1. Positive Attitude
    Attitude is the most important thing. You can do anything when you have the right attitude! Do not become a Professional Home Stager without a Positive Attitude. Because should you give it a go without a positive attitude it will not work! You may attempt to fool yourself but you will not fool others as they can read a negative attitude a mile away! You simply cannot hide it, it sneaks out and I have seen that many times with a number of people all over the world. When the Real person shows you who they are, believe them! Believe them when it is great! But also Believe them when its not great, that is until they really change for the better and hopefully they do. Therefore should and when you need to Fix Your Attitude then do that first! Do that before you strive to be a Happy Stager! Take a Time Out when You need it and make an on purpose Attitude Adjustment. It is More than worth it for sure. An out of order Attitude will Cost You Stress, Time, Energy and Money!
    NO Matter What, this comes First!
  2. Communication
    Your Communication will determine but not be limited to how much business you receive, how hard or easy it is to work with people and whether issues come up or not. Communication to me is everything. It is composed of many things but these come to mind as very important I feel: Words, Body Language, Care, Skill, Sincerity, Honesty, Heart, Intuition plus more every time you communicate. One of my very favourite Topics to Teach is Communication. I feel I have become a Behaviourist after Seeing, Hearing, Observing, Teaching and Working with over 1,400,000 people in my Courses, Seminars,Trainings and in My Life! And then there are Thousands and Thousands of Houses I have Staged and I always Communicate have and always will Communicate with each owner myself as that is why I am there.
  3. Self Awareness
    Be aware of what You are Thinking
    Be Aware of How you Feel.
    Be Aware if You are Being Aware! That is Very IMPORTANT in Staging. Be Aware about everything around you. In the house, out of the house, in each cupboard, in the garage, in the shed if there is one and everywhere. The neighbours, RE Agents, cars going by, windows, doors, decks, patios, elevators, everything! I don’t limit it ever. But most important is to be Aware of YOU.
    For as YOU Self Observe YOURSELF YOU will learn a whole lot when you are open to doing so.
  4. It Is all about Educating People
    The words Marketing or Selling are not dirty words. You may or may not feel that they are. The thing is that no one can sell anything to anyone when the buyer really doesn’t want to buy it! Even if the seller gives a listing to someone they didn’t really want to give it to, they will cancel it the next day for sure. But you know what?
    To me I do not, and have not, ever sold sell anything to anyone. What I do is to simply Educate someone on what they want to know about.
    What I do and have done is to simply Educate my clients! All my life I have worked to Educate people about what they want to know. It is just that simple, just that easy. The better you become at Educating Clients and RE Agents the more business and Staging you will have!
    So, Think about Educating People, not about selling anyone anything!
    Words matter, even as we think out loud in our brains! Re-frame the word Selling to Educating.
  5. Staging
    Never stop learning! Observe Your Work, Learn more. Critique your own work, Learn more. Look at tons of photos all the time of your Staging and take it apart mentally and put it back together in another way. Stay out of the box. The box is fear, I have taught that for years and it is real. Look at other Stagers Staging. Don’t copy, BE an original! See what worked and what you think didn’t and learn from it. I look at you as an Artist so do not be a cookie cutter Stager. Never do what I call Cookie Cutter Staging. That means to take what you used to Stage one house and move it to another house and put it exactly in those rooms like you had it in the last house you moved it from. And yes some Stagers do that. They will say it makes them more money. Really? Agents do not like it at all. RE Agents say why am I or the seller paying for that? It looks just like a cookie cutter stamped out Staging all exactly alike, which is where I got those words. Where is Your Creativity if You do your Staging Like that. That is just plain sad. The almighty dollar isn’t worth it when you leave your Creativity at the door. Oh My Gosh should You sell out on Your Creativity you could lose everything. I said before in this interview to leave your Ego outside the door, but never your Creativity. Stage from Your Heart, Stage from Your Creativity, Stage from Your Love of Staging and for Creating the Most Wonderful Environment in and for that House that you have ever done before. And Do that very single time you Stage!

    S.R. According to your knowledge and experience what are the 5 most important qualities a Professional Home Stager should have?

    To Me it Starts and Ends with These Crucial and Critical 7 Qualities. In Some Ways You or I may even be able to Tell Whether a Person will be Successful as a Professional Home Stager based upon how they these 5 Key things. That is how important I know that these are:

    1. Integrity! How do Your Treat People? What are your Work Ethics? Is Your Word really Your Word? Those things matter plus other things too. And It all makes up Your reputation and how people feel in regards to whether they feel you have Integrity or You have a lack there of?

    2. Honesty! Be honest or You will end up stabbing yourself in the back. Honesty is important in every business, not just Staging.

    3. Communication! Communication brings clients to you or it Pushes them away. Make sure your Communication is professional, thoughtful, Up to date as to what is happening around you and your client. And Make sure Your Communication is Stellar!

    4. Humility! Leave your ego at the door. Your Ego serves you, but usually it doesn’t serve the client at all.

    5. Service! Serving others means putting them first and serving them from a Place of Care, Heart, Knowledge, Sincere interest, Patience, and Yes Love.
    Do not even attempt to serve people like a # or go there just for the money. If you want to do that, well then get into another line of work. For to really Have a Successful Career that You really love it comes from Serving People like you would like to be Served and Treated Always!

    6. Change! Life is Change. Change happens all of the time. Some people thrive on Change, others are terrified of it. But remember Real Estate markets change, Neighbourhoods change, Your Market base can change, the Economy changes, Your Business will Change, and on and on ! So, Be open to Change! Be Open when Changes come and look for and expect opportunities to come to you because of the changes! I am serious! Be open to Change even when they may be beyond your control. For times that seem harder, well when you are open to Change, Changes can actually bring Blessings to you too!
    I know I have discovered that Changes can open up doors that You Never Even Noticed were there all along.

    7. Gifts! Guess What? Every single person reading my words has Great Gifts as Abilities to be Grateful for! Everyone does. Be Grateful for Yours Every day of Your Life.
    Someone may say to themselves when they read this is that they do not have any Gifts, or that Theirs are not as good as Others gifts. What? Of course you have Gifts. YES YOU DO! Stop comparing yourself to others. Compare only You to You about whether You are doing Your best or not. That is WHO You Need to Compare Yourself too. All of us, all of us have gifts I call them. You have gifts in the great thoughts you think, your positive ways you have as You look at life, Your Abilities, Your Talents, What you are good at, What you love to do plus more and more about You to be Grateful for. Also,You have the connection with the Creative Universe inside you or you wouldn’t even be here! Yes You do! You have the Connection when You seek it and want to know it. Whether you believe in God, or the Universe or what ever You like to Name it, I strongly suggest that listen Inside Yourself to Your energy, Your spirit, Your Creativity and the Gifts you have and be over overwhelmingly Grateful and Thankful for them. Be Grateful for YOU! For YOUR LIFE and the Gifts You have that make You – You. Remember, there will never be another You! You are one of a Kind! Unique, Gorgeous, Beautiful, Talented, Creative, Loving, and Beyond Compare! It is The Truth and It Always will Be!

    When you founded IAHSP® INTERNATIONAL back in 1999, you knew that it was a matter of time before Home Staging spread globally. Speaking about the Associations and the importance of their role in lobbying for our industry, how proud are you of IAHSP® Europe for leading the way and for setting important marks in Europe?

    As The Inventor of Home Staging and The Staging Industry, Founder and the Original 20 Year Builder of IAHSP International itself I am so Grateful for IAHSP EUROPE! IAHSP EUROPE is Creating Projects and Events that in my Mind make them a Real Leader Among Other Staging Associations around the World. I feel this way because of The Contributions You are making in The Communities where Your Members work and live in Many Countries in Europe. Just one example are the Amazing Projects You Select, Your Care in Planning in Detail, You Personalise Your Services to the Environment of the Organization that Your Serve, and You Stage for Your Crucial Important Part in World Wide Staging Service Week, WWSSW each year in European Countries. As the Founder and also original Builder of IAHSP and WWSSW I am Forever Grateful for Your Amazing and Constant Participation in This Life Changing Event each year.
    IAHSP EUROPE is Truly MAKING MIRACLES Happen in the Lives of those in Need.
    When I think of IAHSP Europe I think of Talent, Creativity, Planning, Service, Care, Dedication,Vision and Love. I can hardly wait to see what you do next! Please know that what you have accomplished so far is Fabulous and Beyond! Congratulations! I also know that it is a Spring Board For What I know YOU Can and Will Do For IAHSP EUROPE in the Future. I See Your Dedication in Bringing The Very Best Future to Home Staging In Europe and, of Course, to Your Amazing IAHSP Europe Members!
    Lead On, for You are needed in oh so many ways! The only limit you have as an Association is how you limit your Associations Imagination. That I know for Sure. It is true for us all as Professional Stagers and IAHSP EUROPE Members for sure! Lead on! Be Brave! Nothing will keep you back unless You let it. For as The Founder and original Builder of IAHSP International for 20 Years there is Nothing You cannot do.
    I am so very Grateful for Each of You and All of YOU! I Believe In You and The reason I feel that way is because You hold the Love and Talent Inside You All to Create it! And that is a Fact! I am, and always will be, Your NUMBER ONE FAN, Supporter and Enthusiast!

    January 9th 2022.
    You have established the Worldwide Staging DayTM and I see it as one of your multiple gifts to us all. How many different initiatives have happening around the world with and through WWSD Ambassadors?

    WORLDWIDE STAGING DAY I BELIEVE IS REALLY IMPORTANT. I have been asked through the years, a couple of times each year, why do we not have a Day a Year where Stagers Can Celebrate Being a Home Stager? And, In 2022 I decided it was time to do just that. We all know what the last 2 years have been like for People all around the world! And that includes of Course Home Stagers and Our Home Staging Industry. So In my Heart I felt that Now was the time to Create and Declare a Day of Celebration for Professional Home Stagers and The Home Staging Industry I was Honoured and Blessed to Invented and Built.
    I am so Happy to see the Stager Response of Celebration from all Around The World. Individual Professional Home Stagers, Stager Associations, In many Countries Professional Home Stagers and Staging Associations are Celebrating Home Staging by putting on Fabulous, Educational, Exciting Events. From a World view it is Fabulous to see Home Stagers in Russia, Hungary, Portugal, Poland, Germany, Spain, Italy, South Africa, Brazil, The United States, The UK, Canada, and many more Countries’ Home Stagers are participating because of Their Love of Staging. Many have told me it is the Day they have been waiting for.
    I am Extremely Grateful and Proud of IAHSP®EUROPE for Believing In, Supporting and Participating in our First World Wide Staging Day on January 9th, 2022, this year! IAHSP EUROPE was the Very First Home Staging Association to Step up,Sign Up, and Show Their care and Their Understanding of just how important it is to Support and Celebrate Our Staging Industry now Every Year!
    It is also a Perfect Time and a True Landmark to Celebrate the 50th Year Anniversary of when I Invented Home Staging and The Staging Industry.
    Thank you IAHSP Europe and All of Your Members for Realising the Importance of and the Opportunity to Educate the Public Even More on This Very Important Date Each Year of January 9th, on World Wide Staging Day All Around The World!

    We all know that you are a true visionary. Please tell me, how do you imagine the Staging Industry and the Real Estate Market 50 years from now?

    I have a new Trademark, STAGING FORWARD(TM)
    Staging is Here to stay! Our Staging Industry will Continue to Grow and Grow to A size that Will even be beyond Expectations. It is a fact of Nature, a law of the Universe and it is because all around the World Home Sellers and The Public is Understanding More and More Just how Crucial Home Staging is!
    Home Staging, which I not only Invented but lived in it, lived with it, watched it, grew it and built it and it is a Tipping Point in Real Estate as I believer that you will agree with too. The Topping point as to the Importance of what Sellers Receive in their pocket in Selling their Home! It is The number ONE Most Important Marketing tool any Seller can Do and Use to Sell their Home sell for the Most Money Possible. Statistics show that in any area in every market and in every country. Should you not have statistics in Your Area, Town, City or Country then NOW is the time to start to keep Statistics. It is never to late to do that. Never to late! You as a Professional Home Stager should be and need to keep Your Statistics about your Own Business always as well. Should you not be doing that nor keeping Stats up to date then you have no one to hold responsible but Yourself! You must know the phrase, if it’s up to be, it is UP to Me! My Grandfather taught me that. That has impacted my Life for Years and Years! It is true and I am forever Grateful for his Care, His sweetness and His knowledge always!
    I have no doubt at all about the Great Future of Home Staging in the Years ahead. It is a great time to be a Professional Home Stager! Our HS Industry is getting Stronger and Stronger all the time all over the Globe! Remember, even a Pandemic could not stop the need for Staging Homes. Homes that were Staged were the ones to that Sell and Sold because they are/were STAGED! The Buying Public is more aware and sophisticated. Buyers in the know – know what Staging is and they know how much easier it is to actually see the Real space in the house when it is Staged for sale. A Staged Scene in each room far outsells too much furniture, to many collections, personal items all over the house, sticky floors, dirty windows, torn draperies, and this list goes on in any and very house every single day!
    And as far as Vacant Houses are concerned a Staged Vacant Home far outsells empty, cold, dark, depressed looking empty houses everyday too!
    So, whether it is a cluttered over personalised lived in House or a vacant Cold feeling empty house the House does not feel as much Love as Houses that are Staged with The Scenes Set for the Buyers to really be able to mentally move in and buy it to become their Home! And that is the Actual, real life Truth!
    So, when I think Staging Forward(tm) I see and know these things are coming for You Too:
    When one Property is Staged in a Building, a Neighbourhood, a Village, a Town, City or in the Country whether it is a House, a Condominium, an Apartment, whatever and where ever it is Word Spreads. And you should be the one spreading the word the most by the way! When that happens then another house will also want to be Staged too! I know this as a fact as I made it become a Fact! When you Stage that is just the beginning of your work as there are so many more benefits that come to you when you spread the word that you Staged a Property!
    RE Agents will Have to Keep Awakening to What Sellers Really Want! They will be forced to! For no serious Seller wants to be on the Market for 2 years and each wants more money which Staging Their Home Can Bring. The more Sellers You educate Sellers about Staging the more they will expect the Agents to keep up with the times for sure! I also made that happen in my market. It works!
    More RE Companies will want their Agents to Bring in Home Stagers for Sellers or Hire them. Some will want You to become their RE Office Stager! So, Check out your options always!
    RE Companies will start paying Home Stagers to Stage Each Company listing for the Seller and Agent. That works! Its already being done and You can Make it happen for you too.
    Staging Forward(TM), Remember that where you are now and where you will be in Your Staging Business in 2 or 3 years from now is going to be Amazing! SO Amazing that it might even shock you. That is as long as you are Committed, Determined, Not afraid to do the work to get You there and to KEEP BELIEVING IN YOU AND IN HOME STAGING!
    HOME STAGING is here to stay Forever! Personally, I am SO VERY PROUD of the Progress YOU have made in EUROPE!
    I share a True Analogy with you in this article as I close for this time: I grew up on A Farm in my Younger years in the state of Kansas. Always on the Farm You plant the crops, You water the crops, You fertilise the crops, take care of the crops as they grow and Then You Harvest them. But You never leave them! And, You don’t just check in on them in 4 months. No, it is a day to day role you fill. And that is the same for You and Me in Home Staging! You Need to Take Care of Your Clients, Refresh Your Staged Homes, Check in on all that is going on, stay up to date on the latest and all that is going on in Your Market! Get out of Your House and Educate Your city, town and Market as to WHO YOU are! What YOU do and Why YOU do it! And WHY it works! Should You not do that, then no one else is going to do it for you!
    Believe in You, Believe in Staging! Make the Life You Want! Build the Career You Want! AND, BE THE CHANGES YOU WANT TO SEE!
    Because when YOU do, and I do know that from personal experience, the Sellers, The Public, RE Agents, and More will come to You in Your market to Stage For Home Staging! And, they will come to You Over and Over Again!
    How Exciting is that! So, Never Ever Stop Celebrating With Every Step You Take!
    As I have always Said and Taught since Day One I also love Sharing with You Here: “I LOVE THIS BUSINESS!” And I know you do too!

    (Barb Schwarz’s answers are copy written)