Archive for the ‘Press Releases’ Category

Showhomes Wins CNBC Million-Dollar Home Competition

May 21st, 2013

Bellaire home wins in CNBC Competition “Best Bang For Your Buck”

CNBC Challenge 2013

Showhomes Home Staging had its home staging services recognized nationally by CNBC’s Million Dollar Home Contest.

Showhomes Home Staging, a national home staging franchise, staged the million dollar property that was selected by CNBC’s real estate expert, Dolly Lenz, as the “best bang for your buck” in the country, priced at $1 million on May 3, 2013.

The winning home on Cedar Street in Houston’s Bellaire neighborhood is listed by realtor Lisa Kornhauser who works for the firm of John Daugherty Post Oak Realtors, who asked Showhomes to help him stage the million-dollar property. The English manor is 4,413 square feet and features four bedrooms, 3 1/2 bathrooms, a fire pit, outdoor kitchen and exceptional kitchen appliances.

Showhomes Home Staging specializes in helping realtors and homeowners sell homes by staging properties in such a way that prospective buyers can already imagine themselves living in the home.

“The key is to add little details,” says Matt Kelton, chief operating officer of Showhomes Home Staging, “Today’s Wall Street Journal by the coffee maker, slippers by the bed and fresh flowers on the dining room table make all the difference.”

CNBC’s Million Dollar Home Contest revealed a single multi-million dollar home in six different markets across the U.S.: Charlotte, N.C.; Chicago; Houston; New Haven, Conn.; and San Diego, Calif. The show aims to explore value in different markets and real estate trends in different regions of the country.

 

Thriving in Franchising After Leaving Corporate America

April 2nd, 2013

Showhomes Franchise Profile: Fred and Lorraine Pierson of Raleigh, NC

Fred Pierson’s path to entrepreneurship was anything but linear. Before becoming a Showhomes Home Staging franchise owner in Raleigh, N.C., Fred Pierson had two different corporate careers.

In college, Pierson earned a degree in aviation management and went on to manage corporate jet facilities across the United States. Due to the nature of his work, he and his wife, Lorraine, moved frequently. After years of packing and unpacking, Fred, Lorraine and their young children settled in North Carolina and Fred left the aviation industry and his first corporate career.

Fred then joined Starwood Hotels and Resorts. He felt that “hospitality was similar in nature” to his aviation work. For the next decade, Pierson worked his way up the corporate ladder, eventually earning the title of General Manager. As the economy contracted during the Great Recession, Fred returned to work for a competitor at half the compensation of what he had been making.

“After doing corporate work for 25 years, my wife and I felt it was time to start working for ourselves,” says Pierson. “In life, opportunities present themselves occasionally, but what really made Showhomes the right opportunity for us was the timing,” he explains.

As luck would have it, a good friend of Fred’s was starting her own mortgage brokerage firm around the same time as his departure from the hospitality industry. Due to her encouragement, Fred became a national and state licensed mortgage loan officer — passing both tests on his first try.

“Old dogs can learn new tricks!” he says.

Working as a mortgage officer was very interesting to Pierson, though he soon realized it could put a strain on his relationships with friends.

“I refused to sacrifice my relationships with people to originate loans,” Pierson explains, “As such, my wife and I looked at opportunities that would provide me with a pipeline of loans without pushing me to use my personal contacts.”

A good friend led the Pierson’s to Showhomes, a business model they felt they would use as an “ancillary feeder” to his mortgage business that catered to those relocating to the Raleigh area.

“We quickly saw that the opportunities with Showhomes were far greater than within the mortgage business,” says Fred. “In a short period of time we saw impressive results that allowed us to walk away from the mortgage side of things and focus on Showhomes.”

The Pierson’s ultimately chose Showhomes over other franchise opportunities because it played to the couples’ talents. Lorraine enjoyed interior design and, as a byproduct of Fred’s aviation management days, was adept at staging houses and making them feel like homes. Fred, a self-described “turnaround specialist for companies,” easily brought in new business.

“Technically no one does what we do on a national level with the level of support and national branding that Showhomes offers,” Pierson says.

On what to expect when becoming a Showhomes franchisee Fred says, “You’re buying the right to a territory and what you do with that territory and how you manage it effectively is up to you.

As franchisees, Fred and Lorraine have learned a considerable amount about real estate and the effect staging has on the buying and selling process. The number one challenge to Showhomes as a business model, according to Fred, is demonstrating the value of a staged home to both the seller and to the realtor.  “Showhomes is here to stage, maintain, manage and protect your home. My job is to make someone fall in love with your home; it’s the Realtor’s job to find a buyer”.

With experiencing close to a 70-percent success rate of having homes sell within 90 days of being staged, the Pierson’s feel that the human elements—leaving slippers by the bed, The Wall Street Journal near the coffee maker– clearly make a difference and bring a human touch.

“To be successful it helps to be well-rounded and most people, because of their corporate careers, are specialists in a particular area, like sales, operations, or administrative. For this reason, it works best with a great team, similar to myself and my wife Lorraine.”

“I take great satisfaction in explaining Showhomes to business principals,” says Fred, “Smart people right away say, ‘That’s an amazing business model!’”

Showhomes Awarded the Franchise Business Review Top 50

March 8th, 2013


Franchise Business Review surveyed more than 26,000 franchisees representing over 350 franchise brands based on their level of satisfaction, experience, market area, business lifestyle, and other demographic characteristics. The list of the 2013 “FBR50” received the highest ratings by their franchise owners.

Nashville, TN, March 08, 2013- Showhomes, America’s largest home staging provider, announced today that it has been awarded into the 2013 Top Franchise Systems for the fifth year in a row.

Franchise Business Review surveyed more than 26,000 franchisees representing over 350 franchise brands based on their level of satisfaction, experience, market area, business lifestyle, and other demographic characteristics. The list of the 2013 “FBR50” received the highest ratings by their franchise owners.

“The satisfaction and success of our franchise owner is our core focus at Showhomes” announced Matt Kelton, Chief Operating Officer.  “We are honored to have received this industry respected award for five years in a row.  Communication with the Showhomes franchise community is essential and Franchise Business Review is able to help us measure our work with the franchise owners and areas where we need to improve each year.”

To compile the honorees for this year’s list, Franchise Business Review surveyed more franchise brands than ever before.  “These franchisors truly understand the importance of surveying their operators.  If franchisees aren’t happy, they won’t validate your system, and you won’t sell franchises-it’s really that simple” said Franchise Business Review president Michelle Rowan.

Franchise Business Review annually recognizes franchisors with the highest overall franchise satisfaction based on its survey of franchisees.  The survey includes 33 benchmark questions, relating to the franchisee’s experience and satisfaction as well as market area, business lifestyle, and other demographic characteristics.

About Showhomes

Since 1986, Showhomes has helped realtors and homeowners sell more than 26,000 homes worth more than $8 billion across the United States. Showhomes provides a turnkey package in home staging that includes whole-house furnishings, professional decorating, a live-in home manager and marketing support services.  For more information please go to www.showhomes.com or contact us at 1-888-481-6742

Showhomes Moves to Next Level with CNN Money Live!

February 13th, 2013

Nashville, TN (Feb 14, 2013) –) — In a major partnership at the forefront of evolving media trends, MFV Expositions has announced a partnership with Money Magazine, CNNmoney.com and Benchmark Entertainment to produce custom videos for Showhomes that will extend their franchise presence and messaging beyond the trade show floor.

Developing custom videos at the show to reach quality franchisee prospects, ERN LIVE video, FranchiseExpo.com, and Money Magazine offer video segments hosted by award-winning radio and TV host, Alan Taylor, which feature interviews, testimonials and other promotional material of the Showhomes franchise.

Filmed, produced, and edited to feature a given franchise’s concept, branding, and messaging, the three-to-five minute interview-style video will be widely distributed and heavily promoted through this new partnership. The Money Live! From the Shows videos will be featured on a custom landing page on FranchiseExpo.com, with banner ads and promotion links on CNNmoney.com, which will drive traffic to the fully-functional Showhomes lead capture page.

“We’re thrilled to partner with MFV Expositions to help build momentum for Showhomes by providing an extra push to get our desired franchise opportunity messages out to prospects,” said Matt Kelton, Chief Operating Office of Showhomes.   “It gives Showhomes the chance to integrate video into our development strategies and let people have a high level overview of what makes our company special in a short 3 minute time frame.”

To see the Showhomes video on CNN Money please go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7qcTqCqJw8

Showhomes Top Franchisees Recognized

February 6th, 2013

TOP FRANCHISES RECOGNIZED FOR EXCELLENCE

Franchise of the Year, Circle of Excellence, President’s Club and More

Vacant homes are hard to sell!  They lack buyer appeal, languish on the market and receive low offers.  Showhomes, a national home staging franchise, and their franchise partners have provided successful selling solutions for real estate professionals and homeowners in all economic market cycles for the past 26 years.

At the recent Showhomes Annual Conference, held at the beautiful Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville TN, Showhomes, America’s Largest Home Staging Franchise celebrated the achievements of their top franchisees.

  • Showhomes Jacksonville – Franchise of the Year, President’s Club, Circle of Excellence & Most Homes Sold.
  • Showhomes Raleigh - Rising Star Franchise of the Year, Circle of Excellence & Most Move Ins.
  • Showhomes Memphis – President’s Club, Circle of Excellence, Shooting Star & Most Homes Sold
  • Showhomes Fox Valley – Ambassador Award, President’s Club, Circle of Excellence & Most Homes Sold.
  • Showhomes South Bay – Best in Staging Design, Most Homes Sold, & Fastest Fill Time.
  • Showhomes Houston – Rising Star Best in Staging Design & President’s Club.
  • Showhomes Coral Gables – President’s Club & Circle of Excellence.
  • Showhomes Tulsa – President’s Club, Most Move Ins & Fastest Fill Times
  • Showhomes Kansas City – President’s Club, Most Move Ins & Most Homes Sold

Other award recipients were:  Denver, East Valley, Little Rock, Mobile, N. Pinellas/Pasco Co., Naperville, Nashville, North Shore-Barrington, San Diego & SE Wisconsin.

Bert Lyles, Showhomes CEO said, “We are very proud of our Showhomes family and all award winners.  Each business is built on integrity with a customer centric focus and outstanding staging design & services.  Each award is well deserved.

# # #

Since 1986, Showhomes has helped realtors and homeowners sell more than 26,000 homes worth more than $8 billion across the United States. Showhomes provides a turnkey package in home staging that includes whole-house furnishings, professional decorating, staging, a live-in home manager and marketing support services.

Top 5 Reasons to Buy a Showhomes Franchise

February 5th, 2013

Showhomes is now in its 27th year of business and we are looking forward to a record 2013.  As you look at your personal goals for the year, you should consider where you want to be in your career.  Striving for new goals is a motivating way to give you a new beginning.  For many people, these goals may include the desire to start their own business, spend less time commuting, increase financial gains and make their own decisions. Franchising fits very well into that picture.

Here are 5 reasons to choose a Showhomes franchise opportunity if you want to own your own business.

1.     Proven Track Record. Any good franchise company has developed a method of doing business that works well and produces successful results. All franchises have an already-established system in place that you must follow. These systems are designed to improve overall productivity and increase revenue of each franchise. Having a proven system in place eliminates the guesswork and errors a common business owner would normally face.   Showhomes has helped 25,000 home owners, realtors, banks, and investors sell properties worth over $8 billion and we are the leading nationwide home staging source.  The only way we could have done this is with the most talented franchise owners in the country.  They have helped us create the Showhomes system and we have decades of results to prove that it works!

2.     Strong Brand Name. One of the biggest advantages of franchising is that the company is building a brand on a regional and national basis that will have value in the eyes of customers you would like to attract. Showhomes has been featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show, HGTV, Fox News, The New York Times, and more media lists than we have time to mention here.  When you begin your Showhomes business this type of media coverage along with our known name in the real estate industry is a huge help in building credibility.  We are the only nationwide home staging franchise and this fact is a big advantage for our owners.

3.     Training and Support. A high-quality franchise company has training programs in place designed to educate someone who has no background in the industry as well as no experience in running their own business.  They should also have reference materials to assist you in dealing with whatever comes up while you’re running your business.  Showhomes has all of that and more. We have developed a comprehensive training program at our home office where we will teach you everything that you need to know to run and manage your business including marketing techniques as well as instruction on how to use our proprietary business management software.  We have an online training center known as Showhomes University that provides cutting edge coursework for you and your staff.  Showhomes has over 1,000 pages of documentation in our online manual system known as Showpedia.  This information is updated monthly with new updates so you are always up to date on the latest information.  We have weekly training webinars, regional meeting, field visits, and more to help you get ramped up quickly.

The success of a franchise depends on the success of the franchisees. Therefore, the majority of our time at Showhomes is dedicated to supporting our owners. You are not alone when you are building and running your business and you can always call on experienced people when you hit a rough spot or want to share new ideas for growing the business. Within the franchise model, owners find a support network already in place. The best franchise businesses will provide franchisees with extensive coaching and systems support. While being an entrepreneur can be a lonely position, the support of a franchise system ensures you’re never left out on your own.

Peer learning can be one of the most valuable benefits to joining a franchise system. When you join, you buy into a network of businesspeople that have all gone through the exact same process, are working with the exact same systems and are facing the exact same challenges and opportunities. Yes, every market is different, but the amount of shared knowledge franchisees have access to is significant.

4.     Lifestyle flexibility is a huge advantage at Showhomes.  You will work from home or even in your very own Showhome!  There are no big retail leases, no need for a large number of staff members, and no huge inventories.  With Showhomes you can spend more time with your family and not miss out on the moments you have missed by having to work in corporate America.

5. Exit Strategy. When the time comes that you would like to retire or sell your business for any reason, most franchises leave it up to you to do so.  However, with Showhomes, our experienced staff will assist you in finding qualified buyers who are serious about purchasing your business, thus relieving you of the expense and hassle of doing it yourself.

As you look at this list, it not only shows a number of reasons to think about purchasing a franchise, it also shows you some of the major challenges you’ll face if you have to create all these things yourself in an independent business. However, you do have to pay fees in a franchise. These fees vary depending on the franchise, so make sure to research what you are getting for your money. You can pay the franchisor the fees, or you can pay for many expensive mistakes by not learning the lessons of others that have gone before you; that decision is up to you. Using a franchise to meet your goal of starting a new business is a wonderful approach for most people, for all these reasons and many more.  For more information in starting your very own Showhomes franchise please go to www.showhomesfranchise.com or call us at 1-888-481-6742

Showhomes Franchise Development Update

January 7th, 2013

Showhomes Home Staging Gets Serious About Finding New Franchisees

Home improvement franchise turns to lead generators, trade show as recruitment options

CHARLESTON, S.C. (JAN 4, 2013) — The largest national home staging franchise, Showhomes Home Staging, has partnered with the fastest-growing network of lead generation companies in the U.S. to recruit new franchisees for the home improvement franchise.

Franchise Clique, Franchise Buy and Veterans Franchise, the three lead generation companies chosen by Showhomes Home Staging, will put together a lead generation, advertising and search engine optimization campaign designed to entice qualified entrepreneurs with an eye for interior design ready to become Showhome Home Staging franchisees.

Showhomes, the nation’s largest home staging franchise, has experienced aggressive sales growth over the past seven years. The franchise transforms vacant houses into fully-furnished homes, inviting prospective home buyers to imagine a new life in a stylish new house. Showhomes Home Staging has been a resource to homeowners and realtors for the past 3 decades. .

“Staging makes a profound difference when selling a home,” says David Schwartz, who serves as the chairman and chief executive officer of Franchise Clique, Franchise Buy and Veterans Franchise.

“As a home improvement franchise, Showhomes is a value-added service,” says Matt Kelton, COO of Showhomes. “Franchisees create a major win-win scenario for both home owners and Realtors looking to sell homes faster and for more money.   In addition, our franchise partners — always know they can count on the franchisors to support them in any situation,” he adds.

In addition to its partnership with Franchise Clique, Franchise Buy and Veterans Franchise, Showhomes will be at the Franchise Expo South, a trade show that features hundreds of top franchises looking to recruit new franchisees. The Franchise Expo South will take place January 11-13 in Miami Beach, Fla. at the Miami Beach Convention Center.  Showhomes will be in booth # 709

About Franchise Clique

Franchise Clique, one of the nation’s fastest growing Internet-based marketing companies, specializes in lead generation services and solutions for franchises and business opportunities. Founded in Charleston, S.C. in 2009, Franchise Clique has used its uniquely designed innovative technology in conjunction with its team’s combined 20 years of experience to become one of the industry’s highest-ranking lead generators. Franchise Clique enjoys a top rating from the Better Business Bureau and an association with the International Franchise Association. For more information, go to http://www.franchiseclique.com, find us on Facebook at (www.facebook.com/franchiseclique), follow us on Twitter @FranchiseClique or call 877-252-2340.

Charleston area home staging firm puts people in houses for sale

April 16th, 2012

There are plenty of companies that will dress up a home for sale with decorative touches and temporary furnishings, but one local business goes a step further.

Lorelie and Coy Brown’s Showhomes Charleston also puts people in the vacant homes; people who move in until the house sells, keep things tidy, mow the lawn and pay the utility bills.

Showhomes is a national franchise built around the idea that occupied homes sell faster and for higher prices while reducing homeowners’ carrying costs and deterring vandalism. It’s a twist on the practice known as home staging.

Home staging involves making residential properties more attractive to potential buyers, typically by decorating vacant homes with furniture, art and other touches.

“You have to have everything from the hand towels in the bathroom to a full master bedroom,” said Coy Brown, standing in Showhomes’ small warehouse of furniture, lamps, rugs and accessories.

Living arrangement

Home managers are screened by the Browns, and on average may live in a home for five or six months. When the home is sold, Showhomes could move the managers to another home.

The home managers may be people relocating to the area who aren’t ready to buy, the Browns said, or people who need a temporary home while they are building one of their own. The homes are typically higher-end properties.

“Normally, it’s people who are in transition,” Coy Brown said.

The Browns of Isle of Palms decided to become franchisees in 2010 after Lorelie Brown’s mother learned about Showhomes while looking for a home in Florida.

“He still has the email I sent saying: We ought to look into this,” Lorelie Brown said, referring to her husband.

At the time, she was busy home-schooling the Browns’ three children and he was working in residential construction.

They did their research and decided to take the plunge and now have the Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester market for Showhomes.

The home-staging aspect of the business allows Lorelie Brown to tap her training in design. She used to design day-care centers.

‘Learning curve’
The Browns have been running the business for 16 months now, primarily serving clients in Charleston County.

“There’s a big learning curve in teaching Realtors and homeowners about what we do,” Coy Brown said.

He said one home they staged previously had been on the market for more than 18 months and then sold in 29 days. While such results aren’t typical, Showhomes says occupied, staged homes sell faster and for higher prices than other listings.

“When we stage a home, we hold an open house for agents, with a full lunch,” he said.

That way, listing agents get a fresh look at the newly occupied and decorated house.

In February, the Showhomes Home Staging organization recognized the Browns’ franchise with a “circle of excellence” award for customer service and a “best in staging design rising star” award for home staging, in competition with other franchises open less than 18 months.

Banks Turn to Showhomes Home Staging Franchise to Help Sell Chicago Foreclosures

March 30th, 2012

Foreclosed homes may be an opportunity for buyers and investors, but for banks, they are a mess with no end in sight. Foreclosures cost money to maintain, create insurance problems, invite vandalism and devalue neighboring homes.  Home  staging company, Showhomes of Naperville, has been providing banks in the Chicago area with a tidy solution to foreclosures and vacant properties. Showhomes places a live-in home stager, called a Home Manager, who occupies the home and keeps it in show condition until it sells.

“Once a home is foreclosed, banks want it off the books as soon as possible, but too often just the opposite happens,” said Matt Kelton, Showhomes COO. “So many distressed properties, especially the high-end houses, sit empty and deteriorate quickly. They don’t stand out and they attract low-ball offers that lower property values.”

Showhomes of Naperville is working with bankers and asset managers to help them preserve foreclosed listings, minimize costs, reduce insurance exposure and sell homes for higher prices. The service is attractive because Showhomes picks up utility bills, handles minor maintenance and takes care of cleaning. Best of all, banks don’t pay don’t pay monthly staging fees, making it an inexpensive staging option for banks handling foreclosed homes.

“We got our start 25 years ago helping banks stage foreclosed homes and today, our service is just as valuable,” said Kelton. “Nationally, banks can save millions by using Showhomes. It’s a no-brainer for any sized bank.”

Although the number of Chicago foreclosures is gradually decreasing, it continues to pose an issue in the housing market.  According to numbers released by the Illinois Foreclosure Listing Service, in December of 2011, the new foreclosure filings in Cook County increased by 14.32% while in the rest of Chicago land the number of new filings have dropped on average by 11%. In DuPage County, new foreclosure filings also saw increase of 9.86%.  In Chicago, the number of properties sold at foreclosure auctions in December have increased by 13.14%, a total of 3,048, compared to November of 2011 and by 81.00% compared to December 2010.

SHOWHOMES ANNOUNCES 10 YEAR GROWTH PLAN TO TRIPLE U.S. LOCATIONS

March 26th, 2012

Nashville, Tennessee – Showhomes Home Staging plans to triple its United States franchise locations in the next 10 years, the company announced Friday.

The nationally franchised company has become America’s largest home staging provider since it opened its doors in 1986, and it currently has a network of more than 70 franchise locations across the country.  Despite the tough real estate market, the company continues to add new, thriving locations by focusing on quality customer service and excellence in staging design.

“Showhomes has a unique business model that has shown consistent growth over the past 25 years,” says Matt Kelton, Chief Operating Officer of Showhomes.  “We have great momentum as a company, and demand for our services has been greater than ever.  We have franchise owners who have joined Showhomes over the last 3 years from a number of industries who have thrived, from real estate, to hospitality, to health care, to banking and more.”

Support for franchisees is something the Corporate team does not take lightly, as evidenced by the recent ranking as one of the Top 50 Franchise Companies by the prestigious Franchise Business Review, a national franchise market research firm that surveys thousands of franchise owners each year and evaluates the comprehensive findings to reveal overall franchisee satisfaction.   This is the fourth year in a row Showhomes has made the prominent list.

“We have the cutting edge tools to support franchises as they ramp up, and we are here to guide them along the way,” continued Kelton.  “Over the next 10 years we plan on aggressive growth nationwide as more and more people are looking to leave the uncertainty of corporate America and take advantage of our franchise model.”

The announcement also comes on the heels of another honor – a spot on Entrepreneur Magazine’s Franchise 500 list.  Showhomes ranked high in several categories, including best Home Based Franchises and Fastest Growing Franchises for the second year in a row.

Showhomes is a member of the International Franchise Association and the Real Estate Stagers Association.  The company has been featured on such media outlets as: CNN, Oprah, HGTV, Travel Channel, CBS, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today and Money Magazine.

For more information on Showhomes Home Staging, visit www.showhomes.com or call (615) 292-0892.