5 Steps to Hire a Home Stager

Are you looking to hire a home stager? Selecting the right home stager for your home can add value to your home, showcase the home’s maximum potential and reduce time on the real estate market. You want to make sure you are hiring the best professional for the job as all home stagers aren’t equal. If you are planning to add value to an upcoming listing, here are a few tips for hiring a home stager.

1. Research different home stagers

Ask your friends, realtor, and neighbors for referrals of home staging companies they have used and trust. Read reviews online and check to see what others are saying about companies you are interested in using. Stagers often use testimonials and statistics to promote homes they have previously staged. Make note of the average time on the market for homes the companies have staged, what percentage of homes receive offers in 30 days, and what percentage of homes sold over asking price. Some home stagers specialize in specific styles or time periods like mid-century modern, coastal beach house, contemporary, or traditional luxury. See if the home stagers have specialties like specific architectural style of homes they usually stage, particular price point ranges they usually work in like luxury homes, or area of the city they typically work in. Spending time researching home stagers could save you time and resources in the home selling process.

 2. Review portfolio of photos

Ultimately, the goal of home staging is to prepare a home visually for sell in the real estate market. You are purchasing a service that focuses on visual appeal. Carefully review the photos of the home staging company’s work. Are the photos in the portfolio professional in appearance and does the stager’s style fit your home? Is the styling on trend and the furniture up to date? Make sure the portfolio matches the look you are trying to achieve. Some companies have other design services like interior design or redesign, so when viewing photos online, be sure the photos you are viewing are home staging photos and not projects with a higher budget.

3. Check the staging company’s qualifications

Do you want to hire a hobbyist or professional? Experience and qualifications can help differentiate the amateurs from the experienced home staging companies. Education, certifications, and length of experience can contribute to a smoother service experience. Home stagers might have an educational background in interior design, home furnishings, or have completed home staging courses. Industry certifications are available through nationally recognized organizations that accredit home stagers. Home staging businesses have access to continuing education courses, conferences, professional affiliations, certifications, and many other resources as a professional in the staging industry. Years in business and number of homes staged add hands-on experience that may help to overcome challenges. Lastly, the home stager should be experienced with the home size and price point of your home- the scale and price point of furniture should parallel the home. You want to be sure that you are working with a well-trained, qualified, and distinguished professional who is considered the best in the industry.

4. Request a Quote

After you have done your research and have a solid list of home stagers you are interested in, request a quote. In order to give an accurate quote, stagers may request information of which rooms need to be staged, if the home is vacant or occupied, square footage of the home, listing price, city or neighborhood the home is in, and how soon you are looking to stage. After receiving quotes from stagers there are a few things to review. Is the quote an all-inclusive one-time fee or will there be additional fees for services? Does the company own inventory or will they be renting inventory from another company? Be sure to review the length of the quote-- will the property be staged for 30, 60, or 90 days? Shop around to determine an average price for the services you are requesting.  

5. Compare Prices

Home staging service prices vary based on the size of the home, location, supply and demand of home stagers in your real estate market, and type of services requested. A consultation with a written report is usually priced between $150-$400. According to the Real Estate Staging Association, a Texas home 2,501-3000 square feet in size, occupied staging with some furniture rental is $1600- $2700, and vacant staging is $2500- $4900. Vacant home staging price quotes are calculated on the number of rooms being staged, the square feet of the property, length of contract, location, and the listing price. Luxury or high-end properties are more expensive to stage as the value of furniture increases with the listing price. A quote for vacant staging usually includes the design, furniture, delivery, staging, and de-stage. The return on investment is important but remember, cheapest is not always best.

Selecting the wrong home stager for your property could be an absolute waste of money and resources. Do your research, review photos in their portfolio, check qualifications, request a quote, and compare prices should be the steps taken to hire a home stager. Make sure you are selecting the best professional for your property.