Today I followed up a message I had received from a Realtor over the weekend. Seems they'd been working with "another home stager" who was not available for a new listing and they wanted to know if I did "free consultations" because their "other stager" did them for free.
Inside I kinda cringed and I said "No, I don't, nor do I know any professional home stager locally who does."
I also went on to say that as the RESA Texas State President and member of RESA it's not something I'd ever recommend or do as a home stager. It's my intellectual property I'm sharing and every detailed home staging consultation is specific to each home. I also said, "I can't imagine how someone can make a living doing it for free either". Funny thing was, the Realtor actually rather agreed.
If you're a home stager and you're reading this and you are giving away your services for free, and YES A HOME STAGING CONSULTATION IS A PAID FOR SERVICE - You need to STOP and realize that not only does this devalue you and your professionalism it does the same for the industry.
Don't be so cheap that you're free as some mommas would say!
Have some pride and confidence in yourself and the service you provide because INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IS A COMMODITY and is rightfully worth being paid for.
I can totally understand the feelings when starting out in your business and rationalizing that offering FREE anything is tempting and can open doors for you. You may tell yourself that it helps get your name out, you get much needed experience, etc. This practice can actually harm you in the long run as you are setting precedents that can undermine you and your business by essentially saying that:
- Your services aren't worth paying for
- You don't really have the knowledge or confidence in what you are doing
- Others should expect you to be so cheap that you end up working for free
Now we all could be extremely busy working for free, but is that really running a business?
Why do home stagers, especially it seems those who aren't running a home staging business, feel the need to give it away for free?
And worse, why would anyone feel comfortable enough to ask? (the expectation in the minds of some has already been set as to what service we provide)
Would any self respecting electrician or plumber ever not get paid after visiting your home, even in some cases if they found nothing wrong and only checked an appliance? Service call charges anyone??
I write this with the knowledge and understanding that over time and perseverance you too can feel confident enough in your abilities to not only feel comfortable accepting payment for doing your job but also letting others know why you do and refusing to be taken advantage of. I have actually raised my rates this year and do not go to any property without commitment of payment first. I make no bones about it as I know that the service I provide brings value and equity to my clients.
I know my worth and why I am paid and so should you!
Home Star Staging is a qualified, insured home staging company and we are always here for you North Texas!
- Affordable pre-list home staging property consultations
- Affordable post list "trouble shooting" property consultations - no matter how long a home has been on the market there are always ways to improve the chance of sale
- Owner occupied property staging (utilizing owner supplied furniture & accessories or including some of our own inventory)
- Vacant & investment property staging (Full and partial rental furniture packages, accessories and staging services)
- Is your office interested in hosting a home staging class or presentation? Just ask!
- Contact Karen at 496-964-0516 or Karen@homestarstaging.com
Interested in learning how to start a successful home staging business where youcan actually get paid in TX, OK or NW LA? I can help! North Texas SAR Texas Home Staging Training Classes