Special offer

Offering Free Home Staging

Home Stager with Spruce It Up! Oregon's Real Estate Stager

"Offering free home staging".  Magic words or at least attractive words to sellers. But those words aren't coming from professional stagers, they're coming from listing agents.  Smart agents who know the real value of this unbelievably effective marketing tool.  Here's advice to sellers who consider signing a listing contract for that reason or sellers who recognize what an important added service that is. Be sure you understand exactly what professional staging services your listing agent plans to provide.  You might get a comprehensive consultation with a Professional Home Stager, a great benefit and a great Do-It-Yourself tool that will mean a (often much faster) successful sale for you.  Or...your agent could be offering a limited consultation with a pro, even offering to pay part of a professional stagers fee if you agree to have the staging done.  To some listing agents offering "Free Home Staging", however, that means placing towels in the bathrooms and a plant on the kitchen windowsill.  I'm NOT implying that the listing agent is trying to mislead anyone, only that the level of education and skill in Home Staging that a Realtor has can range from very little to Realtors who are actually certified or accredited as Professional Stagers.  You might notice I keep saying "Professional Stager", I just want to be clear.  Just as a homeowner would hesitate to have their very skilled, very conscientious plumber install a new roof, or ask the landscape maintenance company to paint the house, hesitate long enough to find out if the staging you get is up to the same quality and standard as you'd expect from a Professional Stager.  A good Real Estate Marketing Team is set up to let the members do what they each do best.

Posted by

Liz Harrison President/Staging Consultant

Spruce It Up Home Staging and Redesign

Comments (12)

Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

I am sure that you will have some sellers ready to take you up on this offer.  Lots of good tips.

Nov 21, 2009 12:07 PM
Liz Harrison
Spruce It Up! Oregon's Real Estate Stager - Salem, OR
ASP, Home Staging Consultant

I'd bet many sellers would take me up on the offer!  But I'm not offering free staging. I'm the Professional Stager who works very hard for every cent of my fees. Because I know clients get their money's worth many times over with staging, I won't plan on doing any freebies.  But I do encourage the REA's I work with to cover the cost of some staging for their listing clients. They too get a great return on the investment. When the client's home sells quickly, the REA gets paid sooner for their services and they don't have to carry the expenses of advertising the listing for months and months. And with delighted clients, they're certain to get more referrals.  Yep...home staging can help grow a Realtor's client base!

Nov 21, 2009 02:11 PM
Allegra Dioguardi
Styled and Sold Home Staging and Staging Training - Westhampton Beach, NY
Home Staging & Training, Suffolk Co. Long Island

I concur 100%. There is no free ride but there is a great return on your investment when it comes to "professional" home staging!

Nov 22, 2009 01:20 AM
Joan Inglis, Master Accredited Staging Professional
Carolina Spaces, LLC www.CarolinaSpaces.com - Charlotte, NC
Home Staging, Model Merchandising, Interior Design

I like your post!  Haven't we professionals all tired of the desperate people offering "free" home staging?  Yes, the unsuspecting customer and/or potenital client needs to beware and ask questions! 

Nov 22, 2009 01:27 AM
Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging
Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR - Portland, OR
"Staging Consultations that Sell Portland Homes"

Liz ~ good post -- homesellers definitely need to be educated about the levels of "staging" that are out there.  Sorry, but some Realtors who "stage" and then take photos of their "staging" do an atrocious job.  Professional home stagers are fulltime experts in their field and their expertise makes all the difference.

Nov 22, 2009 04:53 AM
Kate Talarico
Kates Home Staging and Interior Design - Goshen, NY
RESA, Top Orange County Home Decorator & Stager

Thank you for breaking it all out and explaining it.  "Free home staging" can mean many different things. I studied at two home staging schools and continue to educate myself on staging and design issues.  Maureen  makes a good point, professional home stagers are experts and that makes a big difference. 

Nov 22, 2009 11:51 AM
Liz Harrison
Spruce It Up! Oregon's Real Estate Stager - Salem, OR
ASP, Home Staging Consultant

Thanks for all your comments. I love my affiliation with like-minded pros! Clearly we want wants best for the seller. It's OK to know that we're in a good position to give them the best!

Nov 22, 2009 03:31 PM
melody salazar
Salazar Staging & Custom Interiors - New Braunfels, TX

Liz,  Good post on a fuzzy area.  For those of us who have been certified and have worked hard to becfome professional stagers, it can be a little aggravating to hear of realtors offering staging themselves IF they have no background in this field.  As you know,  staging is made up from many learned skills and techniques.  Throwing some towels and candles willy nilly, cannot be construed as good staging.  I'm not saying all realtors are limited with staging skills, but those who have not been trained should leave this important marketing tool to those who have been!

You made an excellent analogy - "Just as a homeowner would hesitate to have their very skilled, very conscientious plumber install a new roof..." - That says it all!

Thanks for the good post,


Nov 24, 2009 01:51 AM
Laura Sampson
Happy Home Stager, LLC - Clermont, FL
Principal Stylist, CEP Trainer

I'd like to believe that people choose their profession because they have a passion & will always shine in that field if they are specialists.  As a Home Stager, I will not sell my home myself nor will I stage me home myself.  I know that RE Agents are better equipped and another Home Stager doesn't have an emotional tie to my house like I do.  I want to get the most $$ and have the sale go smoothly.  As long as we all stay focused on achieving the best for clients, we will never see "Free Home Staging" ever again.

Thanks for the thoughts & post.

Nov 24, 2009 10:22 AM
melody salazar
Salazar Staging & Custom Interiors - New Braunfels, TX


Interesting you don't want to stage your own house.  I'm glad for my expertise in staging and will certainly apply it to my own house.  It may have taken me a little bit of time, but when I got honest with myself, I got HARD on myself!  Now we're doing everything we should be doing and are glad that we have my staging skills to guide us- one thing we don't have to pay for but certainly feel fortunate to be privy to.  Are you sure you don't want stage your own house???


Nov 24, 2009 10:32 AM
Laura Sampson
Happy Home Stager, LLC - Clermont, FL
Principal Stylist, CEP Trainer


I'd could stage my own home however I think it is always best to get an objective opinion.  :)

Nov 24, 2009 10:38 AM
Anne Vigneri
CASA VERO Staging & Redesign - Albuquerque, CA
Serving the Mariposa California


Interesting that the topic of staging your own home has come up!... We've all been taught that the homeowner can't "see" his home the way outsiders do..  Is this true even for us "pros"?.. 

I did stage my own home when we sold it six years ago. I thought it looked wonderful. and we had nine offers in less than a week. And if I were to sell my current home (which I do not anticipate doing for a very long time!), there is no one I would trust more than myself to do it again!.. In fact I look at my home through stager's eyes all the time!..I'll bet most of us do!. I know what would need to be changed, removed, renovated, etc... ( Starting with, what the heck would I do with the dogs? )

Interesting topic.. 


Dec 06, 2009 08:40 AM