There are a lot of misconceptions about the cost for home staging. People always seem to be surprised and maybe even a bit shocked (and not in a good way) when they get the quote to stage their property, especially for vacant properties.
First and foremost, it is important for consumers to realize that Home Staging is a cost an investment, the final investment they will make in their current home. And like any investment, consumers receive a return on that investment (ROI) and an amazing return at that. HomeGains reports that consumers may reap a whopping 299% return on the money they invest in staging their home before selling it. With an occupied home, if the owner were to invest just $400 by hiring a professional home stager before listing their home, it will earn them a higher selling price of nearly $1200.
It has been proven time and again that staged homes sell faster and in this market, for full asking price and sometimes higher than unstaged homes. RESA (REAL ESTATE STAGING ASSOCIATION) reports that in 2009 (the most recent year currently available) staged homes spent 78% less time on the market than their unstaged counterparts. The report looked at unstaged homes previously listed and concluded that they sat on the market an average of 263 days unsold. Those same homes were then staged and sold in 60 days on average after staging. The same study states that properties that were staged before they went on the market and sold in 40.5 days on average after staging.
Most home staging companies offer a variety of options for consumers to choose from. Services may include and range from a low $99 for a one hour verbal consultation to about $350 for a DIY (Do It Yourself) Report to $900 for a full day of staging by the home stager. Consumers can select the option that works best for them and make arrangements to hire the stager for any or all of the staging. Or, if they purchase the DIY Report, homeowners can complete all of the recommendations themselves and the stager will come back for a final walk through and to take "after" pictures.
90% of the population cannot see past the current decor of a property nor can they envision what their belongings will look like in an empty room. They won't be able to guage whether or not their furniture will fit the space and they need to physically see how the area can be made to look and how the space can be used. That's one of the reasons it is so important to stage vacant properties. Builders have known for years that catering to the lifestyle potential buyers want is integral to the success of their new home sales. So, they invest thousands and thousands of dollars going all out to stage the model homes in a way that will draw buyers in. They know that creating that emotional attachment will bring in the offers.
The investment to stage a vacant home is higher than that of an occupied home. Stagers will do their best to work with the owner's existing furnishings which saves the seller a lot of money. In the case of a vacant property, the stager will bring in the furniture, accessories, artwork, plants, area rugs and lighting needed to create a home that will appeal to a broad range of buyers as well a home that creates that emotional attachment for potential buyers.
Now that you understand that home staging is the final investment you will make on your present property and you have learned that staged homes sell faster and for the best price, let's talk about what you are paying for. How does the home stager come up with your total investment costs.
In an earlier blog article, I talked about the process your stager will go through to prepare your home for market. To quickly recap, your stager will:
Meet with you and conduct a walk through and take "before" photos
Prepare/Discuss all of the steps you need to take before staging can begin
Create Room Design for each room to be staged
Select Inventory for each room
Select Furniture, Lighting, Bed & Bath Linens, Artwork, Accessories, Plants
Prepare/Wrap/Load/Transport to property
Deliver/Unload/Unwrap for set up
Determine Room Configuration & Set up Inventory
Once your home has been staged, your home stager will take "after" pictures and write blogs and articles and create marketing presentations for their portfolio and to advertise your home on ActiveRain, Energized Seller, their company blogs and other platforms. Many stagers do not charge for these and offer them as complimentary services.
And after your property sells, your stager must then destage the house which includes preparing/wrapping/loading and transporting all of the inventory back to the storage facility and then unload and restock it.
Your home stager will spend many, many hours prepping for the day your home will be staged, many more hours than you will be charged for. Your stager will spend a few restless nights during the creative process coming up with the perfect plan for your home. Your stager may even return to the property while it's on the market to ensure that everything is still in perfect order for open houses or showings. Again, most won't charge for this.
As you can see, there is a lot of work that goes into the home staging process. So when your stager is preparing the quote for your home, he/she has to take into account all the time, energy and resources that will be needed. Your stager may rent the furniture and will pass on those fees to you, the client, you will pay a rental fee on all of the accessories from their stock or they may have to do some shopping for some additional items. Or your home stager may have their own warehouse filled with all of the furniture and accessories. In that case, the furniture rental fee will take into account all of the overhead needed to maintain the warehouse as well as a prorated or percentage-based fee on the cost of inventory used in your home.
Regardless, it's important for consumers to realize all the expenses your home stager has to cover. Expenses may include a mortgage/rent payment on the storage facility or rental fees from the furniture rental company, insurance for the storage facility, liability and car, employee salaries and associated costs, utilities, marketing, professional fees, all the costs associated with any business.
Staging costs vary by region and as such, what it might cost to stage a home in California will be different from what a home in rural New Hampshire costs. Some staging companies may have a fixed starting point or minimum fee regardless of the size of the property. Your home stager may charge based on the square footage of the home or as a percentage of the selling price.
You may think that staging a 850sq ft home should cost far less than a 3000sq ft home. And although that might be true, in most cases, your stager is still renting the same basic furniture no matter what the size of the property. There will be a sofa and one or two chairs, occasional tables,(X2 if there is a living room and family/bonus room) dining table and chairs, beds and nightstands. There will be artwork, bed and bath linens, table and floor lamps, plants and decorative accessories in every room.
So what goes into your quote? Your home stager will prepare a quote that will take into account among other things, rental fees for all the furniture, rental fees for all of the accessories used in your home and labor for the entire project. To determine the labor costs, your stager has to account for all of the business expenses, inventory costs, employee-related costs and a reasonable "profit" that allows your them to pay their personal debts and obligations and enables their company to stay in business.
And now you know all of the work that goes into staging your home and you know what you can expect to be included when you receive your home staging quote. With staged homes selling within 60 days and sitting on the market 78% less time than unstaged homes, this is an investment that is well worth making.
Great Agent + Home Staging + Priced Right Property =
Pro Staged Homes is a professional home staging company. Our staged properties sell in 54.5 days on average from the date staged.
Proven results in priced right-staged homes sales