Is Home Staging Being Abused to Deceive Buyers?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001 Broker - Realtor - CEO


From original article published in

According to a report I just read today, it is becoming too easy to be fooled by home staging nowadays. Home staging is a term that we, in the real estate world are gradually becoming familiar with. It is the idea that we try to create the best impression for a home when selling it. It used to be that just running the vacuum over it and doing the dishes was enough to prepare your home for sale. .but now. . there is a whole new set of rules to follow!

Home staging is sometimes compared to: As when a woman applies heavy make-up to cover up any imperfections for a "better appearance"

Don't take me wrong, I love and appreciate how women present themselves at all times . . . but the reality is:


First impressions mean a lot . .we are only human!


The basic idea of a  staged home is to make it stand out from all the others and therefore gets sold quicker.

It certainly can be carried to extremes with reports of sellers hiring whole storage units to cart their junk off to temporarily 

Larger items of furniture are encouraged to be put into storage by professional 'home stagers' so that the house looks bigger and more spacious. . .



A well staged house can give you a false sense of security . . especially if it was made under false pretenses. .

Some of the underhand tricks used in some staged homes is the use of smaller furniture to make a room look larger, placing rugs over damaged parts of the floor and in some cases , I seen the use of cheap paint job on to cover defects.

Your buyer agent should help you in this case. .  

Buyers are urged by me to be cautious and to remember that when the house is sold, the staging props are taken away.

Just remember in a staged home. . after is SOLD. . all that nice furniture and props get removed and the square footage of the home , the quality of the neighborhood, and the over-all actual condition of the house remains the same.

I have seen many beautiful homes that transformed disappointing buyers once all the STAGING is removed.



Carlos Herboso  (Buyer Agent Specialist) for

Herboso & Associates llc

Cell     240-671-5542      

Fax: 888-913-353

Office             240-898-1848

What my Clients are saying about me:

My husband and I wanted to thank you for the help in purchasing our new home. After 3 weeks of being in the house we can still not believe one of our biggest dreams come true. From start to finish you were professional, confident and informative.  We truly believe if if were not for your knowledge and experience we would not be in our dream house. There is no greater reward than knowing you helped placed a family in a great neighborhood. Carlos we thank you so much and will enjoy working with you as buy and sell in the future. With lots of love the Chughtai family.

Carlos: Receiving these notes to my attention from your clients makes me wonder if you have some kind of potion to woo them over. . .but I realize that is not a potion but simple honest diligence  and care for your clients. . I'm very proud to be associated with you!

Fernando Herboso . .Broker for Herboso & Associates




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Tni LeBlanc, Realtor®, J.D.
Mint Properties, Lic. #01871795 - Santa Maria, CA
Tenacious Tni (805) 878-9879


I've seen this and the disappointment that follows.  I call it "Model Home Syndrome."  People actually start thinking their house will look like the model.  I do think the smaller furniture trick especially when it comes to beds is deceptive because beds for the most part come in standard sizes.


Jun 14, 2011 11:47 PM #1
Jackie Connelly-Fornuff
Douglas Elliman Real Estate in Babylon NY - Babylon, NY
"Moving at The Speed of YOU!"

I always tell buyers that we are in the MODEL HOME and the one they purchase is not going to look like that. They do know it. I do not see many staged single family homes in my area. I do have a listing that was staged because it needed to be. The home is so big that being empty made the home feel cold. Nothing was covered up or else I would have said something or not have taken the listing.

Jun 14, 2011 11:52 PM #2
Sharon Lee
Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance - Jonesborough, TN
Retired and loving life

Fernando-Nowadays buyers should definitely rely on their "due diligence" for things that are important to them.  There are good and bad people in any profession so the consumer has to be educated when purchasing a home. That saying if something sounds to good to be true it generally is can also apply to "LOOKS" I believe in staging to present the best possible look for your house. It is all about common sense and being able to trust the people who are representing you.

Jun 15, 2011 12:07 AM #3
Tish Lloyd
BlueCoast Realty Corporation - Wilmington, NC
Broker - Wilmington NC and Surrounding Beaches

Fernando ~  I'm in favor of Staging -- to the degree of showing the home in its best light.  I am 100% against covering-up defects.  And, I agree, it is important to make certain the prospect understands their furniture may or may not fit in a particular room.  It's reality time.  Great post!

Jun 15, 2011 12:40 AM #4
Cathy Tarrant

A stager who uses 'underhanded tricks' to prepare a home for the market, is NOT a professional stager. I am a stager, decorator & re-designer and I was taught to NEVER cover up flaws in a house, but to downplay them by accentuating the great features of a home.  I always use queen size beds if at all possible, and do not EVER use a rug to hide defects in a floor. 

I compare it to a woman using make-up to enhance her beauty, not to cover up flaws.  The stagers who use 'make-up' to hide the flaws in a house are not working within their code of ethics.

Have a look at an some of my staging/decorating projects, especially the older downtown vacant house I staged...(the one with the fireplace).  It had an odd shaped small master bedroom and at first look I was doubtful if I could even fit a queen size bed in the room.  But a master has to have at least a queen size so I went for it.  I did not cover up any flaws, I simply proved to potential buyers that yes, you can fit your queen bed in here....AND a media chest AND there is still room for a highboy/armoire.   The windows were covered with simple panels, some art was hung, the bed dressed.  If you were the realtor selling the house, how would you like the house to look to your clients...the before or the after?


Jun 15, 2011 01:08 AM #5
Robert McArtor
RE/MAX Components - Fallston Maryland - Bel Air, MD
Top Listing Agent for Baltimore and Harford County
What I love is the 1956 Home, chipped paint....scratched floors...and the visual tour with model home furniture looks beautiful until the Buyers walk through the house.....OUCH!...they say....WOW....what a waste of I always say....Unless it is priced according to condition and location....forget it!!
Jun 15, 2011 06:49 AM #6
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

As a seller, you need to do whatever you have to do to make your property stand out, even if that is putting makeup on. But, as a buyer, it is your job to investigate a property as much as possible. Talk to the neighbors, get an inspection, pull permits, the truth will come out.

Jun 15, 2011 09:15 AM #7
q99BRF oickilvozwad
Jun 20, 2011 10:23 PM #8
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Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group

301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA
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