The acceptance and understanding of home staging services as a critical part of a successful real estate marketing package has come a long way in the last five to seven years.

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Even so, the cost of staging investment continues to be questioned and is often considered to be too expensive. I want to share with you what goes into the cost of professional staging services.

Our average vacant staging project for an entire three-bedroom house with a family room, living room, dining room and breakfast area can cost $5,000 to $6,000 before tax. Whoa! What exactly goes into this fee?

  • Approximately 50 per cent of the fee is the rental items. This includes furniture, artwork, rugs, bedding, soft goods and all the small accents. Whether some stagers own their own furniture or rent it, they still have costs associated with them – the cost of renting and purchasing, maintaining and warehousing.
  • Depending on the size of the house and project:

Two to three hours of prep time to plan and design each room so that we can pack for them accordingly;

Four to six hours to stage a project with a team of two stagers;

Two to three hours for a team of two to return once the property is sold to de-stage; and

One to two hours to unpack and return the products back into inventory. In total, nine to 14 hours to complete a three-bedroom vacant project, not including inventory maintenance and travel time.

  • Warehousing costs. The more inventory we carry, the larger the warehouse space required, the more costly the insurance, utilities and maintenance.
  • Transportation. Some stagers lease vehicles, some own as needed in order to transport the staging inventory to and from each project. Not to mention the current high cost of fuel.
  • Last but not least, the everyday cost of running a business including insurance, taxes, dues and fees to belong to various industry associations, office expenses, phone, marketing, inventory and client management systems and a whole host of other expenses.

We all aim to make a 30 per cent gross profit, but it’s challenging. So when you say that home staging is too expensive, is it really considering everything that goes into running a professional home staging business?

Those who offer rock bottom fees will not have the financial resources to stay in business long. Hobbyist are unlikely to carry quality inventory and have all the necessary insurance to protect themselves and the property.

When you consider that home staging can potentially generate thousands in ROI and all that goes into a staging project, is it really expensive?

3 COMMENTS

  1. In a very strong sellers’ market where every property well-marketed sells very quickly, how can one determine what is the plus value of staging a nice and clean vacant house vice virtually staging the same property?

  2. What difference in a selling price could a Seller expect if they agreed to have it staged. Do they pay the amounts listed above. What happens if the house doesn’t sell.

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