Staging Tips to Increase Your Home’s Value


Simply put, home staging is the process of decluttering and decorating a home to prepare it for real estate photography, inspection, and open houses. Preparing your home this way influences how potential buyers see a home by helping them visualize how the space can be used.

Impact on potential buyers

It’s difficult to imagine living in a space when the home in question is filled with furniture. Home staging provides a clean slate for potential buyers to visualize how they would occupy the place. This ability to imagine is vital to forming an emotional connection, which can be the deciding factor in a sale.

What needs to be kept in mind when home staging?

When it comes time to sell your home, you want to ensure that you put your best foot forward. This means cleaning and decluttering, but it also means staging your home to make it appealing to buyers. Here are some things to keep in mind when staging your home.

1. Thoroughly cleaning the house is essential. Then declutter and depersonalize your space to make it feel spacious and neutral!

2. Make necessary repairs and cosmetic improvements before staging. This might include painting the house’s main rooms using a popular neutral color!

3. Use strategic placement of furniture and newer accessories to create an inviting atmosphere.

4. Keep in mind the target market – what would appeal to them most? 

5. Don’t overspend on staging – many affordable options are available.

If you’re considering putting your home on the market, follow these staging tips to help it sell faster and for a higher price. Home staging is one of the essential steps in preparing your property for sale – it can make or break your chances of success. Follow these simple steps, and you’ll be well on attracting more homebuyers!

Don & Cyndi Shurts, Miami Valley Dream Homes

What part does declutter play in home staging?

Declutter is essential in home staging because it helps to create an open and airy feeling in a space. It also makes the area look cleaner and more organized. Potential home buyers can better visualize the room and how they could use it. Finally, decluttering can help to make a small space appear larger.

Chad Barnsdale, Unfinished Man

Why is scent important for staging?

The scent is essential when staging a home because people tend to remember something better when associating it with a good smell. The opposite can also be valid for a foul scent. A house with a bad smell will be negatively associated with that scent. When staging a home, it’s crucial to professionally steam clean the carpets, which can trap bad odors, especially if the homeowner has pets.

Tyler, Felix Homes

Why is lighting important when home staging?

Lighting is a significant factor when staging a home because it can help you sell quickly for maximum profit or leave your listing stuck on the market for months! The proper lighting can breathe life into a space and transform that room into a selling point, while poor lighting can make rooms appear smaller and less inviting. Remember that light can create the illusion of space, so use it wisely when home staging. Consumers expect to see professional photos online with good lighting in today’s market. If photographs appear dark or uninviting, consumers might scroll right past your listing and never come to see the house!

Ty Fischer, RetireBetterNow.com

ROI of home staging 

Outside of a home inspection, staging your home helps maximize your return on investment. Assuming you hire a professional home staging company, you might pay around 1% of your sale price if you hire a professional home staging company. The ROI can include offers of 5 to 15% over the asking price. Non-staged homes risk not selling, resulting in a reduction in price that can equal anywhere from 5 to 20 times more than staging would have cost.  

Can rental staging lead to higher rent?

For higher-end rental properties, doing some staging will almost certainly help you to achieve a higher price point and help you to attract the type of tenants you want in your property. But first, you should know your target audience and the demographic of the suburb in which your property is located. It’s key to helping decide whether or not staging your property will bring you a higher rental price.

Suppose your property is in a low-income area, and the rental price you’ll be able to achieve is low. In that case, staging may not be a valuable option since prospective tenants can’t afford to pay more than a low weekly rental price, no matter how great the property looks. It won’t be a helpful spend of money that way.

Isabelle de Braux, Soho

Real Estate Photography

Property descriptions give the prospective buyer the details, but photography is what really catches the attention. A well-lit photograph can highlight a home’s features, engaging the buyer’s imagination. Real estate photography can be seen as an extension of home staging since it’s meant to show a home in the best way.

What would be your best advice for real estate photography?

When capturing real estate spaces, you’ll produce a much more desirable image if you follow two important tips:

  1. Shoot Level:

Walking around in space feels normal. Placing a camera in front of our eyes and pointing it down to capture the area. This method produces an image that doesn’t maintain the structural integrity of the space, as the vertical walls/windows/door frames will be slanted. Instead, shooting with the camera pointing parallel to the ground is beneficial. This will result in all vertical walls/windows/door frames being truly vertical, which is more pleasing to look at.

  1.  Shoot at “Eye Level” to the Space:

A successful real estate image should make you feel like you are “in” the space. To accomplish this, the camera must be at “eye level” with the area. For example, if you are shooting a living room, dining room, or bedroom, the camera will likely be just above waist height as all the furniture is lower than the ground. When shooting a taller space, the camera will likely benefit from being about shoulder height. Matching the camera height to the size of the space creates an image that feels natural and inviting.

Lance Selgo, Tips for Real Estate Photography

How do I choose the right photographer for a property photoshoot?

In today’s internet era, it is easy to find photographers in most fields. Be sure to review their work in the field you are interested in (architecture, real estate, event spaces, restaurants, and so on). Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals. You don’t want somebody that will be late for the photo shoot or will not deliver the finished photos in a reasonable amount of time.

Regardless of the price of your property or type of business, you need great marketing, and for that, you will need great photography. Once your space is photo ready, it is just a matter of finding a good photographer to capture and accentuate all its best qualities.

Sacha Griffin, See it 360

Furniture Rental

Unless your furniture is in perfect condition, it’s likely to have scratches, stains, dents, or other signs of use. In a home staging, this furniture would be removed. A professional staging company may provide replacement furniture, but furniture rental is a good choice if you are planning to stage your own home, furniture rental is a good choice. This way, you have the furniture for just long enough to make a sale without having to move it after.

Virtual Staging

Virtual staging is geared toward online real estate shoppers. Physical staging can seem cost-prohibitive, so virtual staging offers a cheaper option. Rather than paying approximately 1% of your sale price for physical staging, you can expect to pay between $20 to $25 per image. This way, you save thousands of dollars while still engaging potential buyers.

What is virtual staging?

Virtual staging is the process of using computer-generated images to furnish vacant properties, but it can also be used for occupied properties. In this case, the existing furniture is digitally replaced by a virtual one. Virtual staging helps save time and money when selling a home, as it eliminates the need to stage the property physically. It can also be used to create realistic mockups of how a space could be furnished, allowing potential buyers to understand better how the property could be used. 

In addition, it also has the benefit of being able to be easily changed or updated if necessary, making it a versatile and adaptable marketing tool for many real estate agents.

Francesca Tosolini, New Interior Solutions

What are the benefits of virtual staging?

Virtual Staging is a method of staging your home that has many advantages over traditional methods. It is simply the easiest way to increase buyer and tenant interest in commercial and residential properties by bringing empty spaces to life with fashionable furniture.

Virtual Staging helps you avoid the costs, time, and labor associated with physically staging a home. It is a fantastic way of helping potential buyers or renters visualize themselves or their families in the house, which helps generate more qualified leads online.

Another significant advantage is that it saves time and means less stress on everyone involved in the sales process. Professional photography can be conducted earlier without waiting for cleaning, furniture, and styling to be carried out. This means the property can go to market sooner, and the seller can find a buyer or tenant faster.

Steven Ungermann, Property Render

What is the most important thing to keep in mind when virtual staging?

For us, it’s our target client and his goal. For real estate professionals who order virtual staging, again, it’s clients and their goals. For example, you might consider bohemian or modern style to get the look younger generation can relate to, and maybe stick closer to traditional for a big family house. Or you can even provide different ideas on how to use the space, options for redevelopment, and so on. 

Real estate professionals have vast experience and know their target audience and potential buyers. In most cases, the most important thing when ordering virtual staging is to use this knowledge and share insights with your virtual staging team.

One of our steady clients, Ashlei De Souza, who is a broker at Serhant and host of Staged show, suggests the following tips to market a listing during the economic downturn:

  • Stage home for needs, not wants
  • Maximize the space to show off the property
  • Create alternate floorplans

Use your expertise and choose a virtual staging vendor you trust to make it all shine!

Oleksandr Lanin, Hasten

Why is visual marketing essential in real estate marketing?

Scientists confirm that the visual cortex processes visuals, enabling us to recall and recognize objects and impacting our decision-making processes. However, not all images are created equal. People are more likely to remember faces, interiors, foreground, and human-scale objects than exteriors, wide-angle vistas, backgrounds, and natural scenes.

There’s a wide variety of multimedia visual content in real estate, including 2D photography, video, infographics, design, 360°, 3D virtual experiences, dollhouse views, floor plans, virtual staging, and drone aerial imaging. It is essential to carefully source images from experienced professional photographers and editors to present the most engaging visual content.

Catering to busy buyers, professionally photographed homes sell 32% faster than other listings, according to VHT. In addition to an accelerated sales process, listings with high-quality photos receive 47% higher asking prices. 

Videos, 360°, and 3D tours have become an industry standard since 77% of homebuyers prefer to take a real estate virtual reality tour before visiting a property. Virtual building tools create detailed floorplans and renderings in the construction planning phase. These virtual tools showcase a property but also serve to better market the services of photographers, marketing, and technology companies.

Jonathan Klein, PropTech Consulting

How can virtual staging help in listings and selling properties?

Whether you just landed a new listing or have had one sitting on the market for a while, virtual staging is a perfect service to utilize during your selling process. It can bring vacant or cluttered rooms to life with unlimited design possibilities through a gallery of interchangeable floors, rugs, furniture, art, wall colors, and more. It allows showcasing a property’s full potential without the cost or time associated with physical staging. Some benefits include:

 1) Cost-Effective- Prices range from $50-100 per room versus traditional staging, which can go into the thousands and beyond.

 2)    Turnaround Time- Virtually staged photos can be edited and delivered in hours and modified as needed.

 3)    Design Choice- You can display rooms in various ways to cater to location and buyer preferences. 

 4)    Home Friendly- Avoids the wear and tear on a home that physical staging brings when moving furniture in and out.

 5)    Less Contact- You can avoid unnecessary contact with movers and focus entirely on selling your home.

While traditional staging carries many benefits for buyers touring a house, with online traffic to listings only increasing, it is now more important than ever to showcase your home online in the best way possible.

Carl Johnson, Realty Plans

Staged homes sell much faster and for more money. Having furniture in a home makes it easier for people to envision living there and helps them get an idea of what the house will look like with furniture.

An empty home looks lonely and uninviting most of the time.

Traditional Staging is expensive. So many realtors prefer virtual Staging because it still gives the buyer a sense of what the home will look like with furniture, and it’s a fraction of the cost of traditional Staging.

The logistics of traditional Staging can also be a challenge. Scheduling the company to get there and set everything up can be challenging if they are already busy. They often run later than expected, which can cause issues for other vendors needing to do things on the property (photographers, inspectors, etc.). So it’s also much easier to do virtual Staging.

Virtual Staging is an excellent way of showing what a vacant property looks like with someone living there at a fraction of the cost of traditional Staging. 

Virtual Staging can also be done very quickly. This helps with listings they need to get onto the MLS as soon as possible.

Rick Farmer, The Listing Edge

Which one is better, virtual or home staging?

Virtual Staging is a relatively new, disruptive technology changing how we view properties for sale or lease in residential spaces. Traditionally, properties were staged by removing all the homeowner’s future and belongings. A staging company would bring in their furniture and decorations so that the properties look more appealing to buyers. This has several downfalls and challenges:

1. Too expensive

Traditional home staging costs anywhere from $3000 and up to stage a small home. With virtual Staging, it can cost as little as $29.99.

2. Logistical Nightmare

Traditional Staging involves movers, storage units, and displacement of the homeowner. Virtual Staging can digitally remove your furnishings and place new ones in their place in a matter of hours without any discomfort to the homeowner.

3. Time-Consuming 

A traditional stager would take a week to stage a home which includes the moving out of furniture and complete Staging of the house after that. Virtual Staging can be ready in a matter of hours, conveniently delivered to you in the form of a downloadable link.

It is obvious why everyone is leaning towards virtual Staging as the industry shifts towards online buying and selling properties.

Snap Houss

Is virtual staging worth it?

It is a great way to list homes for sale to attract potential buyers. It allows you to present several designs and decoration options. You will get high-quality and attractive house images without additional effort.

So, is it worth it?

1. You can save more than 95% of costs compared to traditional staging. You also get ready-made images quickly – often within 24 hours.

2. If you are under construction, you can easily showcase the property before it’s built.

3. You can save money, time, and effort by digitally eliminating unwanted items.

4. 83% of buyers believe virtual staging helps visualize the property’s potential. 

5. You can digitally update any space.

6. You can choose from an extensive furniture and decor items library.

7. It lets you feel how everything is arranged in the house. You can estimate the size of the space, understand what you want to change, examine everything in detail and assess the overall picture. 

One virtual viewing pays off faster for a seller than having people show homes for a few hours. In addition, this is an opportunity to save time and money when choosing future furniture and accessories for the room.

In that way, yes, it’s worth it.

Ira Maksymova , Applet3D

What’s the difference between virtual staging and virtual renovation?

Both these services are a hybrid of a Digital Photograph of the “now” elements and Computer-generated 3D renders of “possible changes.” 

Though both sound similar, there are a few fundamental differences.

Virtually “staged” images help to visualize the change of what “your real estate is” to “what it can be” with new/ different furniture, colors, accessories, and ambiance.

Some examples are placing furniture in a photograph of an empty room or changing the existing furniture, wallpapers, etc., in the photo of the room. An overgrown, unkempt garden can be staged with trees, grass, etc., to make it visually appealing.

Virtually “renovated” images help to showcase a change from what “your real estate is” to “what it will be” after intended structural changes or renovations.

Some examples are what the room will look like if a wall is broken down to create more space and layout changes. A garden under renovation to add a swimming pool can be Computer generated to showcase a completed swimming pool together with deck space, furniture, and ambiance. Change the details of the garden layout, add a deck, change details, etc., in the exterior photographs.

Alison, Plan-it-All

What’s the relation between virtual staging and virtual tours?

A Virtual Tour is a digital 360° interactive replica of physical space.

Virtual Staging is the concept of adding 3D files (furniture, objects, animations) into a Virtual Tour.

Alex Hitchcock, CAPTUR3D

How does virtual staging influence real estate sales?

Virtual staging influences real estate sales in a very positive way. It allows marketing boosts for any property. You may say that any staging is misleading, but it’s not if used properly. It’s a great way to show off the potential. Even if a current design doesn’t exactly match what you plan to have in your new home, you can ask agents for a virtual staging vendor to tweak it a bit.

As for the material aspects:

Staging decreases days on the market up to 30 times

Unstaged properties stuck on the market often lead to a price reduction that is way more expensive than investing in virtual staging and other marketing.

Staging leads to a better sales price.

High-quality visuals can get you a better starting list price and even help sell for over‐list prices.

So it isn’t about saving the staging money – it is about losing the opportunity to sell faster and ending up with a decreased price. It is an upfront investment to maximize the speed of return on the sale. And it makes a measurable impact on properties for sales. Not to mention that it looks professional and brings happy clients with further referrals.

Maria Batryn, Tantify

Hire a professional

In home staging, it’s better to hire a professional instead of doing it yourself. No matter how unbiased you try to be, your DIY home staging will reflect your personal style — which may not be what home buyers want to see. A home stager can declutter and decorate your home in a way that will sell it. 

Even further, a real estate professional can usually offer tips on things you can do to increase your chance of a fast sale. In essence, by hiring a professional, you benefit from their physical labor and their knowledge of the sale process.

Selling a house can be a stressful process, but there are always things you can do to make the whole thing much less so. By having your home professionally staged, you increase your chance of a fast sale above the asking price, you also take some of the guesswork off your plate.