Contemporary living room staged for sale

Home Staging: What It Is & How It Works

Trying to sell your home? You might want to look into home staging. Homes that have been staged typically sell faster and for more money, according to the National Association of Realtors. But what exactly is home staging and what does it entail? Below, we’ll walk you through the basics of staging a home and whether it’s worth it for your situation.

What Is Home Staging?

Blue and cream living room, staged home for sale. Photo by Instagram user @citrineliving
Photo via @citrineliving

Home staging is a process in which professional home stagers—or sometimes even your own realtor—switch out, add, or remove furniture and decor from your home to give it a more modern, aspirational touch.

Think of it like marketing. A home stager knows the type of buyer who will be interested in your house, and they’re essentially decorating the space to appeal to that buyer to help your home sell faster and for more money.

Most potential buyers want to envision themselves in a fully-furnished space, not an empty house. And in many cases, buyers want to experience a potential home in a neutral sense—that is, uncluttered by personal items or decor that doesn’t fit their style. Home staging creates that environment.


What Does Home Staging Include?

Staged contemporary bedroom. Photo by Instagram user @sagewoodinteriors
Photo via @sagewoodinteriors

Often, home staging begins with a consultation. During this consultation, the staging professional or realtor will come to your home, evaluate what buyers will like about it, and what should be done before listing photos are taken and the home is shown to potential buyers.

From here, the home staging process depends on your unique situation. The staging might be as simple as rearranging some furniture to open up your home and better utilize the space. Or it could more involved, like repainting the walls, removing personal clutter, and furnishing entire rooms.

How Do You Stage a Home While Living in It?

Staged home with modern dining room. Photo by Instagram user @layofthelandstaging
Photo via @layofthelandstaging

There are pros and cons to staging a home that you’re still living in. The big benefit is that the cost of staging could be much lower since professional stagers can work with the furniture you already have in your home.

The downside is that it requires more upkeep throughout the process—specifically, regular cleaning and decluttering on the seller’s part. One way sellers can make it easier to keep a home staged while still living in it is to rent a storage unit. This allows sellers to temporarily store items that might negatively influence buyers and ensure the home stays clutter-free.

How Do You Stage a Home with No Furniture?

Staging a home, modern luxury bathroom. Photo by Instagram user @guettlerphoto
Photo via @guettlerphoto

When selling a vacant home, one option is to rent furniture to place throughout the house. This is highly effective and should be done before professional real estate photos are taken. You can also hire a professional home stager to come in and add furniture. Unfortunately, both of these options can be on the expensive side of home staging.

In many cases, virtual home staging is a simple, affordable alternative and can be done after photos are taken of the vacant property. With virtual staging, furniture is digitally placed into the photos, allowing potential buyers viewing your home listing to get an idea of what your home would look like with furniture. This can go a long way in helping to improve the chances that your home will sell.

Of course, there is a downside of using virtual home staging. While the images of the spaces look great online, the house will still be vacant when the buyer visits for a showing. Typically, potential buyers know that a home was staged virtually, but it can still be jarring to walk into an empty space.

Does Home Staging Work?

Overhead view of staged living room. Photo by Instagram user @katkrogphotog
Photo via @katkrogphotog

How effective is home staging? Staged homes sell much faster than non-staged homes. In fact:

  • Non-staged homes spent an average of 184 days on the market.
  • After staging, these previously non-staged homes sold on average in 41 days.
  • Homes that were staged prior to going on the market sold on average in 23 days.

The entire purpose of staging a home is to help get it sold. These statistics show that’s exactly what it does.​

Is Home Staging Worth It?

Staged contemporary bedroom. Photo by Instagram user @popsofcolorhome
Photo via @popsofcolorhome

Is home staging worth the investment? According to, staged homes sell on average for 20% more than non-staged homes. Selling faster also saves the seller a significant amount in carrying costs.

In other words, the investment you make in staging your home ahead of putting it up for sale can ultimately pay for itself with a faster sale. After all, the longer your home sits unsold, the more likely it is that you won’t be able to get your asking price.

Is Home Staging Necessary?

Staged modern kitchen. Photo by Instagram user @laruchecreative
Photo via @laruchecreative

Homes can be sold without being staged. But if you’re talking about selling quickly and for top dollar, staging is a necessity. Even in a seller’s market where homes are sold in a matter of days, staging can lead to even more showings, more offers, and better opportunities. Staging your home could be the difference between one good offer that you have to accept or multiple good offers and a bidding war that benefits you.


Is Staging Your Home Tax Deductible?

Staged living room. Photo by Instagram user @peregrinehomestaging
Photo via @peregrinehomestaging

Home staging can be tax deductible! Essentially, the IRS views home staging as an advertising expense for the home, so the cost of staging your home can be deducted as part of your selling expenses.

Ready to sell your home? Learn more from these helpful guides:


Preparing your home for sale? Move personal items, valuable belongings, and clutter to self storage at Extra Space Storage. We have convenient storage facilities throughout the nation. Find a storage unit today!

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If you're about to put your home on the market, you might want to look into home staging. But what is home staging, and how can it help you sell your house? Learn more in this helpful guide! via @extraspace

One thought on “Home Staging: What It Is & How It Works

  1. It’s great that this article explains how the first step of home staging begins with having a professional come to your house and evaluate it in order to figure out what changes to make. Having someone who knows what they’re doing could help you make the space as appealing as possible in order to bring in more buyers. When choosing a professional for your home staging, you’d probably want to research the different ones in your area and check out their website in order to learn more about their experience, methods, and the services they offer.

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