How much does it cost to stage a house?
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Home Staging Cost Guide
Updated: August 18, 2022
When trying to sell your home, home staging makes a big difference. This process brings interior design experts into your home to enhance its appearance by moving furniture around or adding new decorative pieces and accessories.
On average, a homeowner pays $1,000 to $3,000 to have their home staged professionally, but you can find home staging services much cheaper or more expensive. The average homeowner can expect to pay $1,500 for an initial consultation, a day of staging, and no furniture rental. A simple consultation is around $200. A full-service staging with furniture rentals and redesign costs up to $10,000.
Cost to Hire a Home Stager
|Home Staging Costs|
|National average cost||$1,500|
What Is Home Staging?
Home staging is the process of organizing, redesigning, and preparing a home for sale in a way that is aimed at attracting more buyers and showing off the potential of the space. The main purpose of home staging is to sell a property more quickly by making it more enticing to the greatest number of buyers. This may be done in various ways. On a basic level, home staging involves moving furniture around and clearing up the clutter. Or it may involve entire redesigns of rooms at the more advanced levels, with new paint on the walls and rented furniture to change the look and feel of the home. In the best-case scenario, home staging leads to more bids coming in on a property, resulting in a higher sale price.
Cost of Staging an Empty House vs Occupied Home Staging
One of the main factors influencing the cost to stage a house is whether the house is occupied at the time. If your home is still occupied and filled with quality furniture and artwork, this drastically reduces the home staging price. Many stagers charge less for occupied homes because they already have a base to work with and can use your existing furniture and accessories to the best of their abilities. This leads to lower total costs, averaging around $1,000 to $3,000. However, this depends on the type of furniture in your home and whether it is cluttered. If so, decluttering and organization costs add up, and new furniture may still need to be rented, leading 2 to a higher total price.
Empty homes typically have higher costs because they have little to no furniture. The home stager has to bring in their furniture and artwork, adding furniture rental costs to your total bill. The cost to stage empty home averages around $1,000 to $3,000 more per month for furniture rental than an occupied house. The total staging costs average $4,000 to $6,000.
|Occupied House Staging||$1,000 - $3,000|
|Empty House Staging||$4,000 - $6,000|
Home Staging Cost per Hour
Calculating the cost to sate a house per hour is difficult because many professionals charge different amounts for different services. Usually, house stagers charge for an initial consultation and, after that, a monthly fee. You may pay between $100 and $250 per hour for a two-hour initial consultation. The monthly fee largely depends on the scope of the project. Although unusual, if you are charged per hour, the actual fees per hour run between $25 and $150. There may also be hourly costs to consider for painting, storing your items, decluttering, packing, and more. This leads to varying hourly rates, depending on the level of service.
Home Staging Cost Breakdown
While many people purchase several home staging services at once, the professional stager cost varies depending on which are chosen. Some of the different services homeowners may choose include organization, consultations, redesign services, furniture rental, furniture arrangement, color consultation, decluttering, packaging, and storage. Costs range from $100 for minimal organization services to $1,250 for major redesign. The services you choose impact the price to stage a house. Below are breakdowns of costs for each of the services:
|Home Staging Services and Prices||Average Cost|
|Color Consultation||$50 - $400|
|Furniture Arrangement||$250 - $350/room|
|Initial Consultation (2 Hours)||$200 - $500|
|Furniture Rental||$50 - $70/room and month|
|Organization||$100 - $800|
|Decluttering, Packaging and Storage||$500 - $1,000|
|Redesign||$250 - $1,250|
A staging cost for a house sale is color consultation, which costs about $50 to $400. One of the biggest benefits of a color consultation is the price. This process makes a huge difference in the aesthetics of a house without spending a lot of money. While everyone is different in terms of color preference, a color consultation gives you insights into color theory to make your house appealing to the largest number of people. Once these colors are used, the house flows visually and feels more cohesive.
Furniture arrangement is an important part of the home staging process. It averages $250 to $350 per room. Once your rental furniture has arrived at the property, the stager arranges it to bring out the best in each room. The main purpose of furniture arrangement is to make a house, apartment, or townhouse look more visually appealing. Moving the furniture creates more interesting spaces and offers balance, making potential buyers more likely to feel at home in the space.
Home Staging Consultation
A home staging consultation is usually between $200 to $500. In the initial consultation, a house stager comes to your property and looks around, making suggestions to improve the appearance and design of various rooms to attract more buyers. Since this is just a consultation, they do not perform any physical staging, but they may give useful information to sell your home.
Home Staging Furniture Rental
The prices vary from $50 to $700 per month per room for furniture rental real estate staging costs. Furniture rental is an integral part of the process. Items like desks, lamps, rugs, sofas, and artwork are chosen by stagers and rented out to temporarily decorate your house during the staging period. Furniture rental is often only offered when staging empty houses to avoid damage, loss, or misuse of the rented items. Some rooms may be much cheaper to furnish than others. For example, an office with a simple desk is cheaper than a living room needing a new sofa, lamps, and rugs. Companies usually offer rental periods of 45 to 60 days, after which rental may continue if the homeowner pays an additional fee. The table below shows estimates for each room.
|Room||Type of Furniture or Item||Average Furniture Rental Cost|
|Office||Desk, lamp, drawers||$50 - $300|
|Kitchen||Cutlery, plates, glasses||$50 - $300|
|Dining Room||Table, chairs, art||$100 - $500|
|Living Room||Sofa, chairs, art||$200 - $700|
|Bedroom||Bed, drawers, art||$250 - $700|
On average, organization done as a part of home staging ranges from $100 to $800. This involves making the space look clean, accessible, and pleasant for potential buyers. It is an intentional process that ensures the items that remain in the house are in the best place. An organized house seems open and is more likely to sell than one that has not had organization done. Organization can be used to incorporate your furniture into the staging rather than renting items and spending more on the process.
Decluttering, Packaging, and Storage
The process of decluttering, packaging, and selecting storage for your house as a part of the staging process ranges from $500 to $1,000. The main purpose of this step in staging is to move out any items that will not help sell the house. Many homeowners have a lot of clutter which creates a negative feeling for potential buyers. By decluttering, packaging up items you want to keep, and placing them in storage, the home is more of a blank slate that others can imagine themselves living in.
The average cost to stage a house through redesign ranges from $250 and $1,250. The basic purpose of a redesign is to change the appearance and function of a home or a room inside of it. Redesigns typically use existing home belongings in new ways to create a fresh aesthetic. During the redesign, a professional creates focal points and visual interest while creating a natural traffic flow through the home. It provides an upscale look without spending money on new furniture and fixtures.
Home Staging Pricing Packages by Level of Involvement
Various elements are involved in the process to stage a house with a range of different services options. You might opt for something simple, such as a basic consultation where a professional home stager gives pointers on rearranging the furniture to draw in more buyers, and then you do the rest of the work yourself. This leaves you to handle organization, redesign, decluttering and packing, and other tasks. Soft staging, which includes only consultation costs, ranges from $200 to $500. If you add any other tasks to the consultation costs, the price increases. Some of the most common home staging packages are consultation and organization, consultation, decluttering, packing and storage, and consultation, organization and redesign.
Alternatively, you might choose to have a full-service or complete home staging, covering absolutely everything mentioned above and additional extras like kitchen cabinet refinishing. Usually, full-service home staging covers four rooms in the home at the cost of $4,000 to $10,000. Full-service staging is the best choice for people willing to spend the extra cash to have their homes redesigned and ready for speedy sales once they hit the market. This service level includes entire home assessments, organization, decluttering, color schemes, painting, packing, storage, rental furniture, arrangement, and more. The table below shows some home staging services and average costs.
|Home Staging Price List||Average Cost|
|Consultation Only||$200 - $500|
|Consultation and Organization||$600 - $1,200|
|Consultation, Decluttering, Packing, and Storage||$700 - $1,500|
|Consultation, Organization, and Redesign||$1,000 - $2,000|
|Full-Service Home Staging||$4,000 - $10,000|
Home Staging Cost by Number of Bedrooms
The number of bedrooms in your home impacts the home’s staging cost because bedrooms tend to be the most expensive rooms to stage. The exact costs vary, depending on how much work needs to be done. Most companies do not stage houses in their entirety. When a full staging service is offered, it usually only involves staging the main rooms in a house: family room, formal living room, formal dining room, primary suite, and kitchen. The table below shows general national averages to stage houses of different sizes:
|Number of Bedrooms||Occupied Home Staging Cost||Empty House Staging Cost|
|Studio||$250 - $1,000||$3,000 - $4,000|
|1 Bedroom||$500 - $1,500||$3,500 - $4,500|
|2 Bedrooms||$1,000 - $2,000||$4,000 - $5,000|
|3 Bedrooms||$1,500 - $2,500||$4,500 - $ 5,500|
|4 Bedrooms||$2,000 - $3,000||$5,000 - $6,000|
Apartment Staging Cost
Apartments tend to be much smaller than homes, so the price to stage them will also be less. The average size of an apartment in the United States is about 900 square feet, making them smaller than typical homes and condos. The prices range from about $600 to $1,900 on average. Larger apartments will be more expensive to stage than small ones. In addition, the number of bedrooms factors into the equation. If many rooms need to be staged, the total could be similar to a condo or home.
Condo Staging Costs
Since condos tend to be relatively small, with an average size of 1,200 square feet, compared to typical family homes ranging from 2,000 to 3,000 square feet, they are usually less expensive to stage. However, this depends on the level of staging required and the number of rooms. If you have multiple bedrooms, a kitchen, and a living room all in need of staging, the price may not be too different from a regular house. Costs for condo staging range from $800 to $2,500.
Virtual Staging Cost
Virtual staging is an alternative method that takes photos of empty or badly decorated rooms and crafts a gorgeous interior through digital technology. Computerized or virtual staging lets designers quickly enhance a home to make the home sell quicker than it would without staging. In addition, virtual staging is less expensive than traditional home staging. The average virtual staging price ranges from $75 to $150 per room. This type of staging is done on a computer and does not require being at the property that is being staged. This requires less time and labor while providing excellent results. The primary drawback is that the home itself is not actually staged, so potential buyers who walk through will not get the full experience.
Benefits of Staging a Home
There are several benefits to staging your home, and one of the most obvious is that it should speed up the sale of your property and possibly lead to a higher sale price. Home staging is designed to attract more buyers and help your home stand out from the crowd. When browsing through listings online, staged homes tend to be more attractive to buyers due to the room’s beautiful photos and modern layouts. This encourages more people to book viewings of your home and increases the probability of a bidding war between buyers. This is a great option for people who want to sell quickly and move on to their next property.
Staging also does a great job of decluttering untidy homes and organizing spaces that might not be used to the best of their ability. It is also a terrific choice for people who do not want to do all the hard work themselves or worry that their home’s style will not bring in buyers. Stagers bring out the best aspects even in condos, small homes, and older properties that have seen better days.
On the downside, there are some cons to staging, starting with the price. Between consultations, furniture rentals, painting fees, and moving costs, the total quickly adds up. If your home does not sell quickly, you need to continue paying additional staging costs in the following months.
Some people are very proud and happy with how they decorated their homes, and they may not like the idea of someone else coming in and changing everything. Even if you are selling the property and moving on, it might be difficult to see all your decoration and design efforts covered up or changed.
Also, be aware that with staging, there are no guarantees. Statistics show that staging helps homes sell faster in most cases, but this does not happen for every property. And, there are some issues that staging cannot fix. For example, if your home is on a noisy street or opposite a power plant, staging helps the rooms look nicer, but you may still struggle to sell.
How to Save Money on Home Staging
If home staging costs seem a little steep, there are ways to save while still getting many of the same benefits. You may not need to stage every room in the house. Simply having a beautiful living room gives buyers a great first impression. One way to save is to have a couple of rooms staged professionally and tidy up the others yourself.
Another way to save money on staging is by paying them out of closing costs. Some professional stagers allow you to wait to pay what you owe until the home has been sold. If that is not possible, a soft staging saves money when traditional staging is too expensive. This means hiring a home stager only for the consultation and taking care of the other tasks yourself. A final option is to choose a realtor who offers staging as a complementary part of their services. Any of these methods bring down costs while ensuring your home looks great for potential buyers.
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
A home stager may recommend that one or more of the rooms in your home be painted to improve the appearance and make them more appealing to buyers. Hiring a painter costs around $49 per hour. Painting changes the mood of a home, creates a fresh look, and draws attention to focal areas in a home. Many buyers appreciate it since they do not want to move in and paint.
Another suggestion from home stagers is to add more lighting to certain rooms and areas to highlight the spaces and bring out the best in furnishings. Costs for this vary from $10 to $100. Lighting is highly important. If it is not updated, the home looks older or less perfect. The right lights make a space feel more modern, larger, and even more inviting to someone touring the home.
Another way to improve your home’s look, especially if you have an older kitchen, is refacing the cabinets. This costs $7,000 to $12,000, but it also increases the home value. The kitchen is one of the first places a buyer looks when choosing a house to buy. They want to see that it is clean, has plenty of space, and offers quality cabinets. By refacing your cabinets, they can be more visually appealing and offer a modern feel that buyers appreciate.
You might opt to bring in a house cleaner before selling your home, clearing away dust and marks. This improves the home’s appearance before taking photos and conducting tours. Deep cleaning costs $300 on average. The cleaner the home is, the more likely buyers are to be interested in it. Professional cleaning services remove dirt and debris while handling smudges on appliances, stains in carpets, and discoloring on surfaces. All of these things make a home more appealing to buyers.
When selling a home, you also need to consider hiring a moving service to transport all your furniture and other items to the new property or into storage. This costs between $4,000 and $8,600 when talking about long distance moving. When staging a home, extra items must be removed so buyers can focus on the basics. Cleaning up, decluttering, and moving items takes a lot of time and energy. A moving service can handle some of this work for you.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Tax deduction. The specifics of this vary from case to case, but many homeowners find that home staging costs are tax-deductible because they are classed as “advertising costs,” according to the IRS. However, if a home is staged but taken off the market, the costs are not tax-deductible
- Finding the right home stager. A good way to find home stagers is to ask friends or colleagues for referrals and speak with your broker to see if they have any go-to stagers to recommend. You can also find many reviews online on different rating sites to find top stagers. Before hiring, interview them, check their websites, and request photos of their past work to see if they are a good fit.
- Home universal appeal. In many cases, home stagers advise you to remove personal, political, religious, or unusual items and give the space universal appeal to buyers, allowing them to project themselves in the space.
- Outdoor staging. Do not forget the importance of curb appeal when trying to sell your home. To encourage people through the door to see the stager’s work, the outside of your home needs to look nice too. So, mow the lawn and tidy the yard.
- Storage unit. If you own lots of furniture, it might be wise to hire a storage unit to store excess items, freeing up space for the stager to work. Expect costs of around $100 per month for a simple 10’ x 20’ unit
- Does staging help sell a house?
Staging is an excellent way to ensure a home sells. On top of that, it can make the home sell faster and for a higher price. Staged homes sell for an average of 17% more and, in 87% of cases, will sell faster than a home that has not been staged.
- How much does it cost to stage a house with furniture?
This depends on the level of staging required. Prices vary from $1,000 to $5,000 or more, depending on the project’s size and scope.
- How much does it cost to rent furniture for a month?
This varies based on the amount and type of furniture, from as low as $50 for simple office equipment up to $750 for beds and tables.
- How much does it cost to stage a 3-bedroom house?
Average costs for staging a 3-bedroom house range from $1,500 to $2,500.
- How much do home stagers charge?
This depends on the level of staging required. A simple consultation can be $200, but full-service staging goes up to $5,000.
- Who pays for staging a house for sale?
There are various possibilities. Sometimes, the seller pays for staging, but there are cases when your real estate agent may cover some of the costs. Many realtors today pay for a consultation, but others also pay for part or all of the staging services.