What to Look for in a Home Stager: Evaluate Potential Home Staging Professionals to Ensure a Good Match

So you want to increase the selling price of your home while securing a quick sale. Hiring a professional home stager is the easiest way to do just that, here’s how:

Hiring a professional home stager is the easiest way to increase the selling price of your home and garner a quick home sale, if you have the funds available.

Once you’ve decided to move ahead with a professional, how do you decide which home stager is right for you?

There are a number of factors which can influence your decision. Here are some of the key considerations when deciding on the right home stager for you:

Home Stager Evaluation: Budget

To a large extent, your budget will dictate which home stager is right for you. Some staging companies cater to small budgets, while others focus exclusively on high-end, big-budget transformations. Look for a home stager that caters to your price range.

Type of Residence

Look for a home stager that has experience staging your type of residence. A trailer, for example, is going to have very different home staging needs than a high-end mansion. Condos and townhouses also have unique staging needs, compared to single-family detached homes.

Neighbourhood

The demographics of your neighbourhood affect what type of home stager will be most effective: Is your neighbourhood mainly comprised of families, Young busy professionals, or Students? Again, look for a home staging company that has worked extensively with the particular demographics of your neighbourhood.

Past Work

Any staging company worth their salt will have a portfolio of “before and after” photos of their past work. Look at the photos critically, to make sure they have achieved their objective; showing off the home’s best features. Do the photos make you want to rush out and buy the place, or elicit an emotional response? This is also a great way to assess their “staging style.”

Testimonials

Looking at testimonials received from satisified, or dissatisified, customers; is one of the best ways to assess a home stager’s ability, and dedication to customer service. Look for testimonials that give results-oriented feedback, rather than general “wow” statements. E.g. “Before we hired the ‘X,Y,Z Staging Company,’ our home sat on the market for two months without a single offer. After staging we received full price in just 10 days.”

Industry Certifications

Staging is a relatively young industry, but there are some widely recognised industry standards. Accredited Staging Professionals (ASPs) have trained according to the guidelines set out by the International Association of Home Staging Professionals – the only staging organisation affiliated with Real Estate rather than interior design. Although accredition is not mandatory to provide staging services, it does indicate a home stager has had formal training.

Complaints Policy

Chances are if you’ve followed the above steps when selecting a staging company, you will be satisfied with the end results, but what if you (or your real estate agent) don’t agree with the staging that’s been done?

Find out how your prospective home stager has dealt with this type of situation in the past: Perhaps after a certain number of showings without an offer, they’ll be willing to change things around free of charge. Whatever their policy, find out in advance!

Once you’ve found a home stager you think will work for you, hire them for a home staging services consultation first. Then you can get a feel for the person you will be working with and whether they’ll be a good match, without making a huge financial commitment.

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