How Much Does it Cost to Stage a House?

Michael Yessis

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Michael Yessis

March 12th, 2021
Updated March 12th, 2021

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Home staging net return | Why home staging is effective | Home staging costs for common options | Other home staging costs | Determine your home staging costs | Virtual home staging cost

Home staging costs an average of $1,320, with the range for most stagings falling between $557 and $2,093.[1]

The staging costs for luxury homes and other houses with larger floor plans, however, can run up to $10,000.[2]

The cost of staging a house, as the numbers show, can be significant. But that's not the entire financial story. Sellers who stage their house to appear more attractive to potential buyers can also earn significant value in return.

» NEED AN AGENT TO HELP WITH STAGING? A top-rated realtor in your area can help.

Staged Home

Home staging often nets more money than it costs

Real estate trade groups generally agree that staging — decorating and arranging a house to optimize its appeal to potential buyers — positions a house to sell for more than its list price.

» READ MORE: How to Stage a House to Sell

The Real Estate Staging Association's 2020 survey found that 85% of staged homes sold 5% to 23% over list price.

That's real money. A 5% over list price sale on a $270,000 house — the approximate average U.S. home value[3] — means an extra $13,500. A 23% over list price sale on a $270,000 house equals $62,100.

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) 2019 Profile of Home Staging[4] broke their findings down in more detail.

  • 22% of sellers’ agents reported a 1% to 5% boost in buyers' offers.
  • 17% of sellers’ agents reported a 6% to 10% boost in buyers' offers.
  • 4% of sellers’ agents reported a 11% to 15% boost in buyers' offers.
  • 2% of sellers’ agents reported a 16% to 20% boost in buyers' offers.
  • 0% of agents reported a negative impact of staging on a home’s dollar value.

Note: Percentage boosts are in comparison to similar homes that weren't staged.

Why home staging is effective


83% of buyers' agents said buyers can better visualize a property as their future home when it's staged, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) 2019 Profile of Home Staging. The NAR profile also suggests staging can:

⬆️ Increase the number of offers a seller receives.
⬆️ Increase the dollar amount of those offers.
⬇️ Decrease the days the house sits on the market.

None of the returns noted by the National Association of Realtors and the Real Estate Staging Association surveys are guaranteed, but staging's track record suggests a real possibility of a net return.

That possibility just usually comes with very real upfront costs.

Home staging costs for common options

Important: Home stagers often require a three-month minimum staging contract, so costs can be multiples of what's listed below.

🏠 Home staging options

💰 Home staging costs

Home staging consultation
$150 to $600 for an initial two-hour consultation
Pay by the hour for home staging
$75 per hour, with a range from $25 to $150. Note: Hourly rates are less common than project rates.
Pay by percentage of house value
1% to 3% of the listing price for a vacant house
Pay by room
$400 to $700, one room per month
Pay for furniture rental
$500 to $600, one room per month
Pay to rearrange and declutter an occupied home
$800 flat rate
Source: HomeAdvisor


An experienced agent can help evaluate staging options and determine what kind of staging a house needs.

» NEED STAGING GUIDANCE? Connect with a top-rated realtor in your area.

Other potential home staging costs

Staging often involves considerations beyond selecting and/or placing furniture and accessories. Sellers may also want to consider:

Painting the house

Painting the interior of a home by a professional costs an average of $1,750, with a range of $380 to $800 for an average size room (10' x 12').[5]

Painting the exterior of a home costs an average of $2,800.

👉 Why do it? Certain paint colors are considered the best options to attract buyers.

» READ: Best Paint Colors to Sell a House

Lighting the house better

Installing a new lighting fixture costs an average of $519[6] while it costs an average of $360 to install a single recessed light. A room with six recessed lights can run $2,160.[7]

👉 Why do it? Great lighting illuminates and showcases the best aspects of a home.

» READ: Should You Upgrade Your Lighting Before Selling Your House?

Refinishing parts of the house

Refinishing cabinets costs around $2,859[8] while refinishing a home's hardwood floors runs an average of $1,752.[9]

👉 Why do it? Cosmetic repairs like sprucing up cabinets and flooring can help stop a house from feeling tired, which turns off some potential buyers.

» READ: Should You Replace Your Cabinets Before Selling Your Home?

Cleaning the house

A professional maid service costs an average of $168.[10]

👉 Why do it? A clean environment makes buyers feel welcome and that they'd be getting a well-maintained house.

An experienced agent can help determine which, if any, of these staging suggestions a house may need.

» FIND A GREAT REALTOR: Connect with a top-rated agent in your area.

How to determine home staging costs for a specific property

The precise cost to stage a unique individual home depends on multiple factors, including:

👉 The location of the house. Rates for professional home stagers vary by region and markets within a region.

👉 Whether the house is occupied. If it's not, a seller will likely rent furniture and pay movers. If it is occupied, a seller may use their own furniture and, therefore, have fewer expenses.

👉 How much staging the seller chooses. A seller can choose to stage their entire house or only specific rooms, which each can be done to varying degrees.

🏠 The most-often staged rooms

  • Living room (93%)
  • Master bedroom (78%)
  • Kitchen (84%)
  • Dining room (72%)

👉 The degree of an agent's involvement. Some sellers' agents include staging with their services or connect their clients with stagers. According to the National Association of Realtors:[11]

  • A seller's agent personally offers to stage a home 26% of the time.
  • A seller's agent offers an external home staging service to sellers 17% of the time.
  • A seller's agent will pay for staging 2% of the time.

» NEED AN EXPERIENCED AGENT TO GUIDE YOU THROUGH STAGING AND A SALE? Connect with a top-rated realtor in your area.

The cost of a virtual staging

A virtual staging, which involves adding images of furniture and decorations to the base image of an empty room or house, costs $40-80 per photo.

It's cheaper than a real staging, but there are downsides:

  • Not all Multiple Listing Services (MLS) — the databases of homes for sale used by real estate professionals and marketplaces — allow virtual staging.
  • Virtual stagers could potentially change the colors or alter the base images and not showcase the actual property.
  • Virtual stagings are for a home's online presence only. They won't work for buyers who want to see a property in person.

The market has recently seen an increase in buyers shopping only online. Still, a seller should keep in mind potential buyers who do visit in person.

» NEED AN AGENT? Connect with a top-rated realtor in your area.

Related reading

ARTICLE SOURCES
[1]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does it Cost to Stage a House?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[3]

Zillow. "United States Home Values." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[4]

National Association of Realtors. "2019 Profile of Home Staging." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[5]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does it Cost to Stage a House?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[6]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does It Cost To Install A Light Fixture?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[7]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does It Cost To Install Recessed Lighting?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[8]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does It Cost To Refinish Cabinets?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[9]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does It Cost To Refinish Hardwood Floors?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[10]

HomeAdvisor. "How Much Does A Maid Cost?." Accessed March 11, 2021.

[11]

National Association of Realtors. "2019 Profile of Home Staging." Accessed March 11, 2021.

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