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— by Hana LaRock

7 Ways to Stage a Home Without Spending a Fortune

A huge part of any showing is the staging. This is because people may have a hard time seeing themselves living in a home unless it looks live-able. And, not just live-able, but nice. While it may seem like a waste of money to some agents (some buyers aren’t paying too much attention if it’s not their dream home), true professionals know how important is to invest in the materials needed for staging alone. When staging is done right, it can have so much power in influencing your potential buyers to put in an offer as soon as possible. That being said, this investment doesn’t necessarily need to cost you a lot of money, either. 

Here’s how to save money on staging: 

1) Try Virtual Staging

Virtual staging, though certainly not free, can save you a lot of money long-term if you use it frequently. The nice thing about virtual staging is that you can really customize it to each person’s liking, whereas with physical staging, you’re limited as to what materials you can afford. Virtual staging can also help bring more interested buyers to the property by adding the photos of your virtual stage to the listing. (Just make sure to inform those looking which photos have been virtually staged!)  

2) Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Buying a decorative pillow alone can cost $20, but not if you get it at a second-hand store. Thrift stores, Goodwill, re-salvaged wood shops, even your mom’s basement, all provide affordable alternatives to getting the staging material you need. It can even help give the house a more authentic, cozier feel. Just make sure there aren’t stains or dust on whatever items you buy. 

3) Utilize a Shared Economy

Do you have a lot of agents working for/with your team? Then, you can all get together and chip in some money for staging materials. Create a space or rent a storage room where everyone can take what they need, when they need it. This works best if you create some kind of list so that no one wants to borrow the same item at the same time.  

4) Keep It to Target and Walmart

If you’re not having any luck at the thrift store or with borrowing from others, then you may have to buy your staging materials brand new. But, that’s okay. There are plenty of affordable stores, like Target and Walmart, or Tuesday Morning or BigLots!, that always have sales in addition to low prices. Check the clearance rack and scan the circular for deals or coupons that can save you even more. Save the receipts and return things you don’t end up using or only use once, as long as it’s not damaged.  

5) Shop Online

Shopping for staging materials can be a bit overwhelming. Between finding the right stuff, adding up the cost, and making sure it’ll all actually look good in the home you’re showing, there’s only so much an agent can take on in a day. But, shopping online can make it way easier to visualize all of your purchases, while also saving you money. Check out the online stores of places like HomeGoods or Bed,  Bath, and Beyond to see if they have online-only deals. Or, head directly to websites like Amazon or Wayfair to get cheap deals sent right to your door.  

6) Rent Furniture

If you’re an agent that normally works with investors, then it’s likely you’re not spending a lot of time or money on staging. But, once in a while, you may get your hands on an attractive listing or a home you decide to flip yourself, in which case, you would need some solid staging materials in order to eventually get a decent ROI. Luckily, there are tons of places where you can rent furniture and other decorative pieces – such as in-lease.com – for a much cheaper price than buying it just for rare use.  

7) Hire a Staging Professional

Last but not least, if you’re someone who needs to stage homes often, then you should consider hiring a staging professional. This person will already have all the materials necessary, so you’ll just pay them for their time and they’ll take care of the rest. 

Do you have any other tips on how to save money on staging? Let us know in the comments below! 

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