“How much do home stagers make?” is one of the top questions for anyone who is thinking about becoming a home stager.
It’s only natural – everyone wonders what they might make when they start a new career. We sure did!
While we would love to finish this article off with one simple line saying something like “Home stagers make on average $105,000 per year”,but it’s really not that simple!
There are so many factors that affect the average home stager’s salary that we can’t just give you a simple answer. Your experience plays a huge role in how much you can earn, as does where you are located geographically. Similarly, your reputation also plays a role in being able to charge premium rates.
Let’s take a minute to look at what affects a home stager’s income, and how you can grow your home staging salary over time.
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Then, we’ll try to answer the question “how much do home stagers make?” by looking at data from real home staging job ads.
- What influences your income as a home stager?
- How much do home stagers make?
- How much do home stagers make per hour?
- How can you earn more as a home stager?
- Ready to get started?
What influences your income as a home stager?
Earning factor #1: Your role within the industry
As we explained in our home staging careers blog post recently, there is a range of careers within the home staging industry.
Alternatively, you can start a home staging business. In this case, you most likely won’t pay yourself a fixed salary – you’ll take a share of the profits as drawings.
Earning factor #2: The area you are going business
The average home stager salary is heavily dependent on where you are operating geographically – much like a realtor’s salary.
Home stages styling $10 million dollar homes for sale in Los Angeles are going to need to be at the top of their game and present absolute perfection to their clients. Contrastingly, homes for sale for $75,000 somewhere like Niagara Falls are going to be able to demand much less.
In saying that, the cost of living in each area is wildly different. To live in Los Angeles costs a lot more than somewhere like Niagara Falls – so don’t be too disheartened if you’re working primarily at the cheaper end of the market.
Earning factor #3: Competition
In all industries, competition generally drives down prices. If you are the only home stager serving your area then you can demand higher prices. However, if there are 4 home stagers all competing to win jobs, then the downward pressure on the prices you can charge will affect the average salary for home stagers in the area.
Earning factor #4: Your skill level & reputation
Your real estate staging salary is also heavily dependent on your skill level, experience, and reputation – just like in any other industry.
This is especially the case if you are actually doing the hands-on staging of properties. Other roles, such as a warehouse manager, driver, or admin assistant aren’t so driven by industry experience.
Earning factor #5: Whether you own the home staging business, or are an employee
If you are starting a home staging business, you can earn more long-term (but more than likely less short-term!)
Earning factor #6: What you charge
We need to put these rates into perspective if you are looking into doing home staging full-time.
If you decide to charge say $32 per hour and did three two-hour home staging consultations each week, you’d be earning $192 per week (or about $768 per month). That’s unlikely enough to be able to cover all your living costs, and you’d be better off getting a full-time job working elsewhere.
The caveat to this is of course if you are considering home staging as a side gig, and in that case, adding an extra $192 to your income each week might be a good option if you could complete the consultations on weekends and after-hours.
You also need to keep in mind that when you run your own home staging business, you’ll be doing lots of work that you don’t actually get paid for. Creating your website, maintaining your portfolio, answering email inquiries, booking appointments, driving to site visits….the list of unpaid work adds up quickly!
So we need to charge more!
Now you see the importance of increasing your rates. If you instead charged $320 for those two-hour consultations, you’ll be doing the same amount of work, but making $960 per week, or approximately $3850 monthly. This is a significant increase, and puts your annual earnings at about $46,000! Now we are talking!
Remember, this is just for the consultation and advice side of things. If you can bring in some actual hands-on staging work during this time, that is all additional income on top. A quick $1,000 staging job per month bumps your annual income up to $58,000.
What did we learn?
If you are interested in home staging as a side income, and to cover the cost of your morning coffee, a bit of petrol money, and an occasional nice dinner out, then you can charge $30 to $35 per hour.
BUT….if you are wanting to start a successful home staging business then you need to increase your rates significantly. Don’t go below $150 for a two-hour consultation, and understand your local area to better understand how high you can push this rate.
How much do home stagers make?
The average home staging salary is $51,000 per year.
Remember that an average home staging salary is exactly that – an average. This means that some are earning $35,000 – and others are closer to $100,000. It all depends on the factors above.
Also, keep in mind that the jobs listed below are for employees of home staging businesses. You can significantly increase your income as a home stager by starting your own home staging business or becoming a more senior home stager via a home staging certification course.
|Atlanta, GA||Junior Designer||$25 – $30 an hour|
|Madison Heights, MI||Staging Assistant||$14 – $16 an hour|
|Brookline, MA||Home Staging Assistant||$15 – $20 an hour|
|Renton, WA||Home Staging Furniture Mover||$20 – $23 an hour|
|Seattle, WA||Home Staging Intern||$15 – $26 an hour|
|Port Washington, WI||Warehouse Support||$16 an hour|
|Richmond, VA||Home Stager||$15 an hour|
|Wilsonville, OR||Senior Staging Stylist||$20 – $25 an hour|
|Los Angeles, CA||Senior Home Stager||$20 – $25 an hour|
|Los Angeles, CA||Sales Representative||$38,045 – $156,730 a year*|
|Norfolk, MA||Home Stylist||$20 – $30 an hour|
|San Francisco, CA||Warehouse Organizer / Driver||$18 – $24 an hour|
|Los Angeles, CA||Home Stager||Up to $60 an hour|
|El Monte, CA||Home Staging Assistant||From $13 an hour|
|New York, NY||Home Stylist / Design Consultant||$20 – $30 an hour|
|San Francisco, CA||Home Staging Administrative Assistant||$17 – $20 an hour|
|Union City, CA||Home Stager / Stylist||$33.65 – $45 an hour|
How much do home stagers make per hour?
Home stagers make on average $25 per hour. This is based on the average salary we saw above of $51,000, and a 40-hour work week.
A typically two-hour home staging consultation should cost between $200 and $800. This means your hourly rate for consultations is $100 – $400, which sounds impressive, but you also need to account for your time spent travelling to and from the client’s home, and also the time after the site visit to prepare the report.
How can you earn more as a home stager?
Having a thorough understanding of how to charge for home staging better equips you to earn top-dollar.
There are a number of things you can do to ensure your rates stay high and profitable:
- Ensure your website is beautiful and reflects your brand.
- Keep your online portfolio up to date and show off your best work. If you are yet to have a portfolio, take some before and after shots around your own house, or friends and family members’ houses.
- Take a home staging certification course online, to show that you have completed some sort of training in this area and are a trusted professional.
- Seek out larger jobs to boost your rates. Bigger houses, in affluent areas, can demand twice the rates of small units.
- Ask for written testimonials from all customers, and use these on your website and on your social media profiles to build trust in your name and your brand.
Ready to get started?
Online home staging courses can be completed in as little as two weeks and will get you off on the right foot towards starting your own home staging business.
Once you have your certification, take a look at our guide on how to write a home staging resume.