How much do home stagers make?

Home staging can create a good income if you know what you are doing, and charge the right amount for your services. Let’s take a quick look at how much home stagers typically make, and how much you could expect to make if you start your own home staging business.

There is a lot involved in professional home staging, especially if you are providing the furniture and accessories over and above staging the house. If you are making near or just above minimum wage, then you need to take a good look at your processes and rates!

With house prices typically increasing each year, you need to keep in mind that some sellers will be making a profit of anywhere between $10,000 and $250,000 when they sell their house.

When you keep this in mind, employing the services of a home stager to help squeeze every last dollar out of the sale by making potential buyers fall in love in the house is well worth it.

Additionally, the knowledge of a professional home stager is also extremely valuable in that it can help sell a home quicker then if the house was either poorly staged, or not staged at all.

So now we’ve established just how valuable home staging can be for your customers, just how much should you be charging?

Depending on where you live, a typical two-hour home staging consultation from a certified home staged should cost in the range of $175 to $950. Yes, that is a big range, but bear with me!

If your services have been requested for a $2.5 million dollar, 5 bedroom, 2 lounge house in Los Angeles, then you can obviously expect to put in a lot of work and be held to high expectations. These customers expect the best, and rightly so. However, if you have been asked to stage a $65,000 1 bedroom flat for sale in Niagara, then the customers are understandably expecting to pay less.

So it is tough to give an EXACT figure for how much a home stager can make as it is so dependent on your location, but these ballparks will help give you an idea.

The $175 to $950 range given above is for a 2-hour consultation, and your position in this range depends on experience, the demand for your services, and the area you live in.

After your initial consultation, a professional home stager can then make at least $1,000 if they were to complete the home staging project and implement all the advice and recommendations they gave during their initial consultation.

Again, if you live in an area with high-value homes, and are asked to style a large home, then this figure can creep towards $5,000 or more.

Let’s look at annual incomes for home stagers…

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 which you don’t actually get paid for. Creating your website, maintaining your portfolio, answering email enquiries, 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.

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.
  • Get a home staging certification 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?! To learn how to become a certified home stager, click here. 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.

About The Author

Jackie Riley

The Home Staging Institute offers courses and products that help people set up and run successful home staging businesses. The Institute was set up in 2007 by successful home staging business owner Jackie Riley. Today, the institute has students in many countries around the world, including America, Canada, the U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Germany and France. Since 2007, thousands of people have graduated.

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