Everyone who is thinking about becoming a home stager, eventually starts wondering how much do home stagers make?
While we would love to finish this article off with a simple line saying something like $105,000 per year, it’s really not that simple! There are so many factors which affect the average salary for home stagers that we can’t just give you a simple answer.
We can, however, take a minute to look at what affects a home stagers income, and how you can grow your home staging salary over time.
What influences your income as a home stager?
Your role within the industry
As we explained in our home staging careers blog post recently, there are 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.
The area you are going business
The average house stager salary is heavily dependent on where you are operation geographically – much like a realtors salary.
Home stages styling $10million 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 in somewhere like Niagara Falls is 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.
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.
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.
Whether you own the home staging business, or are an employee
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 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.
So, how much do home stagers make?
Remember that an average real estate staging salary is exactly that – an average. This means that some are earning $35,000 – and others closer to $100,000. It all depends on the factors above.
|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 can you earn more as a home stager?
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.