How To Stage A Home – A Guide For Cheapskates

Here we are at the point of staging… do we do it or not? Does it all really matter like the realtors want you to believe? Well, I can see how it matters since it really is hard for the average home buyer to visualize their own furniture in a particular space. Having the furniture there helps with that. So I’ve decided that it matters and told the agency we’d go for it. The closer and closer we got to picture day, the more I began to think about it. WHY does staging cost so much (up to 10K or more) and just what is it that they do that I can’t do? Yep. I’m a cheapskate. I don’t think I could spend that much on furniture that I don’t get to keep!

So here’s what I did:

  1. I called the realtors back and told them to tell the professional stagers to take a hike
  2. I cleaned up our (huge) sectional and coffee table and left them in the family room
  3. I bought two, super cheap bookshelves at Kmart and dressed them with our own books and decor
  4. I left our beds and bedding, and one dresser per bedroom
  5. I took down family pictures and inserted basic photos of scenery
  6. I painted an accent color on one wall in the family room and carried it into the living room
  7. I left our food in the pantry (just neatened things up a bit)
  8. I bought several pillows and plants and stuff to make things look nice
  9. And then I did the single most brilliant thing since deciding to sell in the first place – I WENT TO RENT-A-CENTER

For $40 a week I rented an entire living room set. For another $40 a week I rented a dining room set. Throw in an entertainment console and an extra recliner and look out! You have one huge savings, right? They deliver and pick up and so my job is done. I even have plenty left over to buy throw rugs, an entire table setting, and a couple of outdoor chairs (at Kmart of course). Again, why does staging cost so much?

(more pictures)