In my mind home staging is rarely defined and never fully represented. My first lesson in becoming a professional stager was that, in general, the public confuses staging with interior decorating. Home staging is the act of preparing a home for sale. The services are used to highlight features of the home that are strong selling points, while downplaying or showing less desirable features in a new, re-purposed or creative way. A good stager works to depersonalize the home so that prospective buyers can see themselves living there.
On the other hand interior decorating (and this is often confused with interior design, but that’s another post) utilizes color, patterns, lighting, furniture and accessories to reflect a homeowners personality, lifestyle or vision. The goal is to personalize the space or home based on what the owner likes.
My second and more important lesson, which is heard often throughout the profession is “living in your home is different than selling your home.” This is generally the opening line when a realtor has teamed with a stager to explain and sell staging services to someone about to put their home on the market.
I have to admit that line has always bothered me. If someone sees the benefit in staging a home to sell it, why don’t they see the benefit in staging to fully utilize and enjoy the home they have or are about to acquire? I believe this is where staging and interior decorating collide. After all, creating a functional space you can retreat to, that meets your needs and provides comfort, while surrounding you with the things you love, is kinda the definition of “home”. To obtain that, one only needs to extend staging to reflect your personality, which is easily accomplished by bringing your favorite things back into every room.
So, you have moved and unpacked. It’s over. You’re happy and all in all… it was a piece of cake. Now you face the overwhelming task of figuring out how and where to position your things in a new space that’s configured differently than your old one. A stager can help.
A stager can help you see that the bench you’ve always had at the foot of your bed, really doesn’t fit well in your new and smaller bedroom, but does provide that extra seating you wanted in the family room. You know those mirrors you had in the hallway at your old place? You could hang them on the wall opposite the windows in your new kitchen. Hanging them there will provide a flood of natural light you can enjoy with your morning coffee.
This is what a stager does, and more… kinda like having ice cream with your piece of cake.