How Much Do Home Stagers Make?Dec 07, 2020
Before you quit your day job and take the leap into your dream job as a home stager, you’ll probably wonder: how much do home stagers make? How much do home stagers charge for their services? What is the average salary for home stagers?
While it would be nice if we could spit out a number that you can expect for your staging salary, the answer to how much a stager makes is actually dependent on a myriad of factors.
The Location of Your Staging Business
Home staging fees vary significantly from one city to the next. Stagers in luxury markets can charge more for staging services than stagers who do low-end investor flips.
Competition in the market also plays a role in what you can expect to make as a home stager. If you are the only trained stager in town, you may be able to charge more, but you might also need to spend more time educating real estate agents on the need for staging homes.
Your Home Staging Skill Level
If you are considering a career in home staging and redesign, you’ve likely been told how beautiful your own home is and had friends ask you for your opinion on design.
But, to really make money as a home stager, you have to be seen as a true expert, not just someone with a good eye. You need to be able to speak the language of interior design and give the “why” behind your staging selections.
For example, anyone with a good eye can walk into a room and say, “that picture needs to be hung a little lower,” but a trained Staging Design Professional™ says, “the center of the picture needs to be 62” above the ground.”
See the difference? The first sounds like an opinion. The second sounds like the staging professional you would hire and trust. The quality of your staging education and training will be a major determinant of your success. Your certification as a Staging Design Professional™ is the foundation you need to build your home staging business.
Grit and Entrepreneurial Drive
The beauty of starting a home staging business is that you are your own boss! Of course, this also means that there is nobody pushing you and expecting you to get to work on time. The success of your home staging business requires self-motivation and a strong work ethic.
One of the primary factors in how much home stagers make is whether they are creating competitive staging bids. Charging too much for staging means getting fewer staging projects. Charging too little creates a staging business model that is not profitable and therefore unsustainable.
There is a science to charging the right amount for home staging. Staging Studio's Stager Pricing Lab has all the formulas and information you need to structure the optimal pricing model for your home staging business.
Pro Tip! Many new home stagers make the mistake of pricing their staging way too low because, as untrained amateurs, they don’t know their own worth. Certified home stagers have the confidence and skills to avoid that trap. Trained stagers make so much more money and build their staging businesses much faster.
For more on why you should NOT discount your home staging services, watch the 1 minute video below of our co-founder.
Relationships in the Real Estate Industry
You’ve heard the old adage, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Well, that's not entirely true, because what you know is extremely important in home staging. But networking in your city and building relationships with real estate agents/potential clients is huge. If you have even just one agent-friend that can help you get “in the door,” you will be that much closer to the staging income you want.
How much does the average home stager make? (Breaking down of the numbers)
The average salary for home stagers is $49,616, with some earning as much as $80,500 annually. The majority of lead stagers make over $20 an hour, while the majority of staging assistants make $10-$25 an hour, according to RESA's 2021 State of the Industry Report. If you are a staging warehouse manager, your average hourly pay rate likely falls between $15-$30, according to the same report.
It’s important to note, however, that these numbers only take into account the salaries of staging company employees, not the business owners themselves. The real wealth is in owning and operating a home staging business.
Many of these entrepreneurs generate more than a million dollars in annual revenue, and maintain a 20-30% profit margin. I’ll let you do the math on that! As you can see, it can add up to a great income.
The going rate for an initial staging consultation generally ranges from $150 - $600. Let’s say you charged $250 for your 2-hour staging consultation and were able to schedule 4 of those each week. That comes to $1000/week.
You probably want a couple of weeks vacation, so you plan to work 50 weeks in a year. $50,000 annually is a respectable amount. Now consider if you also did just one staging project each week at $1000. That could put you in the six-figure range.
Home staging is not a get-rich-quick scheme. It is a professional career. Like any small business, it will require an investment of time and resources to develop. It is probably not going to happen overnight – but it can be quite lucrative.
Home staging is a dream job.
There are many other rewards, beyond financial ones. It is impossible to put a value on the joy found in doing what you love. How much is flexibility worth to you? How much is it worth to you to be able to manage your own schedule and be your own boss? How amazing to spend your days decorating?!
We want a thriving and profitable home staging business for you – where you get to spend your days doing what you love.
Learn more about starting your own staging business.
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