Home sales can become a challenge, especially in a real estate market that is unsettled at best. Realtors and homeowners who want to maximize the attractive features of a property turn to home stagers, people who can make an assessment of a property and recommend changes in d cor, room layout and exterior details.
Some realtors do this work themselves and some realtors become home stagers. Most are self employed; most will consult on home alterations for showing purposes and then make those changes themselves, for a fee, if the owner prefers. They will also fill a vacant house with rented furniture in order to make it appealing to prospective buyers. Their work is called interior redesign.
It helps to know the real estate market when working with properties for sale, and many home stagers have passed one of the real estate exams. But the best education for this work is a degree in interior design, where great attention is given to the use of space and light. There are many organizations that offer seminars in interior redesign, some of which pass out certification documents to participants. There are no current licensing or certification requirements for the profession.
There are no official estimates on the number of interior redesign professionals working today, but consider the fact that there are over half a million real estate agents in the country. Some percentage of that number engage in staging properties on a regular basis.
Home staging should be a growth profession over the next several years as there is currently an enormous backlog of existing homes that owners wish to sell and cannot. Once the real estate market is thriving again, sales of existing properties will remain competitive with new homes on the market.
Most home staging professionals are self employed and charge for their services on a contract basis. A simple walkthrough on a small home may cost the homeowner $75, while the fee for redesigning and decorating may be up to $500. Any costs for furniture rental or labor goes to the homeowner as well. With a network of real estate agents for referrals, this profession is an excellent home-base business.