If you would like to become a professional home stager and you’re wondering what it takes to do so, you’ve come to the right place. This article explains how to become a certified staging expert, plus a lot more.
Home staging has become incredibly popular over the last few years. This is largely the result of new TV shows such as The Stagers on HGTV. In truth, the concept of staging has been around for a long time. It’s just enjoying the newfound popularity that comes from being a household word.
As a result of this growing popularity, many people want to know how to become a home stager and run a successful staging business. And that’s exactly what we are going to talk about in this article. So let’s start at the beginning, with a basic job description.
What Does a Home Stager Do?
A stager helps people sell their houses by presenting the home in the best way possible. The ultimate goal is to sell the property as quickly as possible, and for the best possible price. The home stager accomplishes this through a wide variety of techniques — painting, furniture removal and/or rearrangement, minor repairs, updating fixtures, and improving the curb appeal.
In short, a professional stager does everything possible to ensure the home makes a good first impression with buyers. Of course, there are certain limitations in terms of budget and time frame. But within those parameters, the home stager does everything possible to motivate buyers toward making an offer.
How Do I Become a Professional Stager?
Unlike other industries such as real estate and law, there is no licensing requirement for staging professionals. A real estate agent must be licensed by the state in which they work. But anyone can claim to be a home stager and set up shop.
With that being said, if you are serious about running a staging business, you should get certified through one of the major training programs. This will set you apart from competitors, encourage trust, and help you accomplish your mission. In other words, training and certification is a necessary step if you want to become a successful home stager today.
In fact, until you’ve completed the training necessary to become a certified staging professional, I wouldn’t recommend promoting yourself. The best path to becoming a successful stager is the following:
- Take the courses needed to learn this skill.
- Obtain your certification from a major organization.
- Get a few projects under your belt (even if it’s for friends / family).
- Set up your business website with before-and-after photo.
- And then start promoting your business.
If you follow these steps, you’ll have a much easier time getting your business up and running. So we have talked about the training needed to become a certified home stager (and I’ve provided some links above to get you started). Now let’s move on to the topic of marketing.
How Do I Launch My Staging Business?
The first thing you need is a well-designed website to showcase your skills, your credentials, and little bit about you as a person. It’s also a good idea to have a collection or “gallery” of before-and-after photos, showing some of staging projects you’ve done in the past. If you haven’t completed any projects for clients yet, see if you can do some work for a friend or a family member (even if they’re not selling the home).
Over time, you’ll have more project summaries to share on your website. The more pictures and stories you can share, the better. You can present this information in case study format, where you explain the homeowner’s challenge, what you did do help them, and what the end result was (e.g. the home finally sold).
But having a website is not enough. Once you’ve established your business, you need to be proactive about promoting it. There are many marketing strategies you can use, and it all starts with the audience you are trying to reach. Here’s the good news. You can purchase mailings lists of homeowners who have listed their homes for sale in your area. This is one way to promote your home staging business, by sending a letter or postcard to these folks.
You can also make your website highly visible to search engines like Google, Yahoo and MSN. This is another great way to get business. For example, if I wanted to become a home stager in the Austin, Texas area, I would work hard to get my website near the top of Google for “Austin home stager” and similar phrases. This is practice is referred to as search engine optimization, and you can find plenty of information about it online.
Word-of-mouth referrals are also a good source of business for home stagers, and it’s another reason to take great care of your staging clients. If you stage homes well and help people get their homes sold, they’ll tell people all about it. I can guarantee you that much.
What to Do Next
Now you know how to become a professional home stager and launch your business. So what next? For starters, you should get yourself enrolled into a staging course so you can get certified. You are not required to undergo this kind of training to become a home stager, but it’s the right thing to do if you’re serious about it.
Completing a professional training course will help you in many ways. Most importantly, it will teach you the skills you need to succeed as a home staging professional, and it will also help you position yourself as an authority. Good luck!