If you’ve ever seen one those staging shows on HGTV you might be under the impression that unless you store all your stuff, renovate your kitchen and bath, bring in a truckload of rental furniture – all in time for the agent’s open house your home can’t be effectively staged. As with most reality shows not everything is as it appears. Those shows are all about ratings folks. If there wasn’t a time crunch, unrealistic budget and some frustrating dilemma who’d watch? Some of us live in the world of small budgets and busy families. It’s unrealistic to expect a family to present their listing in a perfect un lived-in state at all times.

The reality is that no matter what your budget or situation your home can be effectively staged in a way that highlights it’s best selling features. Imagine that your oldest piece of clothing was all you had to wear to a job interview. Of course you would do your best to clean and press it, mend the hem, so it looked it’s absolute possible best. You do the best you can with what you’ve got available.

Effectively staging on a budget might include a fresh coat of paint, borrowing furniture from friend or family member if necessary, replacing some light bulbs, packing or discarding unwanted items, effectively re-arranging furniture and decor, applying a little elbow grease, making use of a rake, and an investment of time and effort. Chances are you could enlist the help of friends or family members at no cost. So where do you start? A 1-2 hour home staging assessment is an affordable way to determine a plan of action. An assessment will identify areas where improvements could be made, offer suggestions specific to your property to increase it’s appeal to a broad range of buyers. A home stager is focused on highlighting the selling features of your home. Decorating is not the main focus as one might believe. You’re selling your home not the furniture and decor after all. I must stress the importance of doing what you can before you call your agent and subsequently have those listing photos taken. Your photos may be the deciding factor in having a potential buyer actually visit your listing. If they don’t like what they see you won’t get them in the door. If you get them in the door and they can’t see the selling features they won’t remember your listing. A good thing to remember is to imagine what sorts of things your eye is drawn to while you are searching for your new home and use that same critical eye to evaluate your own listing.

Whether you choose to invest money, or just invest time and effort into the pre-sale preparation of your home, the starting point is always a staging assessment by a qualified staging professional.

Getting Connected


"I just wanted to write a note to let you know how thrilled we are with ‘Rediscover Your Home’. We’ve had 9 years of growth and accumulation since moving to our current home. The stuff we needed and used was all there, but in a format that no longer met our family’s needs. Helping sort and organize the rooms to functionally meet our current lifestyle was a great step forward, then identifying ‘memory items’, including photos and wall art that make it feel and look like home, pulled it all together. The boys (including Dad) are able to help run the day to day events, entertaining and sports – thanks to the organization making sense, and we are enjoying our family time way more as a result! Even my Father-in-law commented on the new room layouts and pictures on the walls! I will definitely be in contact when we need to update the space again! Thanks for making my ‘house of stuff’ a home again and workable for our family using items we liked and already owned! All the best."

~ Felicity G, Mississauga

CRD Association

Canadian Redesigners Association