I’m often asked the difference between Interior Redesign and Home Staging, whether a person should do both, which should be more expensive, and whether the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program covers both of these fields.
The difference between home staging and interior redesign:
Both services use many of the same skills, except in home staging you are “decorating to sell” and in interior redesign you are “decorating to live.” This is a subtle but important distinction.
If you are decorating a home to sell, you need to consider what potential buyers will be looking for and how to create an environment that the target market for the property will fall in love with.
Factors like these become very important:
- ensuring rooms have a very open and uncrowded feeling
- minimizing distractions
- setting up vignettes to romance buyers
- repairs and cleaning
- repainting to appeal to buyers
- pruning and organizing contents of closets to show ample space to buyers
If you are decorating a home to live, your most important consideration is what will make the homeowner feel comfortable and happy.
Considerations like these become very important:
- understanding how family members want to use each room
- deciding where to place furniture to meet the needs of the family
- pulling the decor together with special attention to the client’s tastes
- finding a way to display their “treasures”
- determining what colors will appeal to the family and carrying those through accessories and wall color
- creating the mood the client is looking for
- organizing built in cabinets and closets to accommodate what they have
What you’re actually doing (as a home stager or interior redesigner) may be exactly the same, you’re just doing it to please a different audience. Since your actual activities are the same (rearranging or bringing in new furniture, choosing colors, finding a way to make each room look and function better, etc.), why wouldn’t you offer your services to both audiences- home sellers and home owners?
If you’re a home stager, you can also be an interior redesigner and a color consultant.
These three services go together perfectly and broaden your potential market. Don’t feel you have to pick just one to build a business around! By using “home staging” as your lead service (the one you talk about most), you’ll attract lots of clients who aren’t moving too.
Many people will contact a “home stager” before calling a “decorator” because they understand that a stager will mostly work with what they already have, rather than recommending all new furnishings. For that reason, I get calls all the time from people who say, “I’m not moving now or in the foreseeable future, but I realize you can probably help me enjoy my home more right now.”
Since public perception is that a “decorator” or “interior designer” is for the wealthy, you have a much larger potential market for your business (especially in this economy!) by focusing your marketing more on staging than decorating. It doesn’t mean you turn your back on these other services, it’s all about how much emphasis you put on different ones.
Plus, many of your home staging clients (who never would have imagined themselves working with a “decorator”) will be so amazed at the transformation you can make to the home they are selling they will also want you to decorate the one they are moving into. I often help my clients figure out which furniture to take to the new house, tell them where it should go, pick new paint colors and accessories for the new house, etc.
By the way, as a creative person I like interior redesign way less than staging because when I’m staging my clients give me full creative control. When I’m decorating for them to live, I have to focus on their tastes and preferences. I use the same pricing strategy whether I’m decorating a house to sell or decorating a house for someone to live in.
In both cases, my clients are benefiting from my skill and in both cases I’m charging for my expertise and my time. Why would either service be less, or more, expensive?
I discuss pricing strategies in detail in course 2 of the Staging Diva Training Program. Throughout the whole program, what you learn applies to whether you’re offering staging, interior redesign, color consulting services, or all three!
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Debra Gould, President Six Elements Inc.
Creator of The Staging Diva® Home Staging Training Program
Debra Gould’s mission is to inspire others to follow their dreams and use their innate talents to also earn a living. She has trained over 1000 women and men on five continents how to take their talent for decorating and turn it into a successful home staging business. Learn more about the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program.