Home Selling 101: The Art of Home Staging

Home Selling 101: The Art of Home Staging

When you are preparing to sell a home, condo or co-op in New York, it’s important to take all the right steps in order to maximize your returns and sell the property quickly. In our “Home Selling 101” blog series, we are going to highlight some key home selling strategies that you can use.

In this first article, we want to talk about the art of home staging. When done right, home staging can really make a significant difference in how potential buyers see the property. Whether we bring in new furniture or rearrange the owner’s existing décor, our goal is to make the home both aesthetically pleasing and inviting to anyone who enters it.

This is the perfect time to address home staging because many homeowners will be looking to list their properties at the beginning of the year. It’s a great time to put your home on the market and you’ll want to start planning as soon as possible. Having a solid plan for staging is definitely a smart idea.

Here are some of our best home staging tips for New York City home sellers:

1. Remember Who Your Buyers Are

You never know exactly who is going to end up buying your home. One key to effective staging is to make it look very appealing without injecting too much of your personal style. The idea is for a buyer to come in and imagine themselves living there with their own furniture and style. If it feels too much like yours, it’s harder for them to imagine it as theirs.

“Staging is just a matter of defining spaces so someone can walk in and envision their lives in a space,” says Tom.

2. Make it Glamorous

When it comes to tip #1, it is important to remember that New York’s luxury real estate market is very different than most other markets. When you are selling a multi-million dollar listing in Midtown’s Billionaire’s Row, for instance, you are going to have a general idea of the types of buyers you will need to attract. You want to make the home look distinctive and luxurious, while still having a somewhat neutral style that won’t turn anyone off too much.

“We put the pieces together in order to give potential buyers an idea of how glamorous it could be to live here,” says Mickey.

3. Clutter is Not Your Friend

One of the first rules of staging is to minimize clutter. This is truer than ever when it comes to New York City real estate where closet space is notoriously tight. You can certainly add some unique touches that people will remember. In general, however, you want to keep the space clean and inviting. If there is too much clutter or over-the-top features, it will be overwhelming to potential buyers. Again, it goes back to helping someone imagine living there. Let them fill in some of the blanks using their own imaginations.

4. Budget Accordingly

Home staging is one of those practices that falls under the classic adage of “you have to spend money to make money.” Just like marketing a home for sale, investing the time and money to properly stage a home should be worth it in the long run if it helps sell the property quicker and at a higher asking price. Most staging projects come together within a few weeks. Some take a little longer depending on the extent of the work that needs to be done. We’ve had some high-end sellers who have spent upwards of six figures on the staging because they knew how much of a difference it would make when the listing hit the market.

5. Get Professional Staging Help

Staging is very different than interior design and it pays to hire a professional stager. Staging is an important part of our business. It’s one of the things that has helped set us—and our home listings—apart in Manhattan’s luxury real estate market. To see a walkthrough of one of our home staging projects, check out this article from Business Insider.


Tom Postilio & Mickey Conlon are leading real estate brokers in New York City, responsible for more than $2 billion in residential sales. To learn more about their staging services or to schedule a no-obligation home listing consultation, contact them today.