Staging and Design: There's a Difference?

There's a Difference?

In conversations, I often get a confused look when I talk about home staging and design as two different things.  They both involve choosing paint colors, finishes, furniture, and accessories, so is there really a difference?

Yes.  An important one.

Alisa (9).jpg

I love my home.  It is (mostly) designed just the way I want but if I were to sell in a month, I would stage it first.  Although I love each detail, some of my choices are taste specific.  And although I don't mind living with some of its "age-spots" I know that I can generate a lot more interest and sell for more if I update the light fixtures first.  

Staging is For Them

Linden Creek Home Staging

Linden Creek Home Staging

Simply put, home staging is a marketing tool.  The objective is too get as much as attention as possible from your targeted buyers, then to hook them by generating emotional buy-in. 

Colors, design styles, and furniture choices are all customized to attract the target demographic.  As the homeowner, you don't have to love the specific staging style but if it is generating interest then it is doing its job.  

Design is For You

Nate Berkus says it perfectly, "Your home should tell the story of who you are, and be a collection of what you love brought together under one roof." 

Do you like vibrant colors?  Then embrace them!  Have a collection of items from your travels?  Show them off!  Don't be afraid of what is or is not on-trend.  In design, a home should be an expression of you and an oasis to rest your head each night.

The Homeowner Disadvantage

Whether you are planning to list and need to stage your home or are settling into a new space and want to make it yours, being the homeowner often puts you at the greatest disadvantage. 


Somehow living in a space day-to-day makes it easy to overlook opportunities that someone with fresh eyes will catch.  As homeowners, we see a living room floor and remember where our child took their first steps and forget the carpet is the same blue carpet you swore you would replace when you moved in.  We see memories.  Others see a house.

If you are thinking about a staging or design project I encourage to ask an unbiased person for their thoughts on your home.  It's amazing how differently you see your home through their eyes.  You never know what you'll discover!

Make life more beautiful.