Real Estate Staging / Home Staging Blog


UP STAGING the competition... 2 VERY different stagings on the same property

Realtors need to know that just because a person or business call themelves "stagers" does not mean that they can actually do a professional job. EVEN if they are "Accrediated". 

Here is an actual job we recently re-staged. The builder has paid an unbelievable $9,000 in fees to this furniture rental company! This type of "staging" is what I call... "plop and drop". 

This "accredited" company gave NO thought or effort as to HOW the few pieces of furniture they supplied should be placed in the home.

To make the home look waaaay more appealing. We came in and reset the space using the rental companies own furniture and then added an addtional 128 props from our own Prop Library... including a few additonal pieces of furniture.

My point is... if you are going to use a stager, get a GOOD stager. Afterall, in a slow saturated market which would and/or could you sell faster? If you would like to see more Before & After photos from this project... just let me know.

I always welcome ideas and suggestions... CRAIG

BEFORE "staged" by Company X. (Photos: left) & AFTER restaged by REAL ESTAGING (Photos: right)

ATTEMPTED home staging by a furniture rental companyRESTAGED By Real Estaging









ATTEMPTED home staging by a furniture rental companyUPSTAGED by Real Estaging









Before & After photos copy written by REAL ESTAGING. 2006 ALL Rights Reserved


Comment balloon 34 commentsCraig Schiller • July 29 2006 10:25AM


Interesting to see...a picture is worth a million used to be a thousand words know...Inflation!!!  LOL

Posted by Craig Schiller over 14 years ago


I'd be very interested to see the photos.  I don't know why they didn't show up the first time.  Try to upload them again.

Posted by Geri Sonkin, Long Island Real Estate & Staging Expert (Douglas Elliman Real Estate 516-457-7103) over 14 years ago
Photos are coming up broken links for me too.
Posted by Christina Ethridge (The North Idaho Dream Team powered by SKE Realty Group) over 14 years ago
hurry ta hell up ...will ya...LOL, just kidding...we are anxious to see...if nothing else you got our attention...LOL
Posted by Don Lantier, Broker/Owner of & HouseTour4 (Donald J Lantier Realty) over 14 years ago

i am interested in seeing these photos. I've never heard of "accedited" furniture rental :-) plop and drop is a goodpe you can get the pictures up soon.



Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) over 14 years ago

Thanks for "fixing" the photos. Thanks for the email letting me know they were up on the blog.

They were worth the wait!


Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) about 14 years ago
this is so amazingly cool. bravo!
Posted by Cindy Lin, Host, The Home Staging Show podcast (Staged4more School of Home Staging) about 14 years ago

The difference you made is so great.  I am equally impressed in your ability to win over a client after they already spent so much for such under-whelming results from the first staging co.  I am inspired!



Posted by Gina Dougherty, Home Staging Redondo Beach, CA- (Fusion Design Consulting) almost 14 years ago

So are you saying that staging job costs 9000? What did you charge to restage?

B.T.W. awsome job!

I'm curious, I have seen one of the pictures you have on your web site somewhere else. The one where the before pic is a t.v. and the after is a dining table and checked sofa. That's not a stock photo is it?

Posted by lisa over 13 years ago

forgive me, I did't mean to imply that it was not yours, just wanted to verify where it came from as I suspect the person who had it took it from you,

Posted by lisa over 13 years ago
Looks fantastic.... I like the "plop & drop" line... You've proven very well that there's more to staging than adding some furniture and decor!  Love all your pictures!
Posted by Judy Heinrich (Judy Heinrich Home Staging) over 13 years ago

LISA... If you know ANYTHING about me it is the fact that I shoot ALL my own photos. NOT a single stock photo EVER. PERIOD!

And YES you may have seen these pictures elsewhere. Like on my website. Anywhere else... well then they have be stolen so if you see it out there PLEASE let me know.

The rental company was charging the client $900 per month for a total of 10 months. Off the top of my head... our standard fees for the rental of the props and re-setting the space was about $2,000.

Posted by Craig Schiller over 13 years ago

What a great sample of good staging versus bad staging. Unfortunately what the furniture company did wasn't actually staging, but more furniture delivery!

At least the builder knows who to call first next time! 

Posted by Lucie Quigley (HOLT modern Home Staging) over 13 years ago

Gorgeous work, Craig.

Do you have flat screen TVs in your prop library? I had a call from someone who said a stager she uses has flat screen TVs in her inventory and now I see one in your "after" photos. I don't have a budget for electronics and wonder how prevalent the practice is.



Select Home Staging

Denver, Colorado 

Posted by Veronica Harbert, Select Home Staging (Select Home Staging) over 13 years ago

Absolutely BRILLIANT !!!!!!!!!

Now THAT is what you call Staging! The End.

Posted by Patricia Barta, Staging by Patricia, N. Virginia (Staging by Patricia) over 13 years ago

Craig - Excellent job!

This is a great example of how a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.  Too bad they didn't hire the ones who really knew what they were doing the first time.

Posted by Kimberly Wester over 13 years ago

Wow - awesome comparison, and informative about rental companies trying to "stage". It really is an excellent example of how staging is not just about the arrangement of furniture (especially ineffective arrangements) -- there are many different levels of creativity and marketing pulled together to create that "wow".

In speaking with a potential client this week, I was careful to point out that staging is not just about the furniture, it's about creating a purpose in a space that might not have been there before. Now, I know that this is not a profound statement coming from just me....but it's so important that home stagers not forget some of the reasons why clients may have objections about the "need" for a professional stager to do the staging.

Beautiful work -- and the difference is so much more apparent because you are so careful to show your Before and Afters from the same angle.  That is so powerful in helping to showcase the "wow" factor of your staging work (as you know!)


p.s. You may choose to watermark your photos to deter anyone from "lifting" do have beautiful pictures, and you need to protect the ownership of your creative work. I have thought of doing the same, once I get some quality pics under my belt. 

...And I do use some pics of my projects that were not taken by me, but are still my work - i.e. that the client has taken; and I will use them only after I have their permission -- in fact, I don't even put the "before/after" completion story up without their permission. I do not use "before" or "after" photos that were taken or paid for by a realtor, even though it is my work....unless I did this work for that realtor specifically, then I will ask their permission before I use them also.  (I think that I'm talking in circles now, so I'll just "submit" now.....speaking of which, what is a "persimmon????"....I did look it up, but I've never seen them at my grocery store..."a tree bearing red or orange plum-like fruit"...wouldn't that just be a plum tree?...but I digress...okay, "submitting" now)




Posted by Pamela Lachance (AKKiRA Realty Inc. Real Estate Brokerage) over 13 years ago
Fantastic illustration about those who can, and those who cannot...effectively stage a home.  What a difference!!  I would love to see more pics.
Posted by Home Staging over 13 years ago
You gotta know you're good when you can do a before/after of a staged home!  Great work!!!
Posted by Tina Parker, CNE, REDM, SRES, CSP Home Staging REALTOR, Halifax (Keller Williams Select Realty) over 13 years ago


As always, great work!!!  This is such a great example.  Do you mind if I print the original post and place this in a binder I bring to my marketing presentations?  It would be great to have this blog handy when someone asks me, "Why do you think I should use a stager?".  All clients to you of course as I am local!!!

Brian Ortiz

Posted by Brian Ortiz, Chicago Real Estate Broker (RE/MAX Vision 212) over 13 years ago

Thanks for sharing Master!  ;) Love what you did. 

Yes the ole' plop and drop......If only it could be that easy.  Not for us control freak stagers.

Posted by Janice Sutton, Home Stager - Temecula Murrieta (1st Stage Property Transformations ) over 13 years ago


You are just the best!  I love the room and you inspired me to keep at the staging game that I've just entered because you show there are phonies out there, even if they are accredited.  I would love to see the rest of the project photos.  Also I must commend you on an article you wrote a little while ago about teaching seniors about staging.  Mucho kudos!  I use House Sweet House, Welcome House, and House Is Where the Heart Is all the time since reading it.  Thanks for being you.  Pat 

Posted by Pat Ebrahimi over 13 years ago


I'm just now getting back to you about the stollen picture. I'm so sorry I asked if it was a stock photo, I was just shocked to see it and didn't think before I typed.

Another stager used it in a presentation and passed it off as her own.   I imagine she would defend herself saying that she didn't say "SHE' staged the room but was only using it as an example. Pretty sad.

Posted by lisa over 13 years ago

Wow, I'm impressed. What a huge difference. I also want to take this one step further to say that the picture/ photo quality is ESSENTIAL. It's a final touch to the very hardwork that was put into the property.

Craig: You always have great photo quality. Bravo!

Posted by Loreena and Michael Yeo, Real Estate Agents (3:16 team REALTY ~ Locally-owned Prosper TX Real Estate Co.) over 13 years ago
Just checking out old blogs - quite a difference between "staging" and "Real Estaging"
Posted by Kathleen Lordbock, Keller Williams Realty Professionals (Keller Williams Realty Professionals) over 13 years ago

Craig, I know this photos are a year old.... I was doing a little research on the web and ran across this blog. I was not part of AR then to comment... WOW!  I simply think this should be brought back up to view the differences.

I recently contacted an agent whose listing photos I had seen on MLS.  I offered my services and was advised that the home was staged PRIOR to listing.  This would mean that the photos were of a staged home, right?  I don't think so.  Your example shows the difference a real professional can make!

~Melissa Marro, - become a member today!

Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) over 13 years ago

Thanks Craig. You illustrate a point that we are finding too much of. There are those who are marketing themselves as Stagers, do the kind of job you show as the before pics and give us all a bad name.

Realtor and Home Seller perceptions of what Staging is becomes our reality. I make it a policy to over deliver on quality and customer service. With home staging still being fairly new in Colorado, it makes it difficult to re-educate clients who have had a bad experience or know someone who knows someone who has. A happy client may tell 10 people, an unhappy client will tell 100. Kudos to you for gaining the trust of a previously burned client and convincing them to allow you to show them what great staging really looks like. Thanks for keeping the bar high.

Posted by Trish Pachak, ASP Master - Denver, Colorado (We Stage Colorado- Colorado's Premier Staging Experts) over 13 years ago

Was the $9000 for the furniture...I think you said $900 for 10 months.  Did you send the furniture back, or did the owners continue paying the $900/month, plus your $2000?   How much would you have charged if you had provided all the furniture?  More than $900/month, less, about the same?  Just trying to compare apples to apples here....

Obviously, you did a much better job than the furniture company.  But most furniture rental companies in my area make no claims to be stagers.  They just deliver the furniture you order.  They charge for the rental of the furniture, but the placement is up to you.    .  

Posted by Gwen about 13 years ago

Craig - Spectacular work, as always. 


Posted by Jackie Peraza, Home Stager - Framingham, Massachusetts (Perceptions AdverStaging(TM), LLC) almost 13 years ago
Jackie found this blog but I hadn't seen it as I had not been on AR back when you first wrote it.  Craig you have always been a differentiator and this is no exception.  Calling to the attention of the world that there is a difference in staging has given AR and particularly Stage it Forward -- wings.  It is the same as with a Realtor, ask for references, examples of someone's work (making sure it actually is their work) and having the industry define staging will all help the consumer understand what is should be and judge the work.  Stagers are fast leaving the business and in some cases it is because they do not have what it takes.  The same happens in real estate, especially now.  The free enterprise system weeds out those that should find their bliss somewhere else.  Good work, and thank you for the blog.  We all needed to see this.
Posted by Terrylynn Fisher, HAFA Certified, EcoBroker, CRS, CSP Realtor, Etc. (Dudum Real Estate Group - almost 13 years ago

The industry is changing for the good....not only are some untalented leaving,

ETHICS cleansing is occuring.

Posted by Anonymous almost 13 years ago
I run into this all the time. I received a call last week from a new agent who received a very high quote from a local rental agency. I used the plop and drop scenario and gave them a much more in line price. We got the job and they loved it.  Great blog. Hope you don't mind if I use it.
Posted by Kym Hough, Staged to Sell East Bay - Danville, CA (www.Staged-to-Sell ) almost 13 years ago

Ethics cleansing is an interesting term, but perhaps it was needed anonymous...

Craig forgot to say the staging was awesome. 

Posted by Terrylynn Fisher, HAFA Certified, EcoBroker, CRS, CSP Realtor, Etc. (Dudum Real Estate Group - almost 13 years ago

Craig ~ What an amazing difference!  I love the phrase/term "plop and drop"...may I use it???

My partner and I just got a job to re-stage a $1,200,000.00 home in Ion (a subdivision in our area) and the prior staging job is literally indescribable.....Plop and Drop certainly fits the bill, along with "naked staging" or very Little furniture and accessories and NO wow factor.  Additionally, the scale and style of the furnishings used do not fit the house at all.  This is a beautiful home and the price is actually less than it should be. We are hoping to get this done quickly and get the agent updated pictures to use for this lovely property.



Posted by Tracy Moses~Redefining LUXE~Staging ~ Decorati (Redefining LUXE) almost 13 years ago