Staging your Home to Sell: Pro Tips From 5 Staging Experts

stage your home to sell by removing clutter
For a lot of people, moving means selling.

Selling your home is a tough process that takes a lot of effort and persistence; it can certainly be awfully stressful. One way to make it easier (and more profitable) is to stage your home to sell; studies have found that staging a home really helps raise its asking price and expedite its sale. So, what are the best tactics to consider for staging to sell? We talked to 5 Experts from the LA & NYC areas to learn more about the best ways to stage your home to sell.


Angela Kantarellis, NYC-based Certified Professional Organizer® and owner of AKorganizing.

Angela is a Certified Professional Organizer® and owner of AKorganizing, a NYC based company specializing in high-end residential organizing. She works extensively with clients who are in the process of moving helping them do the "pre-move purge" and the "unpack & set up" of their new home.


How to Stage your Home to Sell


  • Organized and clutter-free homes sell faster and at a higher price.

  • A clutter-free environment creates an inviting, open feel that will allow buyers to easily envision themselves in the space.

  • Decluttering is the first and most important step in staging your home for sale.

  • Well-staged homes sell 43 percent faster and for 6 percent more, according to Association of Property Scene Designers founder Karen Schaefer.  

  • According to, 95 percent of homes sell in 11 days or less when staged by a professional who has received their Accredited Staging Professional Master certification.

  • "Depersonalizing" a space is an essential - this involves removing personal photos and memorabilia that could distract buyers from imagining themselves in the space.

  • Make sure your closets, pantry and kitchen cabinets are organized and clutter-free and show beautifully - buyers will look inside!

  • Chaotic, disorganized closets and cabinets can turn buyers off. A professional organizer like AKorganizing will prevent that from happening.


Jo O’Key, Real Estate Agent at the O’Key Group in Los Angeles

Jo is the principal agent at the O’Key Group, who specializes in the Northeast LA and Silver Lake real estate market. She loves to bring homes to life for home buyers and sellers. Here are some of her techniques:


  • White walls and ceilings, nothing on counter tops. When you stage, you want to create a life for each room. You don't want to show them someone living there, and you aren't just putting a bed in there either. It's a subtle combination of what a fresh, clean magazine-ready home would look like.

  • Art work and frames should also light in color, and at the correct hanging height (google heights).

  • Bedding and furniture adds the splash of color. Colorful walls are very bold and the color is a big deal; consult with your realtor or stager before throwing a bright color on. The tone is a big deal. White is safe.

  • Rugs under beds are a lovely touch and bed side lamps are a must.

  • Clean the garage and yard. Make sure no cables, hoses or pet toys are laying around.

  • Lastly...take out or half your cupboards. Create the idea that there is too much space for you to fill. Don’t throw your belongings into closest thinking people won’t look - they will.


Brittny Cantor, Founder & CEO of MyGradPad, Licensed NYC Real Estate Broker

Brittny is the founder & CEO of MyGradPad, a service that helps recently graduated students find housing ideal for them in their unique situations. She tends to deal with many smaller units that offer their own staging challenges.


  • Staging smaller units offers brokers an opportunity to show what fits, and potential buyers to see the possibilities of the space.

  • Work within the realistic goals of the potential tenants in terms of furniture affordability and style. [No need for a bidet in an affordable unit.]

  • Bring a tape measure and scale out the room before making a plan on placing your items.

  • You can use the measures to map out the room to get the best idea on your best staging techniques.

  • Everyone has their own style. Depersonalize the space as much as possible to not cramp on anyone’s style.


Morgan Muldrew, Director of Staging at Interior Illusions

Morgan is the director of Staging at LA-based design firm Interior Illusions. She has a great eye for contemporary design and keeps busy as one of the top staging designers in West Hollywood.


  • The most important things to consider are the location of the home and the targeted buyer. The home should be in the styles that match those criteria.

  • “Iron chef” staging (having to find a place for an unusual item) can bring out unexpected and inspiring results.

  • When it comes to art pieces, “bigger is better”. Make sure the art on the walls is appropriately sized.

  • Take away all the accessories in the home - and then put back only the ones that you need.

  • Have a vision - understand what works with the space you’re given and turn it into something. Go with your instincts.

  • Home buyers want to see your space maximized - make it look as big and open as possible.

  • If the home has a unique space, try to remove all doubts that the space can be used practically.

  • Staging sells a lifestyle. What are you selling with your design?

  • Be deliberate with your selection of furniture and its placement.


Susan LeFevre, Licensed Real Estate Associate Broker for the Wilkinson LeFevre Team at Keller Williams Realty NYC

Susan works with her partner Janet Wilkinson for the Wilkinson LeFevre Team in the competitive high-end Manhattan Real Estate market for Keller Williams Realty in New York City. Staging in these luxury units is a great opportunity to raise the price and increase buyer interest.


  • “When preparing and presenting a property for sale, the two main goals are maximizing value and attracting the largest number of potential buyers.  Staging is important in order to provide the best impression of a property.

  • To maximize value, review the space for areas that need to be fixed or cleaned.  Space presents the best when it is clean and well maintained.  Shiny and clean windows are a must.  The goal is to spend wisely on thoughtful and strategic improvements for the best effect.

  • Buyers need to be able to see themselves in the space, so rooms should be de-cluttered and personal items and pictures kept to a minimum. Closets and cabinets should be orderly and organized so that the space can be seen.

  • Ultimately every space is different so a thoughtful review is always the starting point of any staging discussion.”

    Thanks to all the experts for their TIPS!

Moving soon? Get rid of your unnessecary clutter beforehand; read our post on the 10 things you should get rid of before moving (and how to get rid of them). 

LIKE OUR FACEBOOK PAGE for more great moving content:


Like Oz Moving & Storage on Facebook

  • Learn About Our Community Involvement

    See how we are helping to make our community a better place

    Read About Our Involvement
  • Let's Get Moving

    This moving checklist allows you to get organized and customize plans that best suit your needs

    View Our Checklist