What is the Difference Between Home Staging and Decorating?

What is the Difference Between Home Staging And Decorating?
Jennifer Jewell Avatar
Published By Jennifer Jewell

Question: What is the difference between home staging and decorating?

Answer: Home staging is the process of preparing a property for sale to appeal to a broad range of buyers, focusing on neutral and depersonalized designs. Decorating, on the other hand, is personalizing and furnishing a home to suit the taste and preferences of the homeowner.

What is the Difference Between Home Staging and Decorating? How Staging vs. Decorating Affects Home Value

When entering the realm of real estate and home interiors, two terms often surface: home staging and decorating. While they may seem interchangeable at first glance, they serve distinct purposes. Let’s dive in to discern the difference between these two art forms.

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Foundations: The Purpose Behind Each

Home Staging

At its core, home staging aims to make a property more appealing to potential buyers. It involves presenting the house in a way that highlights its strengths, minimizes its flaws, and appeals to the widest audience possible. Stagers often use furniture, decor, and layout adjustments to showcase the potential of a space. The primary goal? Speed up the sale and possibly increase the property’s value.

Related Article: What is the Disadvantage of Home Staging?
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Decorating, on the other hand, revolves around personalizing a space to reflect the homeowner’s tastes, lifestyle, and comfort. It doesn’t target potential buyers. Instead, decorating focuses on creating a lived-in feel, sometimes infusing the home with memories, personal items, and unique style choices.

The Temporary vs. The Permanent

Home Staging

Staging often involves temporary changes. Stagers might bring in their furniture, use neutral artwork, or rearrange spaces to make them look larger and more inviting. Once the property sells, these elements get removed, returning the home to its original state.


Decorating deals with more permanent choices. This could mean selecting wall colors, investing in furniture pieces, or picking out permanent fixtures like lighting or cabinetry. These choices stay with the home and are for the long-term enjoyment of the residents.

A Matter of Neutrality vs. Personality

Home Staging

Staging gravitates towards neutrality. A stager will usually opt for neutral color palettes and universally appealing decor to ensure potential buyers can envision themselves in the space. They avoid polarizing or overly personal choices.


Decorating embraces personality. It’s all about showcasing the homeowner’s style, whether that’s vibrant bohemian patterns, vintage charm, or sleek modern aesthetics. It’s more personal and can be as unique as the homeowner themselves.

Budget Considerations: Spend to Sell vs. Spend to Enjoy

Home Staging

With staging, the spending rationale is often "spend money to make money." Investments in staging can lead to quicker sales and higher selling prices, offering a return on the initial outlay. However, stagers often work with rental pieces to keep costs down.


When decorating, homeowners usually spend for their enjoyment. They’ll invest in pieces they love and plan to use for years. While some may splurge on a statement piece, others might stick to a budget, but the primary focus remains personal satisfaction. [ 1 ]

Trends vs. Timelessness

Home Staging:

Stagers often lean into current home trends, making the property feel contemporary and in touch with what’s popular. This approach can make the home more appealing to buyers looking for a move-in-ready solution.


While decorators might incorporate trends, they also focus on timelessness, especially for significant pieces or fixtures. After all, homeowners want their choices to stand the test of time, ensuring their home feels stylish for years to come.

The Local Touch: Navigating Ontario’s Preferences

In Ontario, both staging and decorating play crucial roles in the real estate and interior design spheres. The province’s diverse housing market, from urban condos in Toronto to sprawling estates in the countryside, means a wide range of tastes and preferences.

Home Staging:

Stagers in Ontario often blend urban chic with classic comforts, striking a balance that appeals to a broad audience. Given the province’s competitive real estate market, particularly in urban centers, staging becomes invaluable in making a property stand out.


Ontarians have a rich tapestry of cultural influences, which reflects in decorating styles. From European elegance to rustic Canadiana, decorating in Ontario is as varied as its residents. However, there’s a shared appreciation for comfort, warmth, and functionality.

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In Conclusion: A Complementary Duo

While home staging and decorating serve different purposes, they both revolve around the power of aesthetics and the impact of a well-curated space. Whether you’re preparing to sell your home or looking to rejuvenate your current living space, understanding the distinction between these two can guide your choices and help achieve your goals.


1. https://www.houzz.com/magazine/staging-vs-decorating-what-s-the-difference-stsetivw-vs~3204468

Jennifer Jewell Avatar

Jennifer Jewell, a licensed real estate representative serving Caledon, Orangeville, Shelburne, Dufferin County and Peel. A graduate of both Humber College and the Ontario Real Estate College Jennifer earned her stripes selling a high volume of real estate in the city, gaining the experience of handling twenty-plus multiple offer situations with a top one percent, multiple award-winning real estate group. A ten-year resident of Dufferin County Jennifer made the move north and quickly made a name for herself, with a reputation for tenaciously protecting her client’s interests. Jennifer is dedicated to serving you with savvy client-focused negotiations and state-of-the-art marketing strategies. Loyal clientele, personal referrals and repeat business form the foundation of Jennifer’s career offering seamless assistance to you for every aspect of your home purchase or sale. Contributor to the Toronto Star, Orangeville Banner and Caledon Citizen as well as being named ThreeBest Rated Five years straight with over 150+ Google reviews and growing. Get in touch with Jen here.