The Top 5 Challenges Australian Home Stagers Face (And How We’re Handling Them)

Transforming properties into stunning spaces is a dream job, but it comes with its fair share of hurdles. Today, we’re diving into the top five challenges we face as Australian home stagers and sharing our two cents on handling them.

Let us know if we missed any major challenges in the comments.

 1. Staffing: The Never-Ending Puzzle

Finding and keeping the right team is probably the biggest and most constant challenge. You never really “solve” the staffing problem; it’s a dynamic, ever-changing situation. From figuring out when to hire someone new to ensuring they’re the right fit, it’s a juggling act.

Once you have a team, you also need to train them. We’ve developed an in-house training process that allows us to maintain our high standards and ensure every team member is on the same page. Protecting our team culture and letting go of the wrong people is just as important as hiring the right ones.

More on Team Culture here:

“Hire the person before you think you need them. This way, you have time to train and integrate them into your team.”

 2. Finding New Work: Be The Backup Stylist

Securing new projects and building a steady stream of work is a challenge many home stagers face. One strategy you could use: Be the backup stylist. We aim to be the name agents think of when their first choice falls through. Reach out to Agents you’d like to work with, not to sell, but to introduce yourself and let them know that if for whatever reason their stylist can’t deliver, that you’re available to be a backup option.

And of course, marketing. We’ve put significant money, time and effort into our marketing. And we will continue to do so. Creating a strong online presence keeps us top-of-mind for potential clients.

“We don’t approach it as a sales opportunity; we aim to develop genuine relationships.”

 3. Pricing: Balancing Value and Competition

Pricing your services can be difficult, especially when you’re constantly undercut by competitors. The key is to be confident in your pricing and communicate your value effectively.

“Someone is always going to be the cheapest. Be confident in your value and be okay with walking away from work that doesn’t match your worth.”

We base our pricing on a combination of cost-plus-margin and ensuring we can pay back our furniture investments within a specific number of jobs. It’s all about finding what works for you and sticking to it.

More on pricing your services here:

4. Sourcing Stock: The Hunt for Quality and Affordability

Finding the right suppliers for furniture and accessories can be a bit of a treasure hunt, even more so for stagers outside major cities. When we started, we relied heavily on local suppliers, paying a bit more for the convenience of immediate access. Over time, we expanded our horizons to wholesale suppliers, which required building relationships and understanding trade versus wholesale dynamics.

“Building relationships with suppliers is crucial. They get to know your limits and preferences, making the whole process smoother.”

Attending trade fairs like the Reed Gift Fair in Melbourne has been a game-changer, helping us discover amazing suppliers and negotiate better deals.

5. Capital Investment: When to Take the Leap

Deciding when to invest in big-ticket items like a warehouse or a truck can be daunting. These choices often involve significant financial commitments.

“If your ambition is to grow, the sooner you make these investments, the sooner you reap the benefits.”

We hope sharing our experiences helps you navigate these common challenges. To be honest, the real value in an article like this is that you get a sense that you aren’t alone. Business can be tough. Home Staging isn’t for the faint hearted. Rest assured we are all going through the same problems.

If you’ve got any burning questions or tips to share, pop them in the comments below. Let’s keep the conversation going and help each other out.

This article was based on a Foxy TV Episode on YouTube. It provides a more detailed explanation to the above position. Watch it below.

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