Staging Checklist


  • Test all lights to see if they work
  • Repair holes/scratches in walls & paint
  • Identify and make any repairs
  • Store unnecessary items out of sight
  • Declutter; remove excess furniture, family items

Main Areas

  • Remove personal items/family photos
  • Remove visible clutter
  • Open shades and blinds
  • Empty waste baskets
  • Turn on all lights, and turn off all ceiling fans
  • Tidy up and store all children’s toys
  • Turn off televisions and computer screens
  • Remove all publications and mail
  • Minimize knick-knacks
  • Display attractive books
  • Vacuum carpets & sweep floors

Dining Room

  • Straighten and push in all chairs
  • Add centerpiece, candles, flowers
  • Set table for dinner
  • Add a bottle of wine and glasses


  • Make the beds, smoothing the wrinkles
  • Arrange decorative pillows
  • Put away clothing, shoes, personal items
  • Remove all family photos
  • Clear all surfaces of clutter
  • Clean under the bed!


  • Remove all items/art from fridge doors
  • Hide soaps and cleaning items
  • Store food in cabinets or pantry
  • Hide towels and sponges
  • Put away dishes and small appliances
  • Clear sink; put away draining rack
  • De-clutter counters and stove
  • Minimize and organize open shelves
  • Place bowl of fruit on the counter


  • Remove all items from the tub or shower
  • Clear counters of personal items/toiletries
  • Empty garbage; hide bins
  • Hang fresh towels neatly from racks
  • Clean toilet (close lid), tubs and showers
  • Clean mirrors, glass, and tile surfaces


  • Hide pet dishes, toys, and beds
  • Have pets cared for off-premises during photography


  • Remove vehicles
  • Close all windows
  • Store away toys, bicycles, etc.
  • Store away seasonal items
  • Stow all garden tools, supplies, and hoses
  • Straighten and arrange outdoor furniture
  • Clean outdoor areas (deck, pool, walks)
  • Mow lawns and manicure gardens
  • (Winter) Clear snow and ice from the driveway and walks

Before the day of photography, your home should be thoroughly cleaned, carpets vacuumed, and floors washed. All windows, mirrors, and other glass or shiny surfaces should be washed and polished. Your entire home should gleam, both inside and out.

For your photography, your house should be bright. Turn on all the lights, open all window blinds and shades, turn on any gas fireplace, and maybe light a few candles.

The house should also be free of distractions. Move pets (and people) to another location, and remove all vehicles from the property and street front.

Be ready in advance for the photography. The photographer will not assist with the staging, neither will they move furniture or wait for you to get things prepared.