Is It Better to Stage a House or Empty It?

It’s been a long time since I moved, and based on the fact that moving is one of my 5 least favorite things, I’ll most likely spend the rest of my life in this condo.

But I have a friend who recently purchased a new house, and they’re trying to figure out the best way to sell their current home. We had an interesting discussion about whether it’s better to stage the house or simply empty it and move out.

From the sound of it, realtors prefer to stage houses. They want to help people what it would be like to live in an immaculate, decorated home. As a kid, sometimes my parents would take us to staged houses just for fun, and even then there was a special sense of wonder as we explored every room and imagined our lives in them.

On the other hand, an empty house provides a clean slate. It reeks of unlimited potential–there’s nothing between you and your new life. Also, there’s a sense of immediacy to it. When I see a blank house/condo, I feel like I could move in tomorrow.

What do you think? For the purpose of selling your home, is it better to stage a house or empty it?