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  • Writer's picturemichele5196

Do Empty Homes Look Bigger? (nope)

Updated: Oct 1, 2020

I was recently asked, "Would an empty home look bigger?" And on its face, the question seems logical - if there is literally more empty space to walk around in, shouldn't the room feel larger than when "stuff" is added?

The short answer is "no." And the reason has everything to do with perspective - or lack thereof in a vacant home.

Take a look at the before and after above. While the empty room looks super long, the width looks ridiculously skinny. It doesn't appear wide enough to comfortably fit a living room set in a normal, conversational layout. The long, narrow, empty space in this formal living room really confused buyers during showings. Notice how much WIDER the room looks after we staged it, and less long & intimidating it now feels. As an aside, the buyers of this home were so happy with the furniture and loved the room so much that they purchased everything you see, exactly as you see it - yay!

"An empty room almost ALWAYS looks smaller than it really is." - National Association of Realtors

An empty room gives buyers no perspective to the room's size. There is no frame of reference. The walls, windows and doors become the focal point, often visually bringing the walls IN on the space, giving the illusion of a room that feels much more narrow, shallow or smaller than it is. When there is nothing in the room for the eye to refer to, homes can play tricks on the eye. Depth perception and width recognition is completely skewed in an empty home, both in photos and in person.


This tiny empty room would have left a lot of buyers with questions about its size and whether it was large enough to be a functional dining space. Realtors and sellers really don't want confused potential buyers walking away from (or scrolling past) a property because they "just aren't sure if the rooms could work."

By staging the room I was able to show buyers that they comfortably could fit not only a table but also a quaint seating area. And when you're selling a home, a very important goal is to answer questions such as room size, function and potential layout so when they walk through the home, they have the best idea of what they are getting.

After Staging

When our team adds staging to a vacant property, we aren't just making the space look and feel attractive, we're intentionally taking the guesswork out of the room's size. Buyers can now see how large or small the room actually is because they have something to get visual perspective from. This helps them determine if their belongings or future purchases will also fit in a room. And by helping buyers more easily "mentally move in" and picture themselves living there, we're much more likely to get a sale.

To learn more about Home Staging with Michele Haines and White Fence Homes, visit us on Facebook, Instagram and our website!

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