New real estate staging tactic: happy family

Company adds fake mom, dad, kids to model homes

As the potential buyers filed into the open house in Southern California, they gasped in surprise. Instead of the traditional empty residence with a few pieces of tastefully arranged furniture, they discovered a family baking a cake.

Like the tastefully arranged furniture and the cake in the oven, the family was part of the staging of the Centex model home in Santa Clarita, Calif. — completely fake.