PHOTO: Real Estate agent David B. Atkins of Martha Turner Sotheby’s International Realty is lord of a 13,000 sq.ft. warehouse filled with furniture for staging homes for sale. (Photo by Shelby Hodge)

As master of a 13,000 square foot warehouse brimming with home furnishings, David B. Atkins might be mistaken for a furniture salesman or interior decorator. Au contraire. Atkins is actually one of the top agents with Martha Turner Sotheby’s International Realty. The 75 sofas, 300-plus paintings, hundreds of chairs and scores of lampshades strategically displayed in the Gulf Freeway warehouse are tools of his trade.

Staging the homes that he lists has become an integral component of Atkins’ business. At the moment, he has a dozen houses on the market that he has furnished in order to entice buyers who might have trouble imagining a dwelling without appropriate interiors. And so deft is he at creating just the right environment, a potential buyer for 1338 Mickey Way in Spring Valley has asked to purchase a full complement of the staged furnishings along with the house.

That is not what Atkins had in mind when he staged his first Houston house in 2012. He credits the tasteful furnishings with helping sell the house in a mere week.