Friday, March 22, 2013

Showcase Your Short Sale

Visited a young couple the other day for a home staging consultation. Their realtor had referred me as she is a big believer in staging a home for sale. Even a "short sale".

The first impression I had was NO parking space because two large pickup trucks and a trailer filled the driveway.

TIP Park your cars and trucks on the street if possible. The garage should have enough clear space to park at least one of your cars. Yes, that means cleaning out your garage!

My second impression was the entry was not inviting. There were two chairs and a table on porch slab area, empty planters with dirt and no color.

TIP Your entry has to be inviting. Simply set the scene by arranging any furniture to look as if it can be used for additional living space and add fresh seasonal flowers to your empty pots. Even in winter/early spring there are pansies or geraniums you can plant that will handle cold snaps.

Third impression, walking in the front door. Every room was painted a different bold color. 

TIP It's fun to experiment and personalize your home with color but realize that every buyer will have a different opinion on your choices. By asking buyers to accept your taste, you're narrowing the number who will. It doesn't have to be beige but you do have to give the potential buyer of your home the ability to see how their furnishings and taste can live in your home. Neutral also makes your home larger and square footage sells. 

TIP Paint, prepack and clean. No one wants to inherit a home that needs painting and cleaning. If you don't want to do it what makes you think your buyers will?

Prepacking takes the "you" out of the home and gives the buyer a chance to see your home as it could be if they lived in it. My young clients had a lot of Dallas Cowboy decor upstairs in the family room. When I told him that had to go, he even admitted if he walked into a home and there was a rival team's logos or colors, he wouldn't buy it! Point made.

Minimal cost involved is paint and a few cleaning supplies which you probably already have. Don't leave valuable money and equity on the table (even if you are looking at a short sale). The better your house presents, the better you will come out of any purchase negotiation. It's your money, hang onto it!

Friday, March 8, 2013

What's Hot for Kitchen Counters?

At Hampton Redesign, it's no secret I am a fan of updating a kitchen to get the most bang for your buck when staging your home for sale. It's the one room that really speaks to us when we preview a home. It has to have a little wow factor to entice buyers and that's why I'm going to share this great article about kitchen counters with you.

Now the "go to" counter top has been granite for quite a while. There's a reason for that. It has a lot of character if you choose the right color. It's a natural stone and therefore has all the depth of thousands of colors as well as light reflectivity which really helps a kitchen sparkle.

If you look at all the alternatives, granite is also one of the most affordable options. Of course you can blow the budget on fancy granite but the lower grades which are still quite nice are more affordable than almost any other option other than laminate or tile.

You can read about the pros and cons of different products in the article. I personally love the drama of granite. It's also relatively easy to keep clean and look good. Stone can hide a multitude of sins and as long as you keep it wiped down and treated periodically it should last and last.

My suggestion to you is look at granite and look at some of the other options to get a feel for what speaks to you. If you decide to go for granite, you can personally pick out your slab (one) and (two) go for something a little different than the usual. Just ask for grades in your budget and off you go!