Our client lived in a bright, urban townhouse located in an high-demand area of Mississauga. He purchased the home directly from the builder 5 years previously, and like many original owners, he was looking to sell and move up to a larger home.
My first impression was that the home benefited from having all the modern amenities you would expect in a newer home, such as an open concept floor plan, an extra bathroom upstairs, and modern appliances. What it lacked was simple cosmetic styling, which is easy to fix. Our client didn’t have the right furniture for the space, it wasn’t decorated properly, it was cluttered with daily life, and the house was still painted in the builder primer.
With the high price of homes, sellers expect more for their money. No matter the market, homes that are styled and turn-key sell far better than homes missing that finishing touch. Our client knew that without the proper home preparation, he was leave money on the table when selling.
The owner contacted me in the winter, looking to sell his home in the spring. This is the ideal situation, when a client gives our team several weeks to help prepare the home for sale. When you only leave yourself a week or two to prepare your home, you will never achieve the best possible outcome.
Like many savvy home sellers, he did his research, watched the TV shows and knew the value of making the home look great. His challenge was that he didn’t know where to begin, and after interviewing a number of other real estate agents who were only concerned with getting the contract signed, he contacted me for a second opinion.
“A Blank Slate” is how our designer Stephanie described the space before the transformation. “Fortunately, our client wanted to make the house shine and implemented our suggestions for maximum impact”
Our client wanted to know everything he could reasonably do to ensure his home appealed to as many buyers as possible. With some minor upgrades and a lot of accessorizing, we made it happen with great success.
As is the case with all the homes we list for sale, the first step was to set an appointment for Stephanie, our Home Stager, to view the home. We are always looking to identify the best features of the home and how to highlight it. We also address any negatives of the homes and how to downplay it as much as possible so that it is not an issues for the buyer.
The client painted the entire home Benjamin Moore Barren Plain 2111-60. To add interest to the neutral colour, we suggested an accent wall in the Living/Dining Room, Benjamin Moore Escarpment CC-518.
These colours are darker than most people initially think to choose, but with all of the windows, it held its own and didn’t make the room feel dark at all. It was a warm backdrop for the art and accessories we would layer on top of it.
Accenting the Windows
We accented all of the windows in the living and dining room with contrasting drapes, because they were such a significant feature. We introduced grey tones in the accent drapes and furniture, to create more layers of texture and colour. Yes you can mix 2 neutrals in one room; Taupe & Grey, Navy and Tan, etc. Nothing needs to be matchy-matchy, it just needs to repeat and flow.
A favourite trick is to use drapes with a modern yet universal pattern, since many rooms are lacking texture and pattern. With the constant focus of adding layers of interest, drapes are an easy way to achieve this goal without breaking the bank.
Also in the bedrooms, we used simple drapes and sheers to remind buyers how many windows the house had and the light the rooms benefit from.
Art & Accessories
We then popped in accents in gold metal, and shades of blue and green in the art, accents and bedding. This is a critical step to ensure listing photos pop and grab the buyer’s attention. We also have a rule that every room needs a little black and a little white. This ensures balance of colour and contrast.
Another key element to successful staging is to create interesting vignettes to surprise and attract the buyer. No, a vignette itself will not sell your home, but its about creating enjoyable experiences as they travel through your home, to build that positive impression.
We also upgraded the lights in the dining room and the eating area, with modern black metal pendants. Box stores have come a long way and have stylish, affordable, and attractive lighting. Many homes lack any significant architectural detail, so often an upgraded (yet affordable) light fixture is the best opportunity to add interest. At box store prices, you always get 100% return on money invested in overhead lighting.