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Highlights from a Home Stager: Defining “The Staged Look”

6 Jun

IS2b56hj4gdyy40000000000OMG- Hi Everyone!!!  It’s been forever!

Way back when, we were talking about why home staging helps homes sell quicker and for more money than unstaged homes.  We touched on some self-staging tips, and we discussed creating the perfect MLS photo.  Then April hit, Spring Market went wild, and it’s just been a whirlwind of staging ever since!  But, we did want to get back to important things (like the blog) and explain “The Staged Look”.

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First, a brief comparison between “Home Staging” and “Interior Design”-  Obviously, there are some common themes.  Both, staging and design center around aesthetics, presentation and style.  But, this is pretty much where the similarities end.
The goal of interior design is to create a space based on the desires and needs of a very specific user. Alternatively, the goal of staging is to create a generally appealing and functional space that connects with a very general demographic audience. Think of when you walk through a store and see a display that capture’s your attention. Maybe you do not love every item in the grouping, but the overall sharpness and attention to detail creates a presentation that draws you in. This is how I think of staging- Property Merchandising.  The best way to professionally design your home is to hire a great interior designer. And the best way to professionally stage your home is to hire a great stager.

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Here are a few general rules for creating “the staged look”:

It’s Contemporary.  Whether we are staging a modern new construction home in Fishtown, a rehabbed row home in South Philly, or a sprawling tudor home in Montgomery County, contemporary furnishing works best for staging.  We will take direction from the style of the home so that the staging feels appropriate (we can definitely influence style with art/accessory selections and styling).  But contemporary furniture tends to work best because it is a style that everyone can understand, whether it is their personal preference or not- sort of a middle ground.  Traditional furnishing tends to be heavy and ornate, distracting from the prospective buyer’s ability to envision the space as anything but it’s current presentation.  Modern design centers a great deal on form and silhouette.  It tends to be very minimal- very sculptural.  It can be intimidating to many prospective buyers, leaving them questioning where they’d put all their stuff!  Contemporary furnishing offers an “insert your furniture here” type of presentation.  In keeping it clean and simple, prospective buyers have an easier time connecting with the space, itself.

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It’s neutral in style, in color, in subject matter.  Purple walls, pink furniture, and orange accents may be perfect for you- but the odds that it is going to be perfect for your buyer are fairly low.  But grey walls, white furniture and a few pops of orange- now we’re talkin’!  That feels fresh, airy, and a little fun.  (FYI- Stagers LOVE pops of color!  Every single item does not have to be Drabsville, USA-  Just be selective.)  Neutral, in a broader sense, relates to creating an environment that won’t make the prospective buyer feel like they are creeping through a someone else’s home.  You want the prospective buyer to be able to envision themselves living in the space.  Ideally, you want a wide array of prospective buyers that pass through the home and be able to envision themselves and their families living in the space.  To help every prospective buyer find that vision,  remove personal photos, take down religious artwork, replace anything that is political or controversial in subject manner.  A great substitute for these types of wall décor would be city-scapes, nature photography, or abstract art.

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It demonstrates functionality.  This is important in small spaces where every inch counts, and equally important in large spaces where prospective buyers may need an assist in furniture layout.  Show what’s important and get rid of the extras- especially little tables and small bookshelves that are serving no purpose.  In small spaces, we specifically try to define a TV space, an eating space, a work space, and a sleeping space.  While it is not generally necessary to stage every bedroom in a home, we do recommend showing small bedrooms with the largest possible bed in order to help prospective buyers understand the potential of the room.  In large spaces, we are often demonstrating how to break one room into a space that can host multiple functions with fluidity.  One example would be a great room that includes a TV area, conversation area, and a work space.  Another example would be a master suite that is large enough to house a master den.

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Well, folks…  There you have it!

Contemporary furnishing + Neutralizing & Decluttering + Good layout= #StagedandSold

Thanks for reading!

And, when it comes to professional home staging, whether vacant or occupied, contact Ali at Sunflower Creations
akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com or 267.207.9898

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

 

Highlights from a Home Stager: Why Would You Stage A Perfectly Good Property?

20 Feb

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Bridgeview Condominiums in Old City

 

Every day we meet with homeowners, builders and realtors who want to know about staging- How it works, Why it works, Will it work…  So, we thought we’d take it back to the beginning and talk a little bit about why staging adds value, how we approach the process, and why we think Sunflower Creations is successful at helping get homes sold all over Philadelphia and surrounding neighborhoods.  If you are considering staging, – please read on.  If you are already a believer, you can skip the boring text and just look at the pretty pictures!

 

So, Question #1:  Why would you stage your home prior to listing it for sale?  Basically, either because the property is vacant, or because you actually live in your home and everything isn’t perfect at all times.  We will talk more about occupied staging in our next post, but today we’re going to focus on vacant home staging.

  1.  It all begins with the click of a link…  It doesn’t matter if you are listing your family home, a rental property, or a new build- the fundamental process is the same- the more interest you generate, the more traffic you get to the listing.  The more traffic you get, the greater the potential for more offers.  And the more offers you get, the more you- the seller- are in control of the deal.  Since we have the internet, most prospective buyers will be introduced to your home, along with about 400 other homes that meet their search criteria, by being presented with a thumbnail photo that will appear approximately 1*1 inches on a phone screen.  Make the most of that inch.  A photo of walls is pretty easy to skip.  A photo with colors and shapes might grab a viewer’s attention for just a second longer, and that second could be the difference between a showing and a pass.  (Small aside- whether you hire a professional stager or do it yourself, hire a professional photographer.  Again, the picture is going to dictate how the story goes- make it a really good picture).

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2.  You didn’t do all the updates you intended...  So, maybe you never got around to installing stone counter tops in the kitchen, or perhaps you ran out of time before you had a chance to remodel the closets, or maybe the original hardwood floors could have used a sanding but …  It’s time to list- it is what it is- and you are pricing the property appropriately.  Staging is a good idea for you.  We do not stage to cover up problems- what we do is create a aesthetic that feels fresh and welcoming.  We help prospective buyers see the full potential of the home by highlighting the best parts.  A side effect of that is focus less on every scratch in the floor or chip in the paint. We make prospective buyers say, “This house feels like home to us.  All it needs is (a coat of paint) (a sanding of the floors) (a bathroom update), but it’s totally move-in ready”.

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3.  The home is brand new construction…  It’s literally perfect, but you should stage it…  Here’s a couple things about new construction  (a) It can feel very sterile because everything is new, and that is not inviting.  Even just a light staging provides the opportunity to bring in some softness and variety of texture. (b) Much of the competition is staged, so you need to stay competitive.  Again- it’s not just about having a great property;  It’s about getting prospective buyers to notice it.  (c) Architects and builders have the ability to visualize the finished product, which is what makes them good at their jobs. Most homebuyers do not have that ability.  And open-concept floorplans are especially difficult.  If potential buyers can not envision how to live in the space, they will move on to the next listing.

So, Thanks for stopping by today!

We hope you found this information helpful- and feel free to pass it along to your friends or clients.

If you’d like to set up a quick complimentary consultation, contact Ali at akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com or 267.207.9898.

For vacant home staging, a consult 2-3 week’s prior to intended completion date is ideal. And in the case of occupied home staging, the more time we have prior to listing, the more we can help you perfect your product.

Tune in next time, when we’ll turn the focus toward occupied home staging.

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

Highlights From a Home Stager: Before and Afters, Baby…

6 Feb

Here’s a little before and after action from a property we staged a few months back.  This is one of my personal favorites from last year because it is the poster child for the power of staging.  We’ve got an adorable house, priced right, on a nice street- and several months went by with no offers.

The sellers called us for a consult, had it staged on a Friday- and chose from 3 good offers on the following Monday.   They settled at 10% over asking price!

Enter through the front door into your charming, sun-drenched enclosed porch…  We replaced the dark curtains with shears, added a couple of area rugs, and a few pieces of furniture to create a first impression that sets a positive tone- and a functional space that is more than just a pass-thru area.

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Those white sheers make SUCH a difference.

 

Next, we have a nice size living room with exposed brick, mantel, and built-ins.

Cute right? But where does the sofa go?

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Now, I think the next space is the most confusing for prospective buyers.  The large support beam kind of divides the dining room into 2 separate areas, and I think people were just really unsure about how they’d be able to make the space work.

We created an additional hang-out area that bridges the space between the living room and the dining area.  Maybe drinks?  Maybe a place to sit away from the TV?

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And finally, the kitchen is a very bold color and featured patterned window treatments.  We just replaced the valence panels with sheers, which have a more contemporary vibe.

Click here to view the full property listing.

Thanks for looking!

If you are preparing to list, or if you have clients who are preparing to list, get us involved!

For vacant home staging, a consult 2-3 week’s prior to intended completion date is ideal. And in the case of occupied home staging, the more time we have prior to listing, the more we can help you perfect your product.

So, contact Ali at akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com or 267.207.9898 to get that ball rolling. Or visit us at Sunflower Creations Home.

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

Highlights of a Home Stager: Luxury Staging in Rittenhouse Square

10 May

This luxury staging was deigned with modern, sleek designs in mind. A uniquely shaped sectional adds more interest in the large open living space. Many new luxury homes have large windows to let in as much natural light as possible. However, this tends to make future home owners weary about furniture layout. Bringing the sectional forward creates space between the window and the room, keeping the airy feel.

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A wide living space requires multiple seating areas. Keeping the furniture style and colors consistent is essential to creating a cohesive style throughout a large room.

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The dining room and kitchen were designed with many modern fixtures and finishes. In order to keep the staging consistent with the home’s style we used a combination of furniture with wood finishes and white sleek materials.

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The spacious master bedroom was also designed with a large picture window. Strategically placing a settee  angled in front of the window makes it seem less overwhelming.

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The guest bedroom is bright and airy. A slight and consistent pop of color adds interest, while keeping the design neutral.

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A bonus family room continues the modern style with sleek wooden furniture and a modern sofa in a neutral color scheme.

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Check out some more homes we’ve staged!


Thanks so much for looking!

Sunflower Creations is The Philly Home Stager because we are dedicated to:

Providing quick, reliable and professional service

Creating fabulous looking homes at competitive prices

Helping to sell your home quickly and profitably

Making every project our number one priority

We’d Love to Work With You On Your Next Project:

Vacant Home Staging and Furniture, Art, Accessories Rental

Occupied Home Staging Consultations

Builder’s Services and Finish Selections

Interior Design

and more…

For a free consultation, please contact

Ali Kutner, Home Staging Coordinator

267.207.9298

akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com

or visit us at Sunflower Creations Home

croped logo

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

Highlights of a Home Stager: Making small spaces work!

26 Apr

Having a small space doesn’t have to be detrimental to selling a home. The key is to not overload the space, making it seem smaller than it is. -

Extra seating is a common request, but too much seating would make this living room seem small and closed off. Leaving a wide opening to the kitchen created visual space, and makes the living room appear larger.

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Having a designated dining area is a huge seller in a small home. By using a high top bar table we raised the dining away from the floor creating the illusion of more space.

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The bedroom did not have a lack of space issue, so we used bright and bold colors to make it pop, creating a lasting impression.


Check out some more homes we’ve staged!


Thanks so much for looking!

Sunflower Creations is The Philly Home Stager because we are dedicated to:

Providing quick, reliable and professional service

Creating fabulous looking homes at competitive prices

Helping to sell your home quickly and profitably

Making every project our number one priority

We’d Love to Work With You On Your Next Project:

Vacant Home Staging and Furniture, Art, Accessories Rental

Occupied Home Staging Consultations

Builder’s Services and Finish Selections

Interior Design

and more…

For a free consultation, please contact

Ali Kutner, Home Staging Coordinator

267.207.9298

akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com

or visit us at Sunflower Creations Home

croped logo

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

Highlights of a Home Stager: Staged and Sold After Only 2 Days!!

15 Mar

This lovely split level home was on the market for over two months before the realtor asked Sunflower to step in. The house had amazing features- a Jacuzzi tub, an entire floor devoted to the open kitchen and dining area, large bedrooms, and a cozy entry living room- but buyers had a hard time seeing its potential with the bare walls and empty rooms.

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When potential buyers came in their first impression was of a small living space, and were left to wonder, ‘Could I fit a couch in here?’ Now, there is no question that this space can house a comfortable living area.

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The dining room is also looked to be on the smaller side when empty, but adding a sizable table and six dining chairs shows that looks can be deceiving.

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Using a king mattress really shows future buyers just how large this master bedroom is.

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The bathroom could sell itself, in my opinion, but a few accessories never hurt!

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Just a little bit more proof that staging really works!


Check out some more homes we’ve staged!


Thanks so much for looking!

Sunflower Creations is The Philly Home Stager because we are dedicated to:

Providing quick, reliable and professional service

Creating fabulous looking homes at competitive prices

Helping to sell your home quickly and profitably

Making every project our number one priority

We’d Love to Work With You On Your Next Project:

Vacant Home Staging and Furniture, Art, Accessories Rental

Occupied Home Staging Consultations

Builder’s Services and Finish Selections

Interior Design

and more…

For a free consultation, please contact

Ali Kutner, Home Staging Coordinator

267.207.9298

akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com

or visit us at Sunflower Creations Home

croped logo

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.

Highlights of a Home Stager: Detailing- Staged & SOLD!

28 Dec

Our second detailing blog! These are becoming more and more popular with the mainline homes. Detailing an occupied home is an important tool for selling your home faster. Don’t make home buyer look past the clutter, show them a move in ready home that they can see themselves in. This home was on the market for over a month when they decided to bring in Sunflower Creations, and that decision really paid off- it sold shortly after!

An undefined entry makes for a poor first impression.

 

Clutter distracts buyers from the space.

 

The oversized seating in this room made it seem much smaller than it was. Some smaller, sleeker love seats, simple art work, and a much needed decluttering turned this room into the classy sitting area this home deserved.

A set table makes a world of difference.

Some slight changes make this living room more inviting.

We showcased the amazing bed frame these home owners already had. We also decluttered the bookshelf, making it both functional and decorative. Adding a sitting nook didn’t  hurt either!

Bedroom Befores and Afters!

A formerly unused corner in the basement was transformed into a reading nook using one of the oversized arm chairs from the sitting room.


(Click here to see the full property listing)


Check out some more homes we’ve detailed!


Thanks so much for looking!

Sunflower Creations is The Philly Home Stager because we are dedicated to:

Providing quick, reliable and professional service

Creating fabulous looking homes at competitive prices

Helping to sell your home quickly and profitably

Making every project our number one priority

We’d Love to Work With You On Your Next Project:

Vacant Home Staging and Furniture, Art, Accessories Rental

Occupied Home Staging Consultations

Builder’s Services and Finish Selections

Interior Design

and more…

For a free consultation, please contact

Ali Kutner, Home Staging Coordinator

267.207.9298

akutner@sunflowercreationsonline.com

or visit us at Sunflower Creations Home

croped logo

…Home Staging in 19128, 19127, 19119, 19118, 19130, 19121, 19123, 19125, 19134, 19103, 19102, 19104, 19106, 19107, 19146, 19147, 19139, 19143, 19145, 19148, 19004, 19003, 19035, and all Philadelphia and Surrounding Suburbs.