Tag Archives: Home Staging

Stage Your Home To Sell with Free Help From Robb & Stucky

Staging Your home to SellWe all can agree that the most important decision you can make when selling your home is pricing it to sell.  The price determines whether your home sells or sits on the market.  However, the next important factor after pricing is appearance.  A well designed, functional home where home buyers can easily see themselves living in your home will move off the market fast and for the right price.  Before you list your home for sale with a Realtor® or even if it is already listed and not selling, take inventory of the appearance of your home.

Start at the curb and make sure your lawn is neatly trimmed, any debris and unnecessary items are removed, fill bare rock gardens, paint worn doors must be freshly painted.  Make it look as fresh as your budget allows.  Inside the home all clutter must be removed, excess furniture, pictures, ornaments.  Keep it clean and simple.  This is not the time to display an abundance of personal photos.  Home buyers need to visualize themselves in your home.  Personal photos and items can distract tremendously.  CLEAN your home.  Homes with years of dust, grime in tile grout, layers of dirt around light switches, doors, etc. is a huge turn off to home buyers.  They will not see past the dirt and grime.  They will walk in and right back out.  It doesn’t matter how well priced that home is.  Filth and odor is a turn off!

Next, take into consideration at how functional your home is with the contents within it.  A client and I were viewing some homes yesterday.  One home was vacant and left us feeling uneasy and seemed disjointed.  It just didn’t flow.  When we went to the second home, we found a huge difference.  It was the same floor plan, but having been filled with furniture it really helped improve the flow of the home.  Each room of your home has a purpose and should be staged appropriately to not cause confusion or leaving buyers feeling uncomfortable.

A great way to learn more about staging your home is to visit designer showrooms.  But, before I go any further, I need to explain how home staging differs from interior design before all the professional home stagers come after me for confusing the two.  Staging your home is not the same as designing your home.  Home staging is designing your home to sell.  You are designing for the general buyer not yourself or your family.  An interior designer helps you to design your home to your tastes and needs.  However, I do think as a someone selling their home, you can learn a great deal from the world of interior design on how to take what you have and arrange it to where your home is pleasing and functional for it’s purpose to sell.

I also believe in using all the resources available to you.  One resource is at Robb & Stucky.  The designer showroom off of PGA Boulevard offers free seminars throughout the year.  Take advantage of what the seminars have to offer.  You can take the opportunity to discuss your situation with one of their designers.  You may even take away some ideas for your future home!

If you find you need the services of a professional home stager, call or email me.  I can lead you to some great professionals in the area.

Susanne Quirk is a Realtor® with Cobblestone Realty specializing in residential homes in Jupiter, Juno Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Contact Susanne at (561) 386-0350, e-mail, or visit our website www.TheJunoBeachRealtor.com to learn more.

Similar Articles:

HGTV Home Staging Tips
Home Decor Tips
Staging Your Home

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Filed under Home Staging, Interior Design

Selling Your Home In 30 Days

sold.jpgBy Joe Quirk

Barbara Corcoran was on the Today Show recently with tips to Sell Your Home In 30 Days.  Some good tips to help homeowners focus on the important factors when selling their home and one very misleading tip that I would not recommend.  

1. Go online and shop for your own house.Most homeowners start their research online and that is a great start.  It gives you an understanding of where you are at in the market.  Many sites like Realtor.com, Trulia, and Zillow will allow you to search for current listing for selling prices and prices of recent homes sold.

2.  Find the least expensive 5 houses like yours and price it 5% below those prices.  I find this recommendation to be nothing more than media fluff.  It sounds great to the masses, but this is not a common strategy used among Realtors®.  Current selling prices won’t necessarily place you in the ball park for what the buying market is demanding.  It’s not what the houses are selling for, but what the houses have sold for, when they sold and other factors in the market that determine your selling price. 

We are in a very different market that is changing rapidly.  Pricing a home based on homes sold two months ago may lead you in the wrong direction.  Sellers vary in their reasons for pricing their homes and in a down market it is usually priced high.  Take considerable time in discussing the sale price of your home with your Realtor®.  It is a primary factor on the success of the sale of your home.  Following the advise of your Realtor® will increase the chances of selling your home. 

3.  Get rid of the clutter.  Envision when you walk through a model home.  What do you see?  It is functional – the furniture has a purpose.  Aunt Mary’s extra sofa isn’t sitting in the dining room.  There are pictures, but very few.  As Barbara mentioned,  buyers need to imagine themselves living in your home.  Get rid of the excess family pictures.  You may want to replace picture collections with  framed prints that accent the colors and furniture in your home.  Get rid of all papers.  Go through your closets and store extra linens, etc. elsewhere.

4.  Make your home look picture perfect like a model home.  Provide plenty of light throughout your home.  Buyers purchase homes that have plenty of lighting because it makes your home seem bigger and brighter. 

5.  Clean your home.  Replace old shower curtains and  put fresh towels in your bathrooms.  If you have children, have your Realtor® show your home by appointment only to help relieve the pressure of keeping everything in order all the time.  Hire a cleaning crew if you cannot do the job yourself and always make sure that your home smells inviting. Light a few scented candles and if you have pets, make sure that those odors are eliminated prior to showings

6.  Hire a killer Broker.  At the end of the day, what will get your house seen will be its exposure to the buying market. Your Realtor® will have the ability to show your home to more people in less time than if you try to sell it by yourself. That’s not to say some homeowners don’t sell their homes on their own, but that type of transaction is more probable in a “seller’s market” than the market we are in today.

If your want to sell your house, consider these tips but always contact a Realtor® to represent you .  Feel free to contact us for more information on who may best represent you.

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Home Decor Tips

Written by Susanne Quirk

It seems that our readership is hungry for information on home decorating and staging. Some readers just want to update their homes for personal satisfaction and others are on a mission to stage their home to sell. Whatever the reason may be, I always find it helpful to find inspiration through friends, family and the world wide web. Here are a few helpful hints I came up with:

I picked up this beautifully woven storage chest at Target. I absolutely love this addition to our family room because I store our100_2265.jpg toddler’s toys in it. My living room no longer looks like a playpen. Appearance is everything when selling your home. Show it off as your home where buyers will feel relaxed and comfortable.

My sister has become the home improvement guru in her house. She recently installed a customized closet organizer in her master bedroom. When shopping around, she found that having one professionally installed would cost over $6,000! Yikes. She found a great website (EasyClosets.com), planned the layout, ordered the materials and viola! She now has a beautiful walk-in closet and saved over $4,000 installing it herself! She has a great blog that is great to refer to for home decorating and scrapbooking.

UPDATE: I just spoke with my sister and she said that any Costco member can receive up to 20% of from EasyClosets.com. You will need to make the purchase through Costco to receive the discount. In addition, EasyClosets.com also advertises FREE SHIPPING for orders over $1,000!


HGTV.com has a great decorating blog called Design Happens Blog. Their website has some great decorating tips for every room in your 100_2270.jpghouse. I love their site. In fact, one of our recent postings from HGTV.com has been one of our most popular postings to date. See their home staging suggestions.

Flor.com happens to have one of the best ideas created for the home. They are carpet tiles of all different colors and patterns to use anywhere throughout your home. You can use them as an area rug, runner, or completely carpet your home. The best part about it is you can replace a tile as needed.

If preparing your house to sell is too much for you to think about, have a professional in Home Staging take care of it for you.

We’d like to hear from you. Comment back to us and send us your ideas and suggestions.





Filed under Blog, Home Staging, Interior Design, shopping

HGTV Designer Offers Her 30 Best Home Staging Tips

The following article is from HGTV.com.  Lisa LaPorta, Designer for hit show Designed To Sell offers some of her tried and true home staging tips to help you sell your home faster. 

1.  Grimy bathroom walls are a major red flag to buyers.shower.jpg

Here is an easy way to get rid of surface mold: Mix a spray bottle with one part water and one part bleach. Just spray it on the wall, and watch the mold disappear. Give it a fresh coat of paint, and your grimy bathroom will go from red-flag to red-hot.

2.  Don’t replace a yucky shower door — just scour it.

A grimy glass shower door can really wash out your sale. Instead of replacing it, clean it with a mixture of one part muriatic acid and about 10 parts water. Scrub with steel wool. After wiping it down, reinstall the door, and you’ll have a shower that’ll help you clean up at the open house.

3.  Avoid dated tile by painting.

Bathrooms sell houses, but dated tile in a bathroom doesn’t.  A low-cost alternative to replacing the tile is to use paint. First coat the tiles with a high-adhesion primer. Next, brush on a special ceramic epoxy covering. For a fraction of the cost of new tile, you will have an up-to-date bathroom that brings in big bucks.

4.  Pedestal sinks are a big hit with buyers.

They show off square footage in small bathrooms beautifully. First, your old vanity has to go. Next, just hook up your new sink, and your bathroom will have dramatic appeal that brings in big bucks. Plus, buyers will see how much floor space your bathroom has.

5.  A master bedroom should appeal to both sexes.

When you are selling, your master bedroom should appeal to buyers of both sexes. Get rid of features that seem too gender-specific. Paint the walls a neutral color, and choose bedding that matches. Then accessorize with items that complement the overall color scheme.

6.  Do you have an overpowering brick fireplace that sticks out like a sore thumb?

Here’s an easy way to tone it down with paint. Use a rag or brush to rub a light coat of paint on the bricks, one at a time. This will give them a new tone without covering them completely. And, if you use a paint color that matches the walls, your fireplace will go from sticking out to standing out.

7.  Updating an old fireplace screen is a cheap (and quick) fix.

After removing the screen and wiping it down to get rid of the dust, mask off the windows so you won’t get paint on them. Then, using a can of heat-resistant spray paint, give the screen a facelift. Hold the can about 18 inches away, and use long, even strokes. For less than $5, you will have a fireplace screen that’ll keep your sale from going up in smoke.

8.  Turn an unattractive fireplace into a selling feature.

Need to turn an unattractive fireplace into a selling feature? First, that dated brass screen has got to go. Next, give the fireplace a good cleaning, scrubbing it with soap and water. Then, using a stone color-enhancer, polish the bricks to make them shine. In no time you will have a fireplace that will turn your house into the hottest property on the block.

9.  Stain dated kitchen cabinets instead of replacing them.

Dated kitchen cabinets can be a big turnoff to potential buyers. Instead of paying big bucks to replace them, just stain them. First, apply the stain in even strokes, going with the grain of the wood. Add some stylish new hardware, and your kitchen will have the up-to-date look that buyers love, for less than $200.kitchen.jpg

10.  Stainless-steel appliances are definitely in with buyers.

Instead of buying a new dishwasher, here is a low-cost way to reface an old one: First, remove the front panels, and clean them. Next, apply a stainless-steel stick-on covering, and cut it to size. For just $20.

11.  Fill existing hardware holes instead of making new, unsightly ones.  

Removing old kitchen hardware can leave your cabinets with stripped out holes. Here is a trick to reusing the existing ones.
First, dip a toothpick in glue and place it in the stripped hole. Cut off the excess piece. Once the glue dries, you’ll be ready to put in the new hardware that buyers love.

12.  Save money on granite countertops.

Granite countertops are a huge selling feature, but they can be expensive. Here are a few ways to save on this investment:
First, do the demo yourself. Also, ask the vendor for remnants from previous projects. And remember, any money you spend will definitely be returned in the value these beautiful counters add to your kitchen.

13.  New kitchen appliances bring high returns from sellers.

Studies show that new kitchen appliances bring high returns from sellers, so get rid of old appliances that make the rest of the kitchen look dated. Once you install the new equipment, it will scream “new kitchen,” and you will see that spending a little money will make you even more.

14.  Need to dress up a window but don’t want to shell out big bucks for window treatments?

Here’s a trick: use place mats. First, apply a hook-and-loop fastener to the place mats and attach them in a row to a basic curtain rod. Now that the place mats are attached to the curtain rods, pin them together at the bottom, and you’ll have a stylish valance that only costs about $12.

15.  Adding drama to old hardwood flooring is easier than you might think.

First, isolate damaged boards, cut them out, and replace them with new pieces. Rent a sander from a local hardware store, and give the floor a good sanding. The last step is to stain the boards with a rich color, and watch your floor go from drab to dramatic in no time.

16.  Buyers love built-in bookshelves.

There’s a fine line between filling them with clutter and staging them to sell. The trick is to arrange neutral items in clusters. Make sure that no single accessory stands out too much. That way, you’ll show off your attractive built-ins, and not your personal belongings.

17.  Curb appeal is vital to attracting buyers.

Here is how to stop traffic using color. First, with two tones of paint, add a faux finish to any corner keystones. Next, bring out the color of walkway pavers using a stone sealer. Plant flowers in bloom, and you’ll have buyers swarming like bees to your front door.

18.  A nice outdoor deck can be a big selling feature, but an old one is a major liability.

To give your outdoor space new life, first sand the wood. Cover it with a light-colored stain instead of paint to give it a rustic, grainy look. Furnish it for entertaining, and watch your open house turn into a party.

19.  Breathe new life into a worn red brick patio.

Do you have a red brick patio surface that needs to be freshened up? Here is an easy way to give it new life with paint. First, roll a light coat of paint onto the bricks. Next, lightly spray them with water and then dab them before they dry to give them an outdoor look. When you are done, you will have a patio that looks fresh and reels in buyers.

living-room.jpg20.  Staging rooms to show off their true potential is essential when selling your home.

Clear out clutter or other personal items that will distract buyers. Paint the walls a neutral tone, and furnish the space to show off how functional it is. When buyers come through and imagine themselves there, you can bet an offer isn’t far behind.

21.  A shabby wood-panel wall is not a strong selling point.

Instead of ripping it out, cover it up. Use wood filler to carefully fill in all the cracks between the panels. Then, use a sponge to wipe away the excess filler. Once it’s dry, paint the room. You’ll see an unattractive wall go from standing out to blending in.  

22.  Use tape outlines on the floor instead of actually moving furniture around.

Rearranging a room to stage it for your open house? Here is a tip to save time and effort: Instead of lugging the heavy furniture around the room to see what feels best, put outlines on the floor with painters tape. Arrange the room according to your outlines, and save your energy for counting offers.

23.  Vinyl tile is an inexpensive way to update your home.

Laying vinyl tile is an inexpensive way to update your home, but there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it. You need to avoid laying patterns that look too perfect. Instead, make sure to switch up the direction and placement of the tiles to mix the tones. That way, you end up with a floor that has a natural feel.

24.  Let the sun shine in.

Buyers love light and airy living rooms, but dark and dingy isn’t on their list. Open up your window shades to let some light in. Cheat some sunshine with a light-colored paint and lots of artificial lighting. You can never have too many lamps. Last, arrange the space with lightly colored furniture, and you’ll have a living room that brightens your chances of a sale.

25.  Stage rooms with one purpose so buyers will know what it is. Potential buyers are confused by extra rooms that have a mishmash of uses. To avoid this problem, first clear away clutter and excess furniture. Paint the walls a neutral tone and then furnish the room with a desk to stage it as a home office in which buyers will want to get down to business.

26.  Unpleasant pet odors can make a bad first impression on buyers.

We all love our pets, but unpleasant pet odors can make a bad first impression on buyers. Be sure to get rid of old carpet that can trap offensive smells. Replace it with fresh new carpet in a neutral color. Plus, if you paint the walls to match, your living room will look bigger. It’ll go from designed to smell to designed to sell.

27.  Pack up unnecessary items and furniture before you show the house.

An overpacked living room is a red flag to buyers that your home lacks storage space. Pack up unneccesary items and furniture and move it your garage or a nearby storage facility. Clear the way for a sale by letting buyers see your square footage, not your personal belongings.

28.  Storage space sells!

Potential buyers love homes that have lots of storage space. Since they will open your closets, it’s a good idea to clear out unnecessary clutter, and organize your shelves to show off how much storage you really have. Plus, it gives you a chance to start packing, as you will definitely be moving once buyers see all that closet space.

sold.jpg29.  Create a nice flow in your rooms.

Buyers are attracted to homes that have a good flow. You can create circulation by replacing square or rectangular dining tables with round ones. Cutting the corners adds room to this maneuver and creates a spinoff effect that adds flow to your home — cash flow, that is.

30.  Create a better flow in the house by starting with the floor.

Want to create better flow in your house? Start with the floor. Join two rooms together by using the most cost-efficient material in the book: vinyl tile. First, use a snap-line to create a center point between the two rooms. Next, the fun part — peel and stick the new vinyl tile down, and watch your kitchen and dining room go from old to sold!


Filed under Articles, Home Staging, Real Estate, Selling