Beaux R'eves

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Home Staging: Before and After Series


I was busy this past Spring and Summer working on a lot of Home Staging projects 
not only for my own home but for my good friend who is a Realtor.  
As a certified Home Stager I have learned many tricks of the trade over the years.  
I thought it would be fun to do a weekly series of my "Before and Afters" 
and pass some tips to my readers.  
If you are considering putting your home up for sale 
this is a great time to start working on your house 
and getting it ready before the Springtime.  
As you might remember, we put our home on the market last Spring.  
Long story short, we took it off after three months.  
 There were only positive comments about our home but there were some external things 
beyond our control that were hurting our chances for a quick sale.  
There is currently a lot of construction in our area that is not very attractive.  
We knew that our home would sell eventually but we didn't want to disrupt 
our daughters Senior Year in High School having to move etc...  
I think it was a good choice for us 
and when the time comes around 
we will evaluate whether we want to list again.  

Anyway, back to the Home Staging!  
This particular home was fun because my mom was in town 
and she came along and helped me out.  
I wasn't able to see the home before we staged it.  
It's not ideal for me to stage a home without seeing it first 
and taking pictures but sometimes that is just the way it is.  
The realtor sent me some photos from his phone 
so I did have some idea of what I was walking into.  
Each staging job is different...  
Sometimes I bring a carload of my own accessories with me 
and sometimes I only use what the homeowner has on hand.  
In this case I used all of the homeowners things without supplementing. 

Let's take a look!
You can see from the outside of the home that it is a "Split Level" home.  
When you walk in the Living Room is on one level 
and the Kitchen, dining room and bedrooms are on another level up.  
The walkout basement is on the bottom level.  
This is the Before picture that the Realtor took.  
The room is cluttered with family photos and little nick-knacks.  
It looks like they were also using this room as a pseudo office.  
It confuses buyers when you have more than one purpose for a room.  
The room just looked a little tired 
and like they had thrown their "Left over" furniture into it. 
Unfortunately, we were unable to move the roll top desk.  
It was just too heavy and the homeowner's computer 
and printer were all hooked up. 
So we did the best we could with what we had to work with!  
I angled the sofa to give the room some interest 
and replaced the palm tree pillows with some more current pillows 
that I found downstairs.  
They  really seemed to brighten up the space.  
De-cluttering and removing family photos 
is always on my list of things to do!  
 I stole the palm print from the bathroom (which you will see later) 
 and centered it over the antique sewing machine that was previously in the kitchen.  
 The roll top desk got moved over (as far as we could) to the corner and closed for 
showings.   I placed the greenery around the room so your eye would follow from the 
lowest to the highest point.  It helps your brain to make sense of a space when you do that.  
Your eyes will follow the path which is what I want you to do.  
 I kept the mantle simple with three glass candle holders stolen from another room.  
  Shield your eyes!  
This is the kitchen!  
It was a VERY bright apple green with a LOT of clutter.  
This is the only "Before" picture that I have but I am sure you get the idea.  
My mom and I got to de-cluttering this room right away!  
My method is to take every accessory and put it in a central place, 
usually the kitchen table, 
and then use what we want to stage and pack up the rest.  
WOW!  
What do you think?  
Now it is a nice bright kitchen with beautiful cabinets and clean white counters.  
A lot of you might think that this is TOO sparse and simple 
but you have to remember that putting your house up for sale 
is different than living in your home.  
Staging is not the same as decorating...  
Decorating is personal 
and staging is removing the personal 
so that others can imagine living in your home.  
I kept only a few accessories out on the counters.  
My rule of thumb is three appliances max out on the counters.  
 I used the cobalt blue grouping because I felt that back splash and counters were blending 
together too much and they needed to be broken up.
Isn't this a cute space?  
I gathered a small checked tablecloth and placed the ceramic grass plant on top.  
I always try to think of who my target market is when I am staging.  
I was thinking that a younger couple 
would be looking at this house so I wanted to add some modern elements.
The Master Bedroom had some challenges; 
boring bedding, dark curtains, too much furniture and more clutter.
Sorry about the blurriness of this photo but I am sure you get the idea here...  
I found a new set of bedding that had never been opened in the garage 
and we asked the homeowners if we could use it.  
A coordinated set like this always looks more like a "model home".  
I switched the candles and picture over the bed with one from the hallway.  
The restfulness of the flowers works better and flows with the drapes.  
I tied the drapes back (with hair bands and a small nail) 
to let in more light.  
Soooooooooo much better!
I moved the end table from the left side to the right.  
It seems like a small change but it made the room look so much bigger.  
Of course I de-cluttered the dresser and placed a few candlesticks there.
Please put your sunglasses on for the master bathroom!  

Yes, it is bright orange!  
And there was no painting it!  
This is what I had to deal with!
Yikes!  
Even the ceiling is orange!  
Of course my recommendation would be to paint but people don't always listen to me 
Sigh!
or the realtors... 
So how would you deal with this?  
What would you do?  
I decided to use the "white out" method.  
I used a large white shower curtain over the shower 
and white towels on the towel rack.  
I kept pictures and accessories to a minimum.  
Green always neutralizes a space 
so I placed the greens on the counter and on the back of the loo.  
It was actually tolerable when it was all staged.  
The little girls room.
I would say that this is a typical little girls room.  
Coordinating bedding and drapes, stuffed animals, 
little nick-knacks in her favorite colors.  
Just a little tweaking will fix this room.
I removed a lot of the little items in the room because they are distracting.  
One of my favorite tricks is to use all white bedding 
and place the comforter at the end of the bed.  
Since I didn't have a budget for this house I turned down the bedding 
with just the sheets exposed.  
A prospective buyer can only tolerate so much pattern.  
It is much more soothing to see the pattern at the end of the bed. 

Clean, organized and cute!  
The powder room/kids bathroom. 
Not much to do in here but take the kid stuff away and clean up.  
I wanted to pull the shower curtain to the side but it was better left closed.  
The basement area.  
Lots of family photos on the two bookshelves flanking the sofa.  
The view as you come down the stairs.  
The coat rack full of coats is the first thing you run into.
Another view...  
Behind that door is a powder room and a door to the outside.
Staged, 
the bookshelves have been de-personalized 
and the golf print from the living room was placed here.  
It is more in scale than the smaller print that was previously there.  
I removed the green swag from the windows 
because I thought it wasn't substantial enough to go over the windows. 
Now it looks like a spacious basement or entertainment room.  
Done!  And in under three hours!
This house was not on the market very long before it sold!  
I know that it was less than 30 days.  
So are you interested in this series?  
If so, come back next week!
Until then,
Beaux R'eves,

20 click here to Comment:

thepaintedapron.com said...

Great job, wow, it is amazing how people can't see how bad their clutter is when they are trying to sell their most valuable asset! I loved seeing your before and afters, you did a fabulous job just using their own things! I can't wait to see more, I hope you will keep sharing~
Jenna

Christine Graves said...

Wow, with all the clutter gone it looks much better. I find it kind of ironic that sometimes I can see past the clutter what it could be, but the paint is much harder. Especially when people paint ceilings orange. That's a hard one to get past. LOL

Alycia Nichols said...

In under three hours??!?!?!!!??!?! Girl...there's NO WAY I could have accomplished all of this in that short span of time! You worked WONDERS in there! That kitchen almost made me lose my breakfast with all the clutter! And the orange in that bathroom???!?!? I like color, but wow....just...wow!

I think it's difficult for some people to realize they're not trying to sell the house to THEMSELVES. They need to neutralize the space as much as possible so that potential buyers can easily imagine how THEY could live in it. I have never understood why people can't get that. They want to sell the house, but they need to consider it just that at that point: a HOUSE rather than a home for themselves. In doing so, they can more easily let go of all the personal crap that chases away potential buyers.

Lord have mercy...you did a really fantastic job with this house! Kudos to you & your Mom! Looking at these rooms makes me want to get up from this computer and get my hips downstairs to make sure my house isn't looking so cluttered!!!!!!!!! :-)

Leigh said...

I love this idea of hints on staging. Please keep it coming.

countrymeadowsdesigns said...

Great job and quick thinking to get this all done in three hours. Clutter is so confining and stressful. Thanks for the your hints and tricks on staging.

Missy George said...

Great job Cindy..I would love to do that..My house is always "staged"..Great job in the kitchen..My house sold in 10 days and I did almost nothing to it...Great fun..

Zuni, Chickadee Home Nest said...

Really interesting post, Cindy. You did a fantastic job, and in 3 hours! wow! We should all be able to do that in our homes if/when we list it, but your arm's-length intervention makes it much easier (and quicker) for the homeowner Yes, a series would be great...how about also some insight into running such a business? That would be interesting too! Thanks! ~Zuni

Margaret said...

Wow! This is very impressive work. Non-judgmental about HO's and you just go in and make all the clutter disappear and it looks soooooo much better. Think you're correct - target market is probably a young couple and now someone will find this home very special.

Suzanne said...

You did a great job! The house looks tidy and uncluttered.

Lulu said...

Boy, when it comes to selling a home, staging is so important. It looks like you have quite a knack and understand how important it is to get rid of the clutter.

Sue said...

what a difference you made....I forwarded your post on to another blog friend of mine who is getting ready to list her house for sale. We discussed the other day how she has to get rid of the clutter and re-arrange what she has to update the look. It is such an easy fix but most people can not picture what it will look like....I hope your post will help her realize what a difference it will make to clean up all the crap.... :)

Carol said...

Wow, they certainly used some bold colors! You did a great job on this one.

Monica said...

I have to say...the kitchen shot I never saw the TV above the pantry door. There was so so much stuff and then with your staging WOW i saw the TV. I do my best to not have all the clutter and it is amazing how good features are hidden when you let "things" take over. I am not selling but I will be taking photos with weekend to see what else I can move or improve on room by room. Great post!!!

Shirley@Housepitality Designs said...

A great start to your series…I received my certification on home staging/redesign and loved it…do not do much of that anymore and miss it…wonderful results!!..they must be very pleased with your magic touch!

lala said...

Amazing!! I love seeing this type of before & after - from blah to aah - and with no money spent! I am new to your blog, found you via StoneGable. So looking forward to more in this series - you did a great job!!!!

‚Ą≥artina @ Northern Nesting said...

WOW Cindy what a difference...you did an amazing job!

Stephanie @ The Cozy Old Farmhouse said...

You did a great job! I've always thought staging would be such a fun job and I look forward to your series. Love seeing before's and after's!

Pinky at Designs by Pinky said...

Oh Lordy, this makes me so jealous. Our home has been on the market for a year. We didn EVERYTHING the realtor told us, hired a stager (who brought in God awful furniture) but we had to do it because we had already moved out. It is still on the market but we do, FINALLY have a contract. We are WAY below what we started out asking but at this pont are just trying to be DONE. It has been a nightmare. These people are vERY fortunate. All these paint colors are God awful. We painted 10 rooms a very neautral tan. OY!!!!

Sarah said...

You are a fast worker! Thanks for doing this series. I'm off to see Week 2.

Connie said...

You have worked a miracle on that green kitchen. The poor fridge looks as if it may fall down under all the clutter and pin ups. They surely do give off a messy appearance when used as a bulletin board.

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