That’s the first thing my client said to me when I walked in the door on our second meeting.  He was thinking I was crazy I could tell.

We’d met earlier in the week and I had given him a list of “to do” items – mostly removing extra furniture, decluttering and I was now returning with art and decor to stage his home.

These rooms look bare and boring.  I can’t believe this is really what home buyers want to see.

It’s a difficult shift to go from living in a home to preparing it for the masses to view. What do home buyers want to see?

How we live in our homes and how we market them for sale is two different things.  I’ve met very few people who can be totally objective about their own homes.  Homes are more than just wood and nails — it’s our haven, safe place, our sanctuary.  However, when home buyers come to visit, they don’t care about your haven — they want it to be THEIR haven. And be the house of their dreams  (not your dreams)!

Mr Client went on his way and we went to work . . .

using what this family had, adding some items from our inventory.

living room before home staging

living room before home staging

living room after home staging

living room after home staging

Furniture arrangement for home selling?

Furniture arrangement for home selling?

Using furniture you have in a different way can often be more appealing in photographs

Using furniture you have in a different way can often be more appealing in photographs

Removing small items makes a big difference when home staging

Removing small items makes a big difference when home staging

Decluttered rooms photograph better when home selling

Decluttered rooms photograph better when home selling

Can't do it everything when preparing to sell?

Can't do it everything when preparing to sell?

A few changes, like curtains and art make a huge difference!

A few changes, like curtains and art make a huge difference!

Do sellers want to see kitchens as we live?

Do sellers want to see kitchens as we live?

Or as they wish their kitchen looked every day?

Or as they wish their kitchen looked every day?

A picture speaks a thousand words and when home selling often can give potential buyers the wrong impression.

Utilizing a professional home stager to maximize a home’s marketability is a important strategy in home selling for 2011.

We were gone before Mr. Client returned so I don’t know what he thought of the changes.

I do know what the real estate agent thought about how this home now appeals to buyers.

Priceless.

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager with Creative Concepts – Home Staging and Contracting serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers stage to sell or re-design to live well.

Related Posts:

Can I Afford to Have my Home Staged?

What do buyers think of a staged home?

Selling a home in 2011?  Tips from the Pros

what makes a home look great to potential buyers?

My job as a professional home stager takes me into over a dozen homes a week and I meet some fantastically creative people along the way.   It is amazing to me the unique things people do, create and collect – a fun part of my job.

All too often I have to tell these clients that their hobbies are going to prevent them from getting a good price for their home.

  • The doll collector, whose guest room housed hundreds of dolls,
  • the former antique dealer who can’t let go of so many beautiful antique pieces,
  • the rock collector – whose every flat surface contained rocks, crystals or agates,
  • the quilter, whose fabric collection would be the envy of many small shops
  • and the scrapbooker whose papers, punches and cute items have taken over not only the desk, but cabinets, storage bins and more.
  • yes – I’ve worked with them all in the past few months and each and every one of them is killing their own home sale.

Sound extreme? If you can answer yes to any of these questions – your hobby (or lifestyle) is killing your home’s quick sale!

Do you have furniture pieces in rooms where they don’t belong?  Desks in the dining room?  File cabinets in the master bedroom?  Collectible cabinets in the guest bedrooms?  Is your bedroom, family room and dining room places of serenity where people can enjoy the space without viewing lots of “________”  (file in your vice – books, model cars, fabric, work piles, etc).

How much is your hobby costing you? If your home remains on the market more than 60 days your agent will probably recommend a price reduction of at least $10,000.  Are you sure you can’t live without your “stuff”?

Spacious rooms are desirable to home buyers Home buyers are buying space.

Collections and hobbies take up a lot of space and usually don’t photograph well.

Keep your “stuff” and I guarantee your home will remain on the market longer than necessary.

Time and time again I see that those who pack up their hobbies and get ready to move are able to do so. Their homes sell. Others who drag their feet and tell me they “can’t live” without these things for a few months have homes who remain on the market month after month.

When you’re selling your home, you’re selling a lifestyle too.

And don’t just stuff everything in your garage.  Get a storage unit, pack it off to a friend’s garage, or to mom’s attic.  Potential buyers want to think there is enough storage for all their stuff along with room for their cars in the garage.

The quickest selling homes in 2011 are:

  • Priced accurately
  • Prepared beautifully
  • Presented (marketed) well

Pack it up, and get ready to move.  Take a break or reduce your hobby to a small space.  It will save you time, energy and get it sold!

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager with Creative Concepts – Home Staging and Contracting serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers stage to sell or re-design to live well.

Related Posts:

Can I Afford to Have my Home Staged?

What do buyers think of a staged home?

Selling a home in 2011?  Tips from the Pros

Moving or improving? Creative Concepts-Home Staging and Contracting has the expertise to showcase your home’s full potential, stretch your budget, and maximize your time.

Professional Home Staging – Reliable Contractor Repairs – Beautiful Results!

View our website See our YouTube Videos Connect with us on facebook! Subscribe to our blog

Still searching for a great gift for your Valentine?

Pressured for a perfect idea?

No – flowers and candy will not be noted as original and spectacular.  Dinner in a crowded restaurant – not my idea of a good time either.

We’ve had some smart hubbies contact us for a Valentine gift certificate for a home makeover — (we call it room redesign or sending your home to the day spa)!

These homes are NOT horrible or messy but these smart guys are really out to save some $$.  They’ve heard or seen how a room makeover has given homes a fresh look and not cost a fortune.  They are banking on the fact that we’ll make the homes look fabulous and they won’t have to buy a house full of furniture.

On a day to celebrate love, what’s better than enhancing the place that is most special to all of us — our homes!

We’ve done lots of “room makeovers” this past year.  Clients have been thrilled and found the process so fun!  One client said “I’m so glad I finally gave my home the “spa treatment” and the attention it needed.  I never would have come up with some of these ideas and my friends are so impressed at how things look!”

Your home’s “spa makeover” is crafted to fit your budget and personalized needs, and can contain many elements.  For example:

  • Using your furniture and decor, our professional home stager will give your rooms a fresh new look!
  • Do you have a room that needs painted but paralyzed at choosing colors?  We’ve got beautiful paint palette solutions!
  • Want a beautiful space, but don’t have the time to pull the details together?  We know how!
  • Need some ideas on furniture, decor or updates, but stymied on where to start?

Make yourself (and your home) look good.  Skip the traditional and go for the WOW!  Sending your home for the spa treatment is something you’ll all enjoy for years!

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager with Creative Concepts – Home Staging and Contracting serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers stage to sell or re-design to live well.   Need more tips to help your home become more “lovable”?   Contact Margaret at stagingoregon@gmail.com or 503-881-0886!

 

Come Fall in Love with My House!

Most readers have heard of “speed dating”.  An event where singles meet each other for three to five minutes, get an idea of if this person is interesting, and then move on to the next person to see how they compare.  Those of us lacking quick wit or knock-out looks may be intimidated by this dating process.  Nerves may take over and all of a sudden we’re a wall flower at the junior high dance again.  Talk about pressure!

Selling your home in 2011 is a whole lot like speed dating.

Selling Oregon Real Estate QuicklyThis past month our daughter was looking for a property and sent us a list of 45 potential homes to tour.  “Which ones should I see?” In less than an hour my dear hubby had cut the list to five, these were toured and an offer made that day.

Lesson one:  If rooms look cluttered or dated or your photos aren’t great quality you aren’t ready to sell.  Never mind that everyone’s mom told them not to judge a book by it’s cover — they will.  You wouldn’t show up at for a speed date in your duds from 1995 – looks matter.

Declutter, update and have great photos. (Over 90% of home buyers shop on line).  May sound basic, but if you do, you’ll already be beating out 85% of the competition.  2010 studies showed that listings with great photos sold for more than listings with point and click camera photos.

Lesson two: If you aren’t fascinating, they’re going to move on. People shop for homes with logic – but a home that shows a desirable lifestyle and is easy to “fall in love” with will get more attention.

You may think looking good is enough, but there’s got to be more to hold home buyer’s attention.  Little known factoid:  The average length of a home showing is three to six minutes.

Never mind that you spent more time getting ready for the showing than most women spend giving birth to their first child.  They’re going to be zooming in and out unless you stand out as the best AND tug on their heart strings too.

Lesson Three:  You better have them at hello. Curb appeal, first impressions, call it what you want — but it is key.  Home buying decisions are made within the first 20 seconds of entering a property.

If the outside shows repair issues or is mossy and dirty, a subconscious image of poor maintenance is already forming.  Walk in the front door and I tell my clients this viewpoint is the “big wow”.  If it isn’t that way, we better make it that way.  More important than breath mints on a first date, your first impression needs to be memorable.

Lesson Four: Professional help is affordable and worthwhile. Sometimes we need that older sister to give us a few dating pointers, and maybe your home needs a professional stager who knows the ropes.

return on investment for home staging

A recent survey by Homegain shows a huge return on investment for $$ spent utilizing a stager’s expertise.

Thinking your home can’t stand the pace of a speed date?  A professional home stager has the expertise to transform ordinary to extraordinary.

If you are selling your home in 2011 — you can’t change the market, the competition or your location.  You CAN create a better presentation and your home will attract the attention it deserves!

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager with Creative Concepts – Home Staging and Contracting serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers stage to sell or re-design to live well.   Need more tips to help your home become more “lovable”?   Contact Margaret at stagingoregon@gmail.com or 503-881-0886!

As home stagers, we work with real estate agents and home sellers – rarely do we ever talk with the buyers of the homes we stage.  We know the sellers and should vacant homes be staged for sale?agents love the look of the staged home (they hired us – of course they are prejudiced!).

But what do home buyers think?

  • Do they think it is manipulative?
  • Make them suspicious that the sellers are “hiding” something”?

Recently I’ve had the opportunity to meet does home staging work for Oregon homes?several of the buyers of the properties that have sold.  They are contacting us because they love the furniture and want to purchase it or find out where to buy items similar.

One home buyer shared this story with me –

When our agent showed us this house we didn’t like it at all and knew it wasn’t for us.  It was beautiful, but didn’t appeal to us.

Does staging add value in 2011?It was not a house we wanted to consider.

When they first toured, it was white glove clean, like new and vacant.  The floors and custom features of the home are fantastic!  With spacious rooms, you would think it would show well.

Corvallis Oregon professional home stagingThe house was staged and they saw the new photos online while they were continuing their house hunt.  The new photos intrigued them and they came to view the home again.

When we saw the house staged, we couldn’t home staging by Creative Conceptsbelieve it was the same house. 

The house had a totally different “feel” and atmosphere.

We loved how it looked and knew we could make it work for us!

We never would have bought this home if we hadn’t seen it staged.

master bath staged by Creative Concepts Salem OregonYou might think “these people have no imagination”!  They must be young and inexperienced.  They were older than 60 I’m sure and had bought and sold many homes.

I know the home seller was skeptical about investing in staging – seriously wondering if it was just throwing money away.  Now happy with his choice to stage, he knows the staging costs were minor and key component of selling this beautiful Corvallis home.  If he hadn’t staged this home it could possibly still be on the market!

We’ve heard similar reactions from other buyers – having a home that appeals to a broad number of buyers in2011 leads to offers!  I confess, I see lots of bad staging – most that is done by non-professionals or sellers.  Want buyers to think your home is beautifully staged?

  • Avoid having a home look too “cheesy” when staging.  I don’t know many people that have trays with champagne glasses on their beds — this always looks odd to me.  Perhaps a laptop and a book!
  • Quality furnishing and decor give a quality look.  We don’t shop at used thrift shops and if you are staging, neither should you.
  • Don’t strip the home “bare” because it will appear too stark and not homey.
  • A Professional Home Stager’s consultation is affordable and can set you in the right direction so your home has the atmosphere it needs to get sold!

Want more ideas on how to get your home sold quickly and for top dollar? Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers “stage to sell” or “re-design to live well”.

Moving or improving? Creative Concepts-Home Staging and Contracting has the expertise to showcase your home’s full potential, stretch your budget, and maximize your time.

Professional Home Staging – Reliable Contractor Repairs – Beautiful Results!               503-881-0886         stagingoregon@gmail.com

View our website See our YouTube Videos Connect with us on facebook! Subscribe to our blog


Often some of the pesky little cleaning issues creep up on us and when it’s time to make sure our home is ready for a big event or put on the market for sale we finally notice that things aren’t as perfect as they should be!

One item our Oregon home staging company finds often is overlooked, even in the most spotless homes, is keeping the grout well sealed and cleaned.  The new sealers are greatly improved over what was available a few years ago (some touting a 15 year guarantee or more).  If your grout looks good we recommend cleaning it and resealing it so it stays this way (save yourself a ton of work)!

If the grout lines look grungy, this is a job that can seem overwhelming.  (I’ll confess – this is a job I do not want to do myself!)

Recently we had VS Restoration take care of a home that had a fabulous kitchen, but the dirty grout was distracting from it’s great look. cleaning grout makes a huge improvementHere’s the before and after of what they accomplished!

I think the difference is amazing.  This home is for sale, and now home buyers will notice the beautiful kitchen – not wonder how long it will take to get the floor to look good!

Our clients receive a 15% discount on services from VS Restoration!!!

They specialize in carpet, upholstery and grout cleaning and offer years of experience so you will feel confident when trusting them with your cleaning needs.  Contact them at 541-979-2525!

kitchen staged by Creative Concepts - Home Staging and Contracting

Other related blogs:

New Life for Worn Vinyl Floors

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers “stage to sell” or “re-design to live well”.

Moving or improving? Creative Concepts-Home Staging and Contracting has the expertise to showcase your home’s full potential, stretch your budget, and maximize your time.

Professional Home Staging – Reliable Contractor Repairs – Beautiful Results!               503-881-0886         stagingoregon@gmail.com

View our website See our YouTube Videos Connect with us on facebook! Subscribe to our blog

What do you think of the color of the year – Honeysuckle?

Announced by Pantone as the color for 2011 its going to be influencing what manufacturers make and what we buy.

Whether you love it or hate it – soon you’ll be seeing it everywhere.

Honeysuckle pillows on Etsy

Honeysuckle pillows on Etsy

 

Here are a few items we’ve found already!

I think these pillows on Etsy are darling!

These pillows would be a pop of color on my black leather club chairs – along with a throw it will add a fun attitude to the room.

shower curtain anthopologie

Bold shower curtain from anthopologie

What do you think of this shower curtain from Anthropology?

Love it?

Hate it?

I’ve seen some boring beige bathrooms that could use some aip and this might be just the ticket!

What a fun wake-up for a bathroom!

(I’ll check with my hubby to see a masculine view of this vibrant ruffled shower curtain — I doubt it’s his fav.)

I’m going to make my own lampshades and highlight honeysuckle in the design.

You can too in seconds – but that’s a whole different post!
(Sorry for the fuzzy pic-but it was so cute I had to include it!)

I paired the honeysuckle color white a chocolate brown here for this lamp.  I think it would be fantastic for a master bedroom – along with chocolate brown bedding and a pop of some ruffled pillows in honeysuckle?  Will look fantastic — can you visualize it?

Ruffled Honeysuckle pillow from Lamps Plus

Ruffled Honeysuckle pillow from Lamps Plus

My favorite is from Lamps Plus!  I’ve bought lighting from them online and been thrilled with the service and quality – who knew they had such cool pillows – going to order it next shipment!  This ruffled honeysuckle pillow is just too cute!

I know my re-design clients will be asking for new color ideas and honeysuckle may be the rosy hue they are looking for.  For home staging, limit it to color pops which will make the home look fresher and up to date.

Related Posts:

2011 Color of the Year

Give Some Love to Your Sofa!

My Home is Beautiful – Do I Really Need a Home Stager?

Margaret Oscilia is a Professional Home Stager serving Salem Oregon and surrounding areas who specializing in helping home sellers “stage to sell” or “re-design to live well”.  Moving or improving? Creative Concepts-Home Staging and Contracting has the expertise to showcase your home’s full potential, stretch your budget, and maximize your time.

Professional Home Staging – Reliable Contractor Repairs – Beautiful Results!

View our website See our YouTube Videos Connect with us on facebook! Subscribe to our blog