I had the opportunity to stage a condo for a friend and new client last year. It was a last-minute project for me before we left for Mexico. It required a lot of hands on deck, the project was completed all under five days including professional photos. We had a lot of fun doing it.
The story was this. My friend was desperate to sell the condo fast. The tenants that had been renting the condo were moving out, so it was empty. I advise never to sell a condo empty if you want full value. The market was especially slow in this particular building so she was smart to know that it needed to be staged. She’d looked into staging companies in Langley, but decided to message me to get some advice first. At the time I wasn’t listing staging services on my website, but had done many staging consultations over the last 5 years.
I will tell you this first. I have three goals when I work with a client who wants to sell/ stage their home. Save money, fast sale, and it needs to be unique! In this case, I had three specific goals for her.
1. Create an opportunity to sell her empty condo as fast as she could as close to asking price and This in turn provides her realtor with a quick sale.
2. Provide her attractive savings compared to hiring a staging company within our city. (I’ll explain that a bit more further in the post).
3. Save her money. $$$$
I want you to know that I am not poking at staging companies. They are very valuable, but our philosophies are slightly different. My approach is merely providing an alternative.
My goal is to help you stage your home in a way that encourages potential buyers to emotionally connect with your home, which should lead to your home selling quickly and efficiently. Each home is completely different, and I feel that the decor and feel should also be completely unique to your home and to the future buyer and not a cookie cutter feel. We have ONE opportunity for your home to shine during a walk though with a realtor so every detail counts. This gives us the opportunity for every colour to work and furniture placement to work for your home. This allows the future homeowner to see the beauty in your home.
I asked my client to provide me the quote from the staging company. The problem with renting furniture for certain projects is that it can add up. The quote for staging her home was $2300 approx. for one month usage.
Every additional month still on the market was another $1200 for usage of decor materials. My main concern was being unaware of how long it would be on the market and in the end would it drain her pocket-book if her condo never sold, or took a long time to sell. She was looking at $3500 and she have no guarantee. This made me sad, and there just had to be another way. She literally had only one week to get the condo ready. Every day not on the market was money lost.
This is what I proposed to her and what I promised her. I could stage her condo for less money than the staging companies she contacted. I did this by doing the following:
- I purchased well made, high-end furniture pieces from Craigslist. Some items I was seriously tempted to purchase myself. I had to stay the course. We were leaving for Mexico in less than two months and now was not the time.
- I made good use of decor dollars within the condo.
- I knew she wanted a new sofa for her den, so I purchased a new sofa and we used it in the condo during the duration of its time on the market.
- I knew we could use wonderful things from her present home, all working well together to create a wonderfully creative space.
The items purchased could later be used in her own home, sold, or given away. She had the option to bless someone else, or make some of her money back, or receive some nice items she could use in her present home.
Here are a few photos of her space that we created in Four days. Yes, four days. I’d recommend calling us at least 4-6 weeks before your home goes on the market. This provides us the opportunity to find the absolute best for your home and pull off a really unique look.
Ok, let’s look at some before shots.
This was a very small living room so I first of all wanted to show that YES you could get a larger sofa in it, as well show there’s still a lot of room for extra seating. A rug grounds the space, and allows this to be a space of its own. I chose furniture that worked with the existing wall colour and kept it simple so you could see the classic simplicity of the condo. If I would have had more time I could have created a small bar area to show that entertaining is possible in a small condo such as this. I envisioned a young professional couple purchasing this property, so I wanted to keep it fresh, a bit trendy, but mature.
The owner of the condo had some beautiful art in her present home, so I took advantage of that. It was a real cost savings to her overall budget. This wall could have easily handled many more frames.
I think people fear adding a large table to a small space. I chose this table and chairs to show that a large dinning table can fit in the space, providing a great entertaining space which grounds the main living space.
I found these amazing white Bertoia chairs on Craigslist. They were worth every penny spent and I felt it was a good use of the budget. Again, the chairs show that you don’t necessarily need to add a tiny bistro and chair combo. I used dinnerware/ flatware from the owners home, kept it simple so as to not distract away from the home itself. Little touches like the striped black and white straws in the glassware make me smile. It’s in those little details, that your home will get noticed.
This is a great entertaining kitchen, but it needed stools and some life.
Now four people can sit while the host cooks, or it provides a great place to read the morning paper while having breakfast. Note: the owner of the home sold these awesome stools the week the subjects came off!
Here I added just a few bowls, wine, cook books, all decor that the owner had in her present home. Using just a few colors in the space allows your eye to rest on the stone counters and usability of the space rather than having your eyes drawn all over the place. In the future, I’d like to see this track lighting removed and replaced with a flush mount light, or pendants wired over the bar itself. Lots of options.
Anyways, it’s amazing what can be created in 4 days. I would have like to have more time for the space, but everything needed to be sourced, purchased, picked up from the owner’s house, installed and professional photographed all in 4 days. That’s fast! I know I felt relieved when it was all done.
All after shots by DB visuals. Thanks again for the last-minute photography.
Update! This home sold in 5 weeks. The owner was thrilled, and was able to sell most of what was purchased, or she ended up with a few more beautiful items to own.
If you want to sell your house fast, give us a call, or to find out more. We offer well priced staging consultations so you know exactly what you need to do and where to start! Call us today or fill out this contact form.
Have a fabulous weekend!