What is it that draws us to before and after’s so much? There is something uplifting about looking at a project that seems overwhelming, maybe even impossible, and seeing it transformed with new energy and purpose.
That is what we love so much about helping our clients transform their homes. Of course, it’s the cherry on top when the process results in our listings selling for much more money and putting extra dollars in our clients pockets!
One of our most recent projects was this fun Latona listing. The home was being rented by a group of room mates and it needed a major overhaul to unveil the beauty that was hiding within. Before we worked our magic, the home was cluttered and dark. There was way too much furniture and it was placed in areas that inhibited flow.
When a home feels light and airy, it helps us to feel calm. Since we want our homes to feel like a sanctuary, this is an important emotion we want prospective buyers to experience when they walk through our listings. Here is how we transformed this home to show off its best features and create a calm, enjoyable experience for buyers.
Paint is one of the single most important things to address. It sets the mood for the entire space. If the paint is too dark or if the color is not suitable, it can convey the wrong message and make a room feel much smaller than it actually is. Fortunately, for the amount of impact it makes, it is also one of the least expensive things you can do.
In this listing, we lightened all the walls to an off white color. Because the home was built in 1960, the ceilings are lower and although the rooms are fairly large, they are somewhat disconnected. This near white color on both the ceilings and walls gave the illusion of taller space and also enhanced the size of the room. Keeping the color consistent throughout the entire home gave it a better overall flow.
This living room had way too much furniture. The massive fireplace is oddly shape and it juts out into the room, taking up precious floor space. In most cases, we love fireplaces! But the size and style of this one just didn’t work for the home. As much as we would have loved to remodel it, that wouldn’t have been cost effective. The name of the game with our transformations is to spend the least amount of money for the most payoff. Since the design of this fireplace gives the room a narrow footprint, it was important to keep the furniture minimal and also use pieces that were more petite in size. This opened up the room to feel larger. We used bold pieces that took the spotlight and brought attention away from the elephant in the room—the huge, oddly shaped fireplace.
We have no idea what purpose a rug played in being hung over the French doors to this room, but it was hiding one of the best features of the home. Double glass French doors opened up to a generous space beyond. Because this room sits right off the entry and living area, opening up the doors made the entire main floor feel much bigger and brighter. Now when you walk in the home, you get a much more energizing feeling and it also made our smallish living room feel much bigger! Adding a desk and modern console showed buyers that this room worked great as an extension to the living room or played double duty as a library or office retreat.
The kitchen had been remodeled but it was quite long ago. The Corian countertop isn’t really in style, but the neutral color worked. It would’ve cost far too much to update the counters and we felt that because they were still neutral, just a few small changes could modernize this space. The appliances were old and tired so the seller brought in new stainless steel pieces including a higher end stove. By updating the appliances, fixing a crack in the counter, and bringing in a few minimal pieces, this kitchen feels stylish and shows off an expansive amount of space by removing unnecessary clutter.
Flooring takes a close second to painting when it comes to huge impact for the least amount of cost. If the flooring is in poor condition or the carpet is dirty and dingy, it doesn’t really matter how much staging and work we put into the home. Bad flooring will offset beautiful design. It can make buyers feel that the home was not lovingly cared for and that there is much more work to do than there actually is. These types of impressions can make a buyer look elsewhere for a home or offer a much lower price than it would have cost to replace or repair flooring.
This home has hardwood flooring throughout the main level. Even though they were in need of repair, that is the beauty of having hardwood floors. Restoring them back to their natural beauty is not too expensive and adds more value to the home.
This basement was a hodgepodge of rooms lacking a clear purpose. Half the basement had cement floors, no trim work, and no lighting, so it technically was unfinished. Adding carpet and trim, then hiring an electrician to run electrical and add lightning increased the value to the home significantly because it added finished square footage for very minimal cost. Let us break this down a bit. The unfinished area was about 600 square feet. Our sale price netted the seller $394 per square foot. 600 square feet multiplied by $394/square foot equals $236,400! Yes, we think the minimal cost of carpet, trim and some electrical made this well worth it for our seller! This was worth a team high-five!
We’ll admit, we had a lot of fun with this project and we were thrilled the seller was open to making these changes. The end result was a home that we were able to list for a much higher price than if the seller did nothing. We were even more thrilled when it resulted in a sales price $45,500 over the asking price in just 33 hours!
What do you feel made the most impact in this transformation? We welcome your comments below. And don’t forget, if you are thinking of selling a home, we’d love to offer a complimentary consultation to help you determine small changes that can help you get the most money when you sell.