2 Quick Organizing Tips to Simplify Your World

2 Quick Organizing Tips to Simplify Your World

I love an organized home, and I bet you do too.
Home Staging Coaches St Paul MN
I am a homestager and room makeover expert in St Paul, Minnesota. It is my pleasure to help people create spaces that welcome them home. There is one thing that  I know for sure.  It is the small and consistent changes that we make in our daily routines that come together to make an organized home.

Sometimes it is the simple things in life that bring the greatest joy.  I find joy everyday from simple modifications that I have implemented in my home over the years.  Here are a couple modifications that I made years ago that just keep on giving:

  1. Storing my earrings in ice cube trays that fit neatly into the top drawer of my dresser. One pair in each ice cube mold.  Not rocket science, but life enhancing.
  2. A small covered box next to the phone in my kitchen. This box has my scissors, a small stapler, pens, clips, and post-it notes.  Everyone in the house knows that if they take something out of the box it needs to go back there…or else!

Why do these small systems provide joy? They make my life easier.  No more fumbling around looking for the mate for an earring…no more asking my friends, or my homestaging and room makeover clients to hold the line while I find a pen.  These two little things are consistently maintained and make my world calmer.

I am not an organized person by nature.  I have to work at it.  And I don’t enjoy cleaning. I know some people do, but it is not on my favorite things list.  So I have adopted a system for organizing and cleaning my home in 20 minute increments. I learned from the organizing experts that I can do anything for 15 minutes.  I have modified that a little…and it works for me.

If you are looking for more tips on how  to get your home  organized  subscribe to my blog.

I’d love to hear from you about organizing tips and tricks that you have implemented that make your life easier.

If you live in the St Paul metro and could use the help of a Room Makeover expert or a Professional Home Stager, give me a call for schedule a one-to-one meeting.  I will share my secrets, large and small, to help you create the home of your dreams.

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About the Author: Christi Bond lives in St Paul, Minnesota and is a recognized leader in the field of home staging and room makeovers.  She has been providing value added services to homeowners, real estate investors, and real estate agents for nearly seven years.

If you live in the twin cities metro area I would welcome the opportunity to share my staging, organizing and design expertise with you. I can be reached  by phone at 651.587.5887 or contact me by email.

I provide Home Staging and Room Makeover services in the greater Twin Cities metro.  Including but not limited to: White Bear Lake, Mahtomedi, Oakdale, Maplewood, North Oaks, Woodbury, Cottage Grove, Hudson, Hastings, Hugo, Forest Lake, Columbia Heights, Highland Park, St Paul, Minneapolis, South St Paul, Apple Valley,  Minnesota

To Sell Your Home Fast, Do This!

To Sell Your Home Fast, Do This!

Today’s Topic:  Home staging works best when the property is priced right and marketed by a professional.

When you saw the headline To Sell Your Home Fast, Do This!, I bet you thought I was going to say the most important thing you can do to sell your property fast  is STAGE IT!  Well, I am full of surprises.

Stage your home after doing these three important thingsReal estate staging is all about teaching you how to sell a house in the shortest amount of time, and at the most attractive price.  I do believe that staging  is critical, but it will be meaningless unless you do a couple other things first.

In today’s How To Sell A House Fast lesson we will turn our attention to the 3 most important things that you need to do before you call in the home stager.

  3 Things to do before you call in a professional Real Estate Stager

  1. Clean the whole house, and repair anything that is broken, missing, or in bad shape
  2. Hire a real estate professional that is an expert in your area and that can tell you with absolute assurance that he or she has a plan for marketing your property.  There are many great on-line resources available to educate you about how to select the real estate professional.
  3. Price the property right.  Listen to your real estate professional. The right price isn’t the price you WANT to get….it is the price that buyers are willing to spend for a property that is comparable to yours

So now you know how to sell your home FAST… You clean and repair it, you hire a professional to market it, you price it to reflect what a buyer will pay, and then You Stage it!

If you live in the St. Paul/Minneapolis (twin cities) area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.   If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

There are more articles about How to Sell a Vacant Home through Staging on Christi’s blog.

Is my Twin Cities, MN property too small to stage?

Is my Twin Cities, MN property too small to stage?

How To Sell A House Fast; Musings from A St Paul, MN Professional Home Stager (vol.6)

Today’s Topic:  Is Staging Just for McMansions?

In today’s How–To-Sell-A-House Fast lesson we will talk about which properties will benefit from a small investment in Home Staging.  In my opinion whether a house is listed for $98,000 or $598,000 doesn’t matter.  It will benefit from staging.

I am biased. I admit it. As a professional home stager working in the Minnesota Twin Cities metro area I would love to see each and every home that hits the market get staged to sell.

Of course some of that is self interest.  I am a business woman, I sell staging services and my bottom line would greatly benefit from home staging becoming a norm and an expectation in the Twin Cities community.

But, it is also my deep felt belief that home buyers are customers, and they expect and deserve to be treated with high regard and respect.  As customers we are use to having things presented to us in the most satisfying way possible.   We are accustomed to being marketed to and we have come to expect it.

As you prepare your property for the market place keep in mind that you are out to attract customers. Then think about what your customer wants and needs.

3 Things Customers Want and Need

  1. To be drawn in.  Most buyers select the properties they want to tour from on-line listings.  Vacant rooms or messy/cluttered rooms don’t appeal. No problem, a click of the mouse will move the buyer on to the next property.  Tiny vacant homes are at an even greater disadvantage.
  2. Assurance. Buying a home is a huge commitment.  No one wants to end up with a lemon and a nicely maintained and thoughtfully presented home looks like a safer bet.
  3. Pizzazz. A home that reflects us and the lifestyle we aspire to.

Stage your home for your customers.Think about this for a second.  If you were selling your 8 year old Toyota would you spend a little time and a little money getting it cleaned up and polished before presenting it to prospective buyers.  I would.  If a cleaned up Toyota could net me a quick sale and a more attractive price than a similar Toyota that had fast food wrappers lining the floor of the back seat I’d invest a little time and effort into its presentation.  The point is, the asset doesn’t have to be the most expensive option in the marketplace to deserve a little TLC.

Another benefit of me investing a little time and money is that I know that buyers will automatically assume that my cleaned up Toyota was given better care over the course of its life than the messy Toyota my competitor is selling. Because it looks nice, buyers will assume that I had the oil changed regularly, that I invested time and money in its maintenance. People that come to see my car will feel much more confident making me an offer.

Some years ago it was assumed that only million dollar properties needed to be staged.  But times have changed.  Younger buyers are entering the market in droves right now to pick up value priced starter homes.  This generation has been exposed to slick marketing techniques since birth and put high value on first impression and how something reflects their desired lifestyle.  A vacant home will not talk to this audience.

Sometimes a really small homes
needs staging more than the McMansion does.
Without props a very small bedroom can be impossible for some buyers to visualize as large enough for their bed.

Consider staging it to meet your customer’s expectations and you will find that your property will sell fast and at the best possible price.

So now you know how to sell your small home FAST…You Stage it!

If you live in the Twin Cities metro area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.   If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

There are more articles about How to Sell a Vacant Home through Staging on Christi’s blog.

Staging Your Vacant Property – Furniture Solutions

Staging Your Vacant Property – Furniture Solutions

How To Sell A House Fast; Musings from A St Paul, MN Professional Home Stager (vol.5)

Today’s Topic:  Staging Your Vacant Property

In today’s How To Sell A House Fast lesson we will turn our attention to staging your vacant property.

Sometimes selling and buying homes is as complicated as learning the tango.  Maybe you found your dream home and your sellers would not even consider allowing for a contingent on sale clause.  Or maybe you were relocated, or redeployed, and an address change was part of the package.

No matter how it happened you now have two homes and only enough furniture to completely furnish one property.  That makes staging your vacant home more of a challenge.

Furniture solutions for vacant home staging in St. Paul, MN

Here Are 5 Potential Solutions for Furnishing Your Vacant Property

You could move and take all your furniture and accessories to your new home. The issue is that vacant homes do not show well and can linger a long time on the market.  There is nothing to engage buyers and every single flaw seems to have a spotlight shining on it.

You could leave the furniture in your old place for staging and get by with just a couple things in your new home.  This could be an expensive option if you are moving out of the area, but possible if you are moving only a short distance away.  The issue of course is that you will sacrifice a lot of comfort while you wait for your old property to secure an offer.

Vacant Home Staging Furniture SolutionsYou could try moving part of your furniture to your new home and leave some behind.  If you have good space planning and design sense you can make this work. Truthfully, I have rarely seen this done well without the help of a professional home stager.  I ran across an article the other day about using outdoor furniture inside.  An interesting idea, but I am not sure most people could pull it off. 

You can rent furniture to stage your old home and go ahead and get yourself settled in your new place. You would still need to purchase art, rugs, and accessories to make the home feel inviting, so this could turn out to be an expensive option for you.

You could hire a professional home stager. Some professional Home Stagers will rent furniture for your home; others have a full inventory of furniture, accessories, art, lighting and everything else that is needed to stage a vacant property. I bet you think this is the most expensive option, but it is not. When you factor in the savings from not having to make multiple mortgage payments, and/or steeply reducing the selling price of the home because you left it vacant or badly decorated, the decision to hire a stager becomes pretty obvious.

So now you know how to sell your house FAST…You Stage it!

If you live in the St.
Paul area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.  I have a full line of furniture, art, accessories to perfectly stage your property. If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

There are more articles about How to Sell a Vacant Home through Staging on Christi’s blog.

Kitchens Sell Homes…Or Not

Kitchens Sell Homes…Or Not

How To Sell A House Fast; Musings from A St Paul, MN Professional Stager (vol. 4)

Today’s Topic:  7 Tips for Staging Your Kitchen

In today’s How To Sell A House Fast lesson we will turn our attention to staging the heart of the home, the hub of the home, the most expensive room in your house for a buyer to renovate…the kitchen. 

how to sell your house fast by staging the kitchenKitchens are super important and weigh heavily on a prospective buyers decision to put in an offer on a piece of real estate or to pass it up.  It is a room that is used constantly and home owners also know that a renovation can be very expensive.

Even if your kitchen isn’t ever going to make the cover of House Beautiful you need to spend time getting it in the very best shape that you can. You may be asking; why should I bother staging this old kitchen? Sometimes the goal of staging is to show prospective buyers that they can live with the kitchen for a couple years while they get themselves finally settled into their new home.

Follow These 7 Tips To Get Your Kitchen Ready To Sell    

  1. Clean it top to bottom. Clean everything, the light fixtures, the inside of the oven, the refrigerator inside and out.  This step is super affordable and non-negotiable. If your home will be vacant while it is on the market this step becomes even more important.
  2. If your cabinets are in good shape, but the hardware is dated, change out the knobs to get a fresh new look.
  3. Clear the counters of almost everything.  You can leave a few things out such as a set of knives, a coffee maker, or a beautiful cookbook, but mostly you want counter tops cleared off.  Buyers want to see lots of prep space and desire very organized kitchens.
  4. Purge the cabinets and pantry of out of date food that you will not use and you will not move.
  5. Critically evaluate the number of pots and pans you really need on hand.  If your cabinets are crowded, weeding out the extras in this category is always a good place to begin.
  6. Check for unpleasant odors.  One of the biggest offenders is the cabinet where the giant bag of dog food is stored. You might want to move Fido’s food to a sealed container in the garage while your property is on the market.
  7. Check on the adequacy of lighting.  Buyers want bright light in the kitchen

So now you know how to sell your home FAST…You Stage it!

If you live in the St. Paul area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.   If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

Staging Your Laundry Room – Stand Out from the Competition

Staging Your Laundry Room – Stand Out from the Competition

How To Sell A House; Musings from A St Paul, MN Professional Stager (vol.3)

Today’s Topic:  Staging Your Laundry Room

In today’s How To Sell A House lesson we will turn our attention to staging the laundry room.

I bet you thought I made a mistake when I typed the title to this post. How can staging your laundry room help you stand out from the competition?  Stay with me.

I live in a neighborhood that went up in a hurry in the late 1950s to accommodate all the families that were quickly producing the baby boom generation.  Block… after block…after block…of the same home went up.  Well, I might be exaggerating a little.  They did put four different colors of siding on the properties! I am the third blue house on the right.

Ideas about organizing your laundry room from Woman's Day

Laundry Room Tips from Woman’s Day

When I moved into my home I had an itch to make a beautiful laundry room.  I envisioned a place where I would enjoy being while I washed, and folded and ironed my families mountains of dirty clothes; A place where I could catch a little of my favorite show on a small portable TV; a fabulous location for wrapping gifts.  All of this in eight by six foot room!

I worked hard on the space.  I added a table for wrapping gifts, hung wrapping paper and ribbons from dowels above the table.  I could find stain remover and wrapping tape with out a moment’s hesitation. My TV was mounted on the wall; a folding ironing board was installed. It was grand!

Shortly after finishing my laundry room project I had the neighbors over for a holiday open house. Without a doubt, the most talked about topic that night was the laundry room.  Why? Think about it. All my neighbors have the exact same house as I have…I stood out from the “competition” because I had the most amazing laundry room in a three block radius!  They all wanted my laundry lady lifestyle.

I wish I could show you a picture of it…but that was eight years ago and it isn’t so grand anymore.  BUT…if I was selling my house I would spend two hours and bring her back to her glory days.  Remember, how you live and how you present your property to sell are two different stories.

Think about how you can stage your property to stand out from the competition and you will sell your property fast and for the best possible price.

If you live in the St. Paul area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.   If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

 

Staging Your Bathroom on a Budget

Staging Your Bathroom on a Budget

How To Sell A House; Musings from A St Paul, MN Professional Stager (vol.1)

Today’s Topic:  Staging Your Bathroom

Wondering how to sell your home quickly and for top dollar?  STAGE IT!  Real estate staging is all about teaching you how to sell a house in the shortest amount of time, and at the most attractive price.

Home Staging definition: (verb) The act of making a home look visually appealing to buyers. 

In today’s How To Sell A House lesson we will turn our attention to staging the bath.

Since buyers know that a bathroom remodel is both expensive and inconvenient, it is in your best interest to do everything you can, within your budget and time constraints, to stage your bath to appeal to the maximum number of buyers.

Bathrooms are very important to buyers.  At this stage of the game you probably can’t do anything about the number of bathrooms in your home, but the condition of the bathrooms you do have can be greatly improved with property staging.

Remodeling your bathroom for under $199.00If you need inspiration, or proof that a small investment of time and money can deliver amazing results you should check out Cathy’s  project where she details step-by-step how she completed a bathroom facelift in one weekend for under $199.  Fabulous!

Six Bathroom Staging Tips

I’m going to teach you how to sell a house one room at a time…today’s lesson is staging the bathroom

  1. Make sure that all the finishes in the bathroom match. If they don’t match you will want to replace the mismatched items.
  2. Put away personal items such as toothbrushes, brushes, makeup, razors.  Buyers don’t like to think about someone else using the bathroom.  You want them to be imaging themselves in the space, not you.
  3. Fresh towels and lots of them are always appealing.  If your shower curtain and rugs have seen better days replace them too.
  4. If your vanity is dated, or water has damaged the finish consider painting it.  A coat of paint and new knobs can completely transform the look of the room.
  5. Clean the bath until it sparkles.  I think Mr. Clean Magic Erasers are incredible.
  6. If the paint color is bold, dated or in bad condition take care of it.  The new neutrals aren’t cream and white.  You don’t have to go boring to go neutral.

If you live in the St. Paul area and would like the help of a professional home stager I’d be happy to help you with your project.   If you have questions relating to this post, please drop me a comment and I will do my best to respond quickly. You
may contact me by email or call me at 651.587.5887.

 

Home Staging SUCKS!

First Impressions Happen On-Line…Not Curbside

I bet when you saw the message Home Staging Sucks! in the subject line you thought something was amiss. If you know me, you know that I am passionate about telling anyone that will listen about the benefits of staging…..but here is the truth:

Staging Does Suck

It sucks prospective buyers that are previewing the property on-line into making an appointment to view the property in person!

Real estate professionals and home stagers are always talking to clients about the importance of a positive first impression.

Yes, it is a cliche, and yes it’s trite, but it’s still true. You only get one chance to make a positive first impression.

But here’s the twist

Not long ago that first impression happened when the prospective buyer(s) pulled up to the property. Even if the property didn’t especially grab them they would go ahead and tour since they were already there. Sometimes they discovered that the property had more to offer than they originally thought…sometimes not.

But today, over 90% of buyers will preview properties on-line before they even take the next step to schedule a showing. If the property does not grab them the instant they open the page they click the mouse and move on to the next listing. In a buyer’s market, like the one we are experiencing today, you can’t afford to miss an opportunity.

A staged property will make a great first impression. Care has been taken to insure that the best features of the room are not blocked by furniture or clutter, the lighting in the room is appropriate, the colors have been neutralized and attention has been given to considering how the property will appear in photographs.

If you want to suck in buyers and get showings booked….give me a call today.

Thanks, Christi

651.587.5887

For more information about The Home Staging Coaches services and pricing check out my website at www.homestagingcoaches.com