Super Simple Steps YOU Can Implement Before Photos – Tricks From Our Verbal Consultation

Whether you are a Luxury Realtor that wants to give your clients the best customer experience, or if you are a homeowner who understands the value of online marketing and how it can assist you in selling your property faster and for more money, this information could save you time and money! 

Depersonalize – You have to take the YOU out of the property. As soon as you decide to sell, it is no longer your home, it is someone else’s future house! Remove any pictures frames, monograms, or personal achievements.  It will help the buyer’s visualize there personal items in the space and create and emotional attachment, which could lead to an offer!

Simplify – Keep things clean, organized and visually simple so their eye can graze over your items and focus in on the property itself. What do I mean by visually simple? Keep that nightstand clear. Have a lamp with maybe a couple books and tuck the rest away. Remove all the remote controls and items from your coffee table. Keep your counters tops free of appliances and daily use items.  The kitchen is the heart of the home and where you want buyer’s to get attached.  On the ends and in the corner place simple greenery such as grass or simple decor to pull in color and texture. What do you do with all the rest of your must have items?  Simply tuck them away in a pantry or cabinet for the photos and pull them out for daily use, it’s your online marketing that will bring buyers to your property!

Take A Step Back – As you are prepping your property for online photos, one of the most difficult things is how do the spaces look individually and how do they present as a whole story.  Your online marketing will tell a story to potential buyers.  If they like the story, they will want to schedule a physical visit to experience the story in person.  One trick we suggest is to take a step back. A physical step. Stop focusing in on one task at a time and look at the space as a whole. As the house as a whole. Our eyes are drawn to areas of clutter. Focus on what you first notice when you enter a room. Do you really need every single book in that bookshelf out? Most likely not. So go ahead and get a head start on boxing up that area. In the office above, we removed all the extra boxes and books and simplified the accessories on the bookcase and desk. When looking at the space from a step back, we cleaned up the number of lines that your eye could get caught on. Also, by looking from a further distance you can now see that the items on the shelves should be centered in the glass panel openings, rather than centered each shelf which would leave the focus in the seam where the two doors meet. 

Baskets – A quick solution to hide anything that you still need in order to function in the space on a daily basis, but want to hid for photos and showings is baskets. Typically I would recommend ones with a lid. That way you can do a quick pick up of the space and place whatever you want inside and no one will ever see the chaos! In this office, we statically used an open top basket with wood handles. The warm gray tones paired nicely against the back of the shelf, while the woven texture brought in a soft visual element.

Bring In Interest – When you take that step back and look at the space as a whole, don’t be afraid to switch things up. Bring in some new pieces, or switch out pieces with some from another room if possible. In this office we switched out the desk chair. The black on black was just too hard. By softening up set up with color and materials, along with simplifying the lines of the chair, we were able to add more resting points for the eye.

Visual Balance – One big difference in the before and after photos that you might notice is the addition of a piece of artwork. Two reasons for this added visual. One reason was to draw the focus back to the function of the space, the desk. One of the first pieces of furniture that you should think of when you think of an office should be a desk. You want to draw attention to that initial thought. The second reason though is to visually balance the physical size of the cabinet. With just the cabinet on the left and the desk on the right, there is more “filled” space on the left. By bringing in a piece of artwork above the desk, the balance is restored.

*Note – Normally we would actually hang the artwork, but for this demonstration we were not allowed to fix anything to the walls. Therefore, we just leaned the piece of art against the wall.

Let Function Show – Function, function, function.  As a professional luxury stager, I know not to  sacrifice the function of the space in order to create a false visual design, for example hanging a tv where there is not cable jack or outlet.  There are definitely cases where I might change the function to obtain a better flow with the design, but you cannot sacrifice the function. One small detail that you will notice is the placement of the table lamp switching from the right hand side of the desk to the left. Why you might ask? If you zoom in above the desk on the right side you will notice a light switch. By having the lamp originally on the right hand, you would cause a buyer to awkwardly go between the shade and switch to turn on the light. Avoid any awkward situations.

Be Timeless – If you are listing your home during a specific season, or holiday, you do not want your listing photos to reflect it. These little touches will instantly date the time that your listing hit the market. For example, if you decided to list your property in December, and come June it has not sold, then potential buyers are either more likely to skip over your property, think there is something wrong with the property, or use it as an excuse for price reductions. 

Don’t make some of these common mistakes. Take the time and think about these astoundingly simples steps you can take. Or check out some of our other helpful Luxury Staging tips and tricks in previous Katie’s Corner blogs like How To Use Teaser Shots To Get More Showings Today! and Top 7 Tips To Sell Your House For Top Dollar. But don’t forget to check back for new Katie’s Corner blogs here for new staging tips and tricks coming at you twice a month! You can also always reach us at 515-986-1895 or if you need more info!

Until next time!