Tag Archives: Home Staging Tips

Finishing Your Lower Level to Sell Your Home – Part 2

If you didn’t catch Finishing Your Lower Level to Sell Your Home – Part 1″  please click the link to check that out. Along with the new bedroom and bath photos is gives an explanation as to why you may or may not want to finish off your lower level prior to selling.

This post continues to show you the before and after photos of my finished lower level. Besides the added bedroom and bath (on previous post), I was able to add 3 additional living areas. The TV area, the game/eating area, and my favorite…..the cozy fireplace sitting area.

For 20 years this lower level had been a dumping ground to put whatever we didn’t want to deal with at the time (you didn’t see the half of it!) and a place for 1-3 Saint Bernards to come in from the backyard and not have to worry about the mud and dirt.

As with the bedroom and bath, decisions were made on the fact that it is a lower level and will be sold in five years. Luxury Vinyl Planks were put on the floor for durability for us with Saint Bernards but also the the fact it is water proof for a lower level with a sump pump and walk out to a pond.

The flooring was continued throughout the entire space including the bedroom and bath making it one continuous space. The durability and look will be a selling feature as well. The goal was a budget of a lower level but a finished space that doesn’t look like a lower level. 🙂

 

Before and After TV Area (aka my hubby’s area):

 

IMG_2432

 

IMG_0640

 

IMG_2435

 

IMG_0649

 

IMG_2431

 

IMG_0646

 

Before and After Game/Dining Area (tough to move the big dog; her favorite spot):

 

IMG_2417

 

IMG_0658

 

IMG_2405

 

IMG_0662 2

 

The Hearth Area (my spot and personal favorite):

 

IMG_2428

 

IMG_0675

 

IMG_2423

 

IMG_0682

 

IMG_2421

 

IMG_0672

 

With the cost savings mentioned in the first post due to being my own general contractor, it has been determined that the added bedroom, bath and living areas will increase my selling price at least equal to what we spent; and hopefully it will continue to increase. Plus we get at least five years to enjoy it before we move. Win Win!!

So if you are looking to finish off your lower level to sell your home you need to:

  1. Determine how many years until you sell.
  2. Discuss the added value for the additional square footage with a Realtor that works in your area.
  3. Get bids from all contractors and vendors to determine the total costs.
  4. Research costs on ALL materials such as hardware, paint, trim, faucet, toilet etc. that may not be included in any of the contractor or vendor quotes.

At this point you can begin to make some decisions and move forward if it makes sense. My big caution to you: DO NOT OVER BUILD FOR YOUR AREA AND TIME FRAME. Meaning, there is only so much you can get for your square footage and don’t go all out and with a massive wish list. If you notice, I did not do any built-ins as I was not going to get the return on my investment within the 5 year projected sale date.

It’s a big decision but one we decided to make at this point for us. Be sure to bring in trained and certified professionals to guide you through the process.

 

Should I Paint My Kitchen Cabinets To Help Sell My Home?

Such a good question and one that I get at least once a week during a Home Staging Consultation. It really is something to take a hard look at. Questions to consider:

  1. How old are the cabinets?
  2. What is the price of my home?
  3. What is the current market?
  4. Is there a lot of competition in my area?
  5. What will be the cost to paint the cabinets?

I did a consultation for a starter level home in a suburb of Minneapolis. The cabinets were original and in pretty good shape but in a medium oak stain which is not what the buyers are looking for. Since this home was a starter level home we know that the buyer may not be coming in and gutting a complete kitchen right away.  They want a kitchen they can live with for a while until improvements can be made down the road.

 

IMG_0853

 

 

IMG_0856

 

It is a hot market right  now and homes in that price range are going fast but you also want to get top dollar.

I had the homeowner get a bid to have the cabinets painted which came in very reasonable. I recommended the painting be done.

 

Painted Kitchen Cabinets 2

 

Painted Kitchen Cabinets

 

Isn’t the difference amazing!! Because the cabinets were being painted they could also take down the decorative bar across the top of the sink that is very dated and add an updated pendant light. The home got a couple other small updates, was staged and the outcome??? The homeowner received an offer the first day with multiply offers coming in and selling for over the list price! Painting the cabinets paid off with a quick sale, did not leave any money on the table and in fact put a little extra in the homeowner’s pocket.

If you are selling your home be sure to get professional advice from a Certified Home Stager.

 

 

Do I Need to Stage My Home When It’s a Seller’s Market?

I know many people are asking that question and wondering if home staging is needed when inventory is low and homes are selling quickly. The answer may depend a bit but if you don’t stage, may you be leaving some money on the table?  Money on the Table

Let’s say you list your home ‘as is’ and you put the asking price a bit lower so you don’t have to do much of anything. You get an offer within a few weeks, maybe a few thousand below list but overall the percentage is still really good. Ok great!

But now let’s say you bring in a Home Stager, at the very minimum for a Home Staging Consultation, to give you a list of top things to do to get your home in top selling condition. She may suggest some fresh paint, or a couple new light fixtures, some repairs.

Now let’s say you are moving to your new home first and you are wondering if you should list the house empty or stage a couple key rooms with furniture. Will that matter?

Sold Sign

Let’s take a look at an older home I consulted on for a Realtor.  I did recommend some paint, a couple new light fixtures, new vinyl flooring in the kitchen and staging it with fresh modern furniture when they moved out. Here is the email I received from her shortly after is was listed:

 

  • Listed as coming soon 5/8
  • Active listing 5/22
  • 38 showings 5/22, 36 showings 5/23, 10 showings 5/24
  • Received 32 offers!
  • Inspection completed, now pending closing June 30

That’s 84 showings and 32 offers!!! PLUS it sold for $25,100 over list price! Which was over 10% of the list price. Unbelievable!

So yes the market is good. Would the house of sold anyway without staging? Absolutely.  Would the sellers have received 32 offers and sold for $25K over list without staging? We will never know for sure but I don’t think so. Don’t take a chance on leaving money on the table.