Painting trim, window and door frames for an instant update

Is your home slightly older and sporting unpainted trim and window frames?  This can leave a home looking outdated.  Some people are really timid about making the decision to paint out trim and window frames, or even doors.  But it’s amazing the difference this can make to the overall look and feel of your home.  Painting out these items can make your home look years younger!

In the example below, a fresh coat of paint was applied to the walls. The window frames, and trim as well as baseboards were painted white.  The house has a much more modern feel to it now and the hardwood floor pops against the white.

before and after entry way

In this example, the doors, trim, baseboards and crown moulding were painted white.  The flooring was also changed to a hardwood or laminate, the ballasters on the stairwell were painted white, and the walls were painted a natural tone that compliments the flooring.  This homes entry way goes from old and drabby to new with a wow factor.

hall 1


Whether you can choose to roll up your sleeves and paint it out yourself, or hire someone to do the work for you the change will be dramatic!

Listing your home this spring? Beat the rush and get your home ready now!

for sale signsThinking of listing your home in the spring? You may want to beat the rush and get at it sooner. A lot of homeowners that had their homes on the market last fall took them off for the holidays or winter season.  Most of them are planning to relist in spring, or even sooner.  Listing when there is less competition can put you in a better position to sell quickly.

In Halifax, Nova Scotia we experienced another buyers’ market last year, meaning there were more homes for sale than buyers available. 2015 will also be a buyers market in Halifax. Having your home looking great is essential no matter what time of year you list your home, or what the market conditions are – after all you want top dollar no matter when you sell! Having it look great involves de-cluttering, de-personalizing, fixing minor repairs, and sometimes adding more up to date furniture and décor to really make it stand out.  De-cluttering sounds pretty easy, but many home owners struggle with this. After all you live in your home, and you don’t really see what is in your home anymore. Determining what needs to be de-cluttered and de-personalized, how rooms are best set up, how furniture might be arranged differently to make flow from room to room better, or to make your rooms appear bigger and create focal points are all things that a home stager can help you with during a consultation. And of course, furniture and décor can be rented to put the finishing touches on the home. Having your home staged can result in a buyer rushing to make an offer because they don’t want to lose it to another buyer.

If you have a vacant home, or you’re moving from your home into another one soon, and taking all your furniture with you inquire about vacant home staging. Vacant homes elicit no emotional connection with a buyer, and buying a home is definitely an emotional purchase. Vacant homes tend to sit on the market for extended periods of time. In vacant homes rooms look much smaller than they actually are, and many buyers struggle to picture how they would arrange their furniture, or worse, question whether or not their furniture would fit in the space. If you’re carrying two mortgages because you’ve moved into your new home and your old home hasn’t sold yet all the more reason to stage your home. Staging a home may be less expensive than you think – and better than a price reduction!

Never go it alone, always use a real estate agent! Start interviewing real estate agents if you don’t already have one that you work with. Find one that you’re comfortable with that you feel will work hard to get your home sold. It’s always important to price your home right when it hits the market. Pricing it too high will just have it sitting on the market longer. Your real estate agent has access to market data to help you price your home right.

Start out strong – with a great realtor, your home looking its best with the help of a home stager, and having it priced right from the beginning. That’s a winning combination!

Let me help you get your home looking its best before you list! Your realtor will thank you for it too – after all it’s much easier to sell a home that looks great and creates an emotional connection and must have for buyers.

Call me at 902-830-3170 or email me at, I’d love to help you!

The real question is…can you afford NOT to stage your home?

A home is most often your biggest investment, and one you want to see a return on.  When it comes to selling it, some people think they can’t afford to stage their home.  The truth is, home staging doesn’t have to cost a lot.  A home stager first tries to work with what you have available in your home. Sometimes just removing clutter or excess furniture, and enhancing the flow of each room can make a huge impact.  Even just a consultation from a home stager can be very informative since it’s important to be able to see your home through someone else’s eyes.

The average price reduction is 10-20% of the listing price.  So, that means for example a home listed at $250,000 would see a price reduction of $25,000-$50,000. OUCH…you’d have to agree with me that $150 – $2,500 to stage your home makes a lot more sense.

Furthermore, some studies suggest that staged homes sell for 3-10% above asking price on average.

Hmmm…so instead of can you afford to stage your home, isn’t the real question can you afford NOT to stage your home?

Conquering your fear of colour – allow your inner Design Diva out!

I came across this great article on House Beautiful about conquering your fear of colour. It does seem that people are afraid of adding colour, or really just unsure how to do it.  Many think you should only have one colour in a room. Do you have to have just neutral beige…nope!  Even if you’re having your house staged for sale, it doesn’t mean everything has to be blah and neutral. In fact the opposite, you want to add in a little colour and contrast to make the room interesting.

There’s simple design rules you can follow – the 60-30-10 rule.  So when decorating a particular room, 60% should be the primary colour to create the overall unifying theme, then use 30% of the secondary color to create contrast and visual interest, and lastly 10% for the accent colour to provide that final touch of elegance.

Still afraid or unsure…try starting with a small room and experimenting.  It doesn’t mean you have to go crazy, just be a little brave. Try adding in some bold throw pillows into your design. Heck, just keep your receipt and try it, what’s the worse thing that can happen – you return them? Or try adding a fringe to your curtains to add some colour.

So, not quite brave enough yet, still stuck on one colour. If this is the case choose one color, but incorporate many hues.  But try letting the inner design diva within you out – you may be surprised what a beautiful space you create!

Read more about conquering your fear of colours on House Beautiful