Tag Archives: first impression

Home Staging 101 – Paying Attention to Outside Details Pays Off

Selling your home?  To enjoy the highest price and the quickest sale possible remember that every detail of your home’s appearance is important.  Buyers are possibly making the biggest investment they’ll ever make.  They want to make sure they’re making a good choice.  The key to creating an appealing home is to pay attention to every detail.  If you’re not typically detail-oriented and haven’t noticed things like cobwebs in the corner of your front porch or chipped paint on a door frame, you’ll benefit from getting another pair of eyes to help you.  Sometimes we’re simply not able to see all the flaws a buyer might notice.

The most important thing to remember is that you only have one chance to make a good impression.  Once an impression is made and first impressions are made within seconds the buyer will either be excited about the house or will be hesitant.

The very first impression a buyer gets is driving up to your home and walking to the front door.  Here are ten important details to address outside your home:

1- The yard needs to be in pristine condition.  This means grass mowed, flower beds weeded, and all dead plants removed or cut down.

2- If your home needs exterior painting, get it painted.  If you have a wood deck, get it power washed.  Clean your gutters. Certain types of roofs can be power washed.

3- Whether your mailbox is on the street or on your front porch, ensure that it’s clean.  Replace it if it’s old and worn.  Don’t leave your mail in sight waiting to be picked up. Buyers need to be able to see themselves in the home and if they see your  mail it may hinder their vision.

4- Regardless of the size of your yard make sure that the front of the house has color.  The best colors to perk interest are fire colors – red, orange, purple, and pink.  Add color by planting flowers in beds and in pots placed on either side of the front door.  Ensure the pots are look new. 

5- Clean your front door thoroughly.  Consider changing the hardware and kick-plate if they are tired-looking.

6- Place a thick, colorful welcoming door mat outside the front door.  It needs to be in perfect condition.  Fire colors in the mat are helpful – especially if your front door is beaten-up.  The doormat will divert a buyer’s attention from the door.  Avoid personalized doormats.  Remember that you’re trying to appeal to all buyers and if you have a mat with an expression like “Wipe Your Paws” you may turn off people that don’t like pets. 

7- If space allows, create a vignette with patio furniture or add a porch swing to help buyers imagine themselves sitting outside. Remove any patio furniture that isn’t in mint condition.  Oftentimes, patio furniture can be spray painted to look fresh.

8- Clean the windows and sweep the front porch.

9- A winding pathway to the street is the most desirable but if you have a straight path to the front door put potted plants on either side or plant flowers on either side to create more of a natural feel.

10- If practical, place a fountain in the front yard or by the front door to add energy, character, and a sense of peacefulness.  One of the easiest ways to is to buy a bubbling fountain in a large ceramic pot and place convenient to an outdoor electrical outlet.

And if you’re not selling a home, use these ideas to improve your enjoyment of your home while you’re living in it!

My Job is to Help Home Sellers and Now I am One.

Buy our home in Austin!

We decided to be proactive about our finances and decided that selling our home was the best solution to our current economic state.  My partner David never really felt like our three-year old home was “home.”   I did, but I also succumbed to the facts about how much money we were spending versus how much we were earning.  In light of the recent real estate downmarket it seemed like in an instant we went from having lots of business to almost no business.  I’d been hearing about how bad things were in other places and how little business other Realtors®  had but that was not our situation at all until it was our situation.  Along with last year’s dramatic stock market losses we suddenly found ourselves in a pickle neither of us planned for.

It was a  tough two weeks of physical labor and 15-hour days spent decluttering, moving furniture, cleaning, packing, and even holding a garage sale (which I vow never to do again) to ensure that our home was balanced, beautiful, and shining.  As the echo of  the mantra I use with clients rang in my ears….you only have ten seconds to create a great first impression, I looked for every detail in my home that I could improve upon.  Since my job is selling other people’s homes and staging them using Feng Shui, I wanted to use every staging idea I had and implement every Feng Shui treatment I knew.

That part is done.  Our home went on the market four days ago.  I expected to have at least one call by now but it’s been very quiet. Looks like we’ll get to experience first-had what other sellers in Austin and lots of places are seeing which is a scarcity of buyers.  Hmm… maybe tomorrow?  Now my mantra is… it only takes one person to buy your home.   I’ll keep you posted.

Ten Easy Ways to Create a Great First Impression when Selling your Home.


Selling your home?  Did you know that it takes a home buyer only ten seconds to form a first impression?  Ensure your home creates a positive first impression and makes a buyer happy by applying these ten simple suggestions based on art and science of Feng Shui.  It’s your attention to the details that will help your home outshine the competition. 

Keep personal messages to a minimum when selling your home.

The front door and door mat greatly influence a buyer's first impression of your home.

1- Remove dead plants in the front yard.

 2- Add colorful flowers to flower beds or plant flowers in terracotta pots and place in sparse areas of your yard.

 3- When looking at the front yard from the street, ensure that each side of the yard is balanced with landscaping or yard furniture.

 4- Keep your pathway free of debris.  Sweep daily.

 5- Keep the front door sparkling clean and repaint it if necessary. 

 6- If your front door mat is more than a couple weeks old, replace it with a new colorful mat.  It’s best not to have personal sentiments on it, except for things like “welcome” or “glad you’re here.”

 7- Potted flowers on each side of the doorway are welcoming but ensure that the leaves are rounded…no cactus!

 8- Wipe off patio furniture daily and remove cobwebs from underneath overhangs.

 9-Powerwash your home if practical.

 10- A yard ornament with a cheerful message can help create a positive impression, but avoid personal messages.

So after checking off this list, you’ve got a buyer excited about your home and eager to see more, congratulations!  Stay tuned for information about the next “first impression” — what happens when a buyer steps inside.