Tag Archives: selling a home

My Secret to Selling Homes Quickly

As a real estate agent in Austin, Texas, I am committed selling my clients’ homes quickly, in fact my track record is 39 times faster than the market average.  What’s my secret?  I stage homes using the principles of the eastern art of Feng Shui.  Using Feng Shui creates irresistible emotional appeal.  When buyers connect to a home on an emotional level they are more likely to buy it.

Feng Shui involves creating balance in one’s environment. Every aspect of a room affects the way you feel in the space.  Colors, shapes, lighting, and furniture arrangement work together to create a harmonious feeling or conflict with each other to create a feeling of unease.  When buyers feel comfortable and relaxed they connect to a space.  Feng Shui helps balance energy so the space not only looks appealing, but offers a sense of comfort.  I refer to it as the “Ahh! Factor.” 

My company, Balanced Living Properties has become successful by incorporating Feng Shui principles to create a unique model for the business of buying and selling property.

Before putting a client’s home on the market, I stage it.  I emphasize its attributes by arranging furniture, adding color, and creating  good flow.  I showcase the home’s potential, allowing buyers to envision their dream home.

Feng Shui  puts people at ease in their environment.

 Oprah Winfrey employs her own personal Feng Shui Consultant. Major corporations such as Microsoft, Citibank, Chase Manhattan, Hyatt Hotels, CNN, ABC, IBM, Boeing, ATT, Disney and Trump have also been finding the ancient Chinese theories about flow and aesthetics of space to bring them success.

In fact, Hong Kong Disneyland‘s main gate and entrance was positioned in a north/south direction for good luck based on the ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui.

Donald Trump said, “I don’t have to believe in Feng Shui, I do it because it works.” 

Balanced Living Properties takes a heart-centered approach to working with buyers and sellers, creating win-win-win scenarios and transactions grounded on goodwill.  Find more information at www.balancedlivingproperties.com.

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Home Staging 101 – 10 Staging Mistakes when Selling Your Home

Home selling is a science these days. In order to navigate the process wisely, take note of the following home-selling “don’ts.”  Homes that look great and are priced right will sell quicker than other homes on the market.

 1- Don’t allow the furniture arrangement to block room flow. Awkward furniture placement can make a room feel smaller than it is. Remember that several people will be in your home at the same time when viewing it.

2- Don’t overlook the front door. It’s vitally important to make a great first impression. Clean or paint the door, polish the hardware, and illuminate the entry area. Make sure your house numbers are fresh and appealing.

 3- Don’t use highly scented room fresheners. Instead, move to an odorless home or use natural air fresheners like fresh flowers, cut-up fruit, cinnamon, or fresh-baked bread.  People wonder what heavy fresheners are covering up.  Don’t forget that you can bake refrigerated rolls or cinnamon buns minutes before a showing.

 4- Don’t assume all home stagers are the same. Every one brings their own personality and natural abilities into staging. Look at their portfolio.

 5- Don’t show the home when it’s not in tip-top showing condition. You only have one chance to make a great first impression.

6- Don’t paint walls sterile white. If you’re going to repaint, use a color that is more appealing to buyers.  Warmer whites and warm beiges add life to walls.

 7- Don’t use quick fixes that have the possibility of breaking when  buyers are in the home.  Buyers will take it as a signal that there may be other things that aren’t what they appear to be.

 8- Don’t remove all your personal photos. Leave two or three out. Buyers like to see happy faces of the owners of the house.

 9- Don’t forget that selling a home happens via two factors: Asking Price and Condition. You must lower your sales price to meet what the market dictates. Buyers aren’t concerned with how much money you spent on it if they feel like they’re not getting value.

10. Don’t wait to lower your sales price. It’s best to move on to your next home and get your new life started.  Trust that this is a benevolent universe and you will be okay financially even if you lose money on the home.  Stress builds up during the showing process. What price would you put on good health and serenity for your family?

10 Decorating Do’s when Selling Your Home

In today’s post “real estate bubble” housing market, attention to details sell a home. Homes that look great sell quicker. The fresher your home looks, the more it appeals to buyers.

10 Do’s

1- Purchase the best quality carpet pad which makes any grade of  carpeting “cushy.” Buyers will feel great when walking on it.

2- Take the time to paint walls, trim and ceilings that are dingy.  Keeping adjoining rooms in the same color palette makes your home feel larger and flow easier. Neutral colors like warm white or warm beige are the best to use. I always recommend Barely Beige by Benjamin Moore.

 3- Slipcover mismatched furniture in a room that isn’t unified. Remember, the items in a room should relate to each through color, style, proportion, and pattern. If a room feels uncomfortable to you or “off” it’s going to feel uncomfortable to buyers as well.

 4- Test all door and cabinet knobs. Replace mismatched or inexpensive hardware for a quick update.

 5- Let the sun shine in. Natural lighting is a huge selling point and can overcome other issues with the home. Heavy drapes are in the minority.

 6- Freshen up closets with closet organizers to maximize storage space. Make sure that buyers can see the back of closets and pantries.

 7- Consider the appropriate level for finishes in kitchens and bathrooms. Buyers in mid-priced neighborhoods aren’t looking for high-end finishes.

8-Clean every surface until it shines.  Windows are important- no streaks! Consider investing in a professional window cleaning service to get the best results.

 9- Edit furniture and accessories in each room. Less is more.  Buyers want to see the home’s bones and not so much of your decorating personality.

 10- Install new light switch-plates Worn or out-of-date covers lack attention to detail.

 Next time…10 Don’ts! when selling your home.

Home Staging 101- Creating an Appealing Atmosphere

Home Staging is marketing. Staging allows buyers to see your home in its best light.  The most effective staging allows buyers to emotionally connect with your house and most importantly, see themselves living there.  Creating an appealing atmosphere in each room and in the home as a whole is vital to leaving buyers with a great impression.

Create atmosphere by paying attention to the details.  Important details include lighting, furniture arrangement, colors, artwork, accessories, sound and smell.  The details in each room should induce buyers to want to linger in the room.  Make sure the room is well-lit and welcoming so buyers will be drawn in. The longer buyers spend in your house, the better the chances that they’ll feel comfortable in it which ultimately leads to a sale.

Three Home Staging Essentials:

I. Accentuate the positive. Ensure that you’ve done all you can to call attention to the areas in your home that are special. Positive features can include windows with views of nature, an outdoor deck, or a gorgeous master bathroom. Accentuating the positive also takes the focus off areas that aren’t so great and will keep buyers excited about what is.

II. Create atmosphere in each area. Use strategically placed, high quality, beautiful items to help buyers envision themselves in the space.  The things you use should be comparable to the sales price of the home. Add items that will spark buyer’s imagination.  Helping buyers see themselves in the home is the key to selling your home.  

If You Have A Great View or Lots of Windows:

1. Create a relaxed. contemplative atmosphere.

2. Make sure the windows are very clean.

3. Keep draperies or blinds open as much as practical.

4. Create a reading nook next to the windows or a window seat.

5. Put something whimsical or beautiful outside like a bird bath or wind chimes.

 If You Have an Appealing Outdoor Deck:

1. Create an atmosphere of fun and excitement.

2. Keep the deck swept and clean.

3. Ensure patio furniture looks fresh.

4. Add colorful cushions to furniture.

5. Add an outdoor area rug or two.

6. Create a conversation area.

7. Place new cooking utensils near the grill, hang a chef’s apron nearby.

If You Have a Spacious Master Bath:

1. Create a relaxing atmosphere.

2. Add luxurious towels to create a spa-like feeling.

3. Add candles around the tub.

4. Add a new container of bubble bath and moisturizer(s)- don’t use anything that’s half-used.

5. Add one or two high-quality soap bas and an orchid or two.

6. Place travel magazines around the tub or on a table if the space permits.

III. Don’t overdo it. Don’t take the focus off the wonderful attributes of each area with too much stuff.  Balance is the key!

I’d enjoy hearing your comments or feedback…..

Home Staging 101 – Fresh Staging Ideas that Work

If you’re selling your home you need tools to present the best product possible. Attention to every detail is crucial if you want to sell your home quickly and for potentially higher profit.  You need home staging that goes beyond cleaning windows and putting out a welcome mat.

Home Staging is marketing. It’s about detaching from your home so that buyers can see themselves living there. In order to appeal to the most home buyers, you’ve got to de-personalize your home and present it in an appealing manner.

Picture this: You need to buy an automobile. You found the model you liked but when you went to see the car it had bumper stickers on it that you didn’t agree with, baby’s toys in the backseat, and fast food wrappers (from a restaurant you disliked) on the floorboard. Would you be drawn to that auto? The same principle applies in selling a home. 

Ten Fresh Staging Ideas that Work

1 – Make sure there are no visible nicks on your furniture, especially in the living room, master bedroom, and entryway. Paint or replace it if so.

2 – Outdoor furniture should be as appealing as indoor furniture. Repaint, clean and/or replace worn-out cushions as needed.

3 – Remove all family photos except two or three. Buyers like to see who they’re buying the home from and if they see a happy photo of your family, they’ll feel more confident that they’ll be happy in the home.  But too many photos will make the home feel like “your” home and buyers won’t see themselves in it.

4 – Ensure the first thing a buyer sees when they open the front door is high-quality, in good repair, and colorful. Fresh flowers are good -droopy plants with brown edges aren’t.  Place your most appealing artwork, rug(s), and/or furniture here.

5 – A few potted plants around the house is good as long as they are trimmed – no unruly ivy! Plants must be healthy.  No plastic pots either – transplant them to ceramic pots.

6 – Remove all outdoor flags. Many of my clients have resistance to doing this. “It’s the American flag after all!”  Remember, you don’t want to cause a negative reaction in buyers. Some home buyers may have judgment about home owners that fly a flag outside. And some buyers may have a judgment about flying a particular flag outside.  Why risk it?

7 – Don’t display too much of one thing. If you love cats and have a lot of cat memorabilia remember that not all buyers will have a positive reaction when they look at cats. Limit memorabilia to one item in each room, three items total throughout the house.

8 – Ensure every bed in the house has lots of pillows on it. Ideally, each bed should have two rows of pillows and a decorative pillow in the middle.

9 – If your garage is the messiest area of the home, warn buyers by placing an attractive note card on the garage door saying “Please overlook the mess, we’re getting ready to move!” or something similar. Prepare them.  Avoid giving buyers any negative surprises.

10 – Place candy or sweet treats for buyers in large bowls and make sure to refill before buyers arrive. You want to create a feeling of abundance and comfort.

Need personalize help? I offer Long Distance Staging Consults which are remarkably effective!  Check my website at Feel Good Home Design.

Using Feng Shui To Help A Home Sell Works

Feng Shui has nothing to do with superstition, religion, or philosophy; it’s about living in harmony with your environment through balancing energy (or “qi”).  When a room is balanced and qi can flow gently, you’ll automatically feel comfortable and at ease.  The flow of qi is essential to personal comfort and well-being, and your body intuitively feels when an environment is balanced or imbalanced.

It’s simple…when a buyer feels comfortable in a home it will sell and when they don’t the home won’t sell.

If you believe that Feng Shui is New Age fad, it may surprise you to know that the eastern cultures have practiced the art of placement for centuries. And now that Feng Shui has been westernized, buyers and sellers are using Feng Shui to buy and sell real estate.

The idea behind Feng Shui is to create a harmonious environment to support the health and prosperity of the occupants by placement of objects, use of color, landscaping, and the five elements – fire, earth, metal, water, and wood. The simplest way to look at it is that if any element is out of balance or missing, we feel off-balance too.

Every object vibrates to create a unique combination of energy.  Feng Shui helps home sellers create balanced energy which will attract buyers. For example, a white front door and a semi-circular front door mat are metal elements. To help the home sell, create balance using fire and earth elements – red or orange-colored plants on either side of the door or by replacing the door mat with a red or orange rectangular- shaped mat.

The goal of getting a home sold is to create comfort and appeal so that buyers linger in the home.  The more time a buyer spends in the home, the more likely they are to buy it.  To help buyers linger, you’ve got to create coziness.  Coziness creates comfort and it is indicative of a gentle flow of energy.  Adding earth elements like rectangular area rugs, square wall art, and window treatments help create coziness. 

In long hallways qi can move too quickly if you don’t have wall art, earth wall colors, or area rugs to slow it down.  The goal is creating slow, meandering qi.  On long straight walkways outside, you can stagger potted plants to change the feel of rushing qi.

In the current real estate market, home sellers need every advantage to get their home sold quickly, but it should be noted that Feng Shui it can’t overcome setting a home sales price too high.   However, Feng Shui will absolutely help the home to feel welcoming and comfortable which will help set it apart from other homes on the market.

The key to selling your home.

Selling your home this year?   As a Realtor® in Austin, TexasSold Sign, I’ve worked with sellers living in fear throughout the process, particularly in the current real estate market.  Good news!  You don’t have to let fear and anxiety take over your life when selling your home.   Internalizing the principles of trust, detachment, abundance, and acceptance not only change your selling experience – they will change your life.

First – Trust your Realtor’s knowledge of the current market conditions and accept the reality of selling your home for less than you may think it’s worth (particularly if you’ve lived there for less than five years).

Second – Accept market statistics showing the facts about home sales prices in your particular neighborhood for the last three to six months.

Third – Trust that this is a benevolent and abundant universe.  If your profit is less than expected, you will be okay.  You are always being taken care of.

Fourth – Detach from any emotional connection to the house and put your focus on moving to your next home.  Bless it and let it go.

We all have varying degrees of emotional attachment to our home.  However, if you need or want to sell your home, think of it as a commodity and not as “your home.”  You can carry the memories you’ve made there to your next home if you choose to.

For most of us, “our home” really never is “our home” because it’s owned by the mortgage company. 

Trust, Accept, and Detachment WILL change your life and will absolutely change your selling experience.