Painting When Selling a Home

Painting when selling a home provides a whooping 148 percent return on investment with dramatic results and little investment.

Repair any damaged interior walls by patching all chips, cracks, dents, dings and holes; then touch up or repaint interior walls with neutral color.  Wanna know the priority rooms?  Read on…

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Stage Your Home for Showings and Marketing Photos

Home staging if done correctly can provide a return on investment of 251%. Stage your home for showings and marketing photos by freshening a space, cleaning and de-cluttering, adding art, greenery, lighting and staging or renting furniture.

Remember the cost of home staging is always less than your first price reduction, which comes in the way of longer time on market and low offers.

Perception is everything when it comes to marketing a home for sale. The goal is to highlight strengths and to downplay home weaknesses. Dressing a house for success will appeal to a broader range of potential buyers.

Stage your home for showings and marketing photos by:

  • Decluttering and removing extra items by providing the illusion of more space. Too many items in marketing photos add a air of confusion, make it hard for the eye to see important details of a home. Unless someone wants a fixer upper, home buyers don’t want to purchase a home that appears cramped and lived in. Homebuyers want the feeling of new and fresh.

Dirty homes feel gloomy, are overwhelming and depressive. Cleaning a home of fingerprints, dirt, grime, stray hairs and personal care items will make those that view your property have a positive feelings. There is just something about the thought of taking a bath in another’s dirty tub, or sleeping in a room strewn with dirty clothes and cooking in a kitchen with grimy, greasy cabinets and appliances, yuk what a turn off.

Art is used in home staging to create visual interest. Staging artwork is different than personal art collections that are purchased to inspire memories and are personal in nature. Staging artwork entices home buyers, by creating style, adding color, distracting a view of negative features, highlighting architecture, focal points, providing the illusion of bigger, smaller, wider, taller and adding excitement to a space.

Home staging existing furniture or renting furniture and placing into pleasing arrangements and vignettes, help a home appear functional, spacious and welcoming.
Another part of proper placement of furniture is improving traffic flow, drawing the eye to architectural attributes, hiding flaws and creating balance within a room.

Although much of a buying decision is already predetermined like location, or size of home. Home staging can assist with curb appeal and homey characteristics of a home listing.

Studies have revealed that buyers first impressions of a home’s interior are:

Cleanliness, Clutter and Odor 35%
Decor 21%
Condition & Lighting 16%
Floor Plan 15%
Rooms 13%.

72% of home buyer’s first impressions and feelings can be controlled by the seller with the use of effective home staging.

Updating Electrical In a House

Updating Electrical In a House, ranks up high on the list as updating plumbing. In 2010 HomeGain did a survey of 1000 agents throughout the United States, the survey revealed that 89% of agents nationwide agreed that updating electrical in a home could increase the homes value up to $1500.

Home buyers assume that it costs much more to fix broken items than it actually does. The perception of broken electrical out weighs the real repair costs in price reductions or low offers.

Mentally when a switch is turned on and doesn’t work the homebuyer will start calculating the cost of repairs, which in turn makes a reduction in the offering price. The reductions are almost far greater of the actual cost of the repair.

Should you have some broken switches and outlets, by all means replace them. Older homes that blow fuses are not only inconvenient but may be a safety issue as well.

For some odd reason items that I find often when providing home staging consultations are broken doorbell buttons, broken switch plates and burnt out light bulbs. Another item that has nothing to do with the working order of the electrical system are decorative switch plates, which I recommend being replaced with the good old average, boring switch plates.

Updating Electrical In a House Areas to consider would include:

  1. An area that needs a three way switch, that can be turned on or off in two different areas
  2. Add a switch for a light that is turned on by a cord
  3. Add a switch for a fan that is turned on by a cord
  4. Add a multi-purpose outlet for charging a mobile device
  5. An area that could benefit from a dimmer switch
  6. A home that has aluminum wire instead of copper (frequent cause of residential fire)
  7. A home that has flickering lights or frequent blown fuses
  8. A home that is older than 40 years old
  9. A home that has a fuse box not a breaker system
  10. Update electrical for Internet and other audio/visual equipment
  11. Update original builder light fixtures
  12. The greatest return on investment comes from additional lighting
  13. Adding lighting to paths, patios and porches to accommodate outdoor living
  14. Updating old flush mounted lights with new LED lighting
  15. Dated light fixtures are an easy install that can modernize a home

If new homes and competing homes in the same price range have updated their electrical, to compete in the same price range you will have to make the necessary electrical updates or suffer the consequences of reduced offers or lingering on the market with price reductions.

Selecting Faucet Finish and Style


selecting faucet finish and style white gold

The return on investment for plumbing will vary from year to year and market to market. The importance of selecting faucet finish and style for your plumbing fixtures will add to your return on investment and increase your bottom line when it come times to sell your home.

As mentioned in my article about top 27 return on investments, updating plumbing depending on market can provide a 260% return on investment on average when selling a home.

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Lighting Size, Placement and Trends


Lighting Size, Placement and Trends black drum crystal



Lighting size, placement and trends both inside and out when preparing your home for sale reaps one of the greatest returns on investments. Simple lighting improvements can be as easy as washing windows inside and out and replacing spent light bulbs.  Othertimes you will need to make updates to compete with new and model homes in the same price range.

Refreshing the look of a room can be done by replacing old, dated light fixtures and ornately decorated fixtures that may not appeal to the broadest range of buyers. I typically recommend when providing home staging consultations that home sellers keep it simple and select lighting in a transitional style, which is neither traditional nor contemporary.

The great thing about transitional style is that it will give you a great updated look in a contemporary setting or a traditional interior setting. As for finishes, transitional styles are flexible allowing you to mix finishes with existing hardware, but if you want to match your finishes to your faucets and hardward, go right ahead.

According to the National Kitchen and Bath Association consumers are looking for contemporary spa like easy to clean bathrooms and kitchens with less clutter and clean simple lines, with LED lighting cited as an “in-demand” kitchen feature for its energy efficiency (which is another hot buyer preference).

Knowing what lighting size, placement and trends when you are updating your home for sale will help you obtain a greater return on investment. Keep these simple home staging tricks handy as a practical solution for any home interiors lighting updates and you won’t go wrong.

Lighting Trends

Consumers love out door living and revamping garden areas, patios and porches can make your curb appeal really “shine”.  This will be the first impression buyers will have of your home.

Lighting Size, Placement and Trends black sh

Pendant lighting in 2015 will take on the shapes of bowl pendants and drums (like the one above).

Chandeliers aren’t just for the dining room anymore and are making their way into spaces like studio apartments, attic bedrooms and small mother-in-law suites. The luxury market demands, dramatic, upscale and extravagant transitional crystal chandeliers.

Power in the shower continues its popularity as we head into 2015.

Silver, Chrome and Stainless steel have commonly been used in the kitchen but warm metals like gold, copper and bronze are the trend for 2015.

Lighting Size, Placement and Trends gold pendant

Image Courtesty Decor Pad


Lighting Size, Placement and Trends copper

Image Courtesy

Lighting Size, Placement and Trends bronze

Image Courtesy Houzz

Lighting Placement

Lighting placement, size and how high you hang your lighting play an important role in the over all look and feel of a space.

  • When hanging lighting above your kitchen island hang 24-34 inches above the counter top.
  • Lighting diameter in the center of a room should measure 1/12th the size of the room to maintain a balanced look. Measure your rooms length and width and divide by 12 to get the proper size of the light fixture.
  • When hanging lighting above a table the diameter of the fixture should be 12” less than the width of the table.
  • Hang your chandelier over the dining table 28” to 32” between the table top and the light fixture.
  • In a hallway a 7ft. clearance between the floor and light fixture is a good rule of thumb to keep lighting in line of sight.
    Lighting Size, Placement and Trend

    Image Courtesty EHow


  • In a stairwell clearance should be 18” to 24” above the tallest occupants head.
  • Hanging fixtures in the middle of a room demand a 7ft. clearance unless hung above a table or other piece of furniture to avoid bumped heads.
Lighting Size, Placement and Trends bedroom chandalier

Image Courtesty New England Home

  • Hanging lights in the bedroom and above the bed should be 7 feet or 6” above the head when kneeling on the bed.

    Lighting Size, Placement and Trends bath sconce

    Image Courtesty Crisp Architects

  • Sconces or pendants in the bath should be spaced 28’ apart and 60” off the floor.
  • Foyer light is placed 80-84” from the bottom of the chandelier to the floor. Center to the window and hang no lower than point of the second floor when the ceiling is really tall.
  • Table and bedside lamps should measure from the base of the shade and eye level from a seated position.

Lampshade Size

Sometimes your lampshade may be all that is needed to get an updated look. Follow these rules when updating your table lamp shades.

  • Shade length from top to bottom should be 65-80% of the base length. For example if your base length is 18”, the shade should measure 11”- 15”.
  • The diameter of the shade should be no more than 2” less that the base diameter. If you have an 18” base the width of the shade not be more than 16 inches.