Archive for Short Sale


Lots of homes are listed for sale that are in need of some updating. I would not recommend a seller spend a lot of money on remodeling the kitchen and bathrooms. I do however, strongly recommend that sellers invest in some minor updates so that the property appears well-maintained and move-in ready. Move-in ready, one of the top “must haves” on buyer’s lists of wants/needs.

So what do you do when you have a kitchen that is still in the 80’s? Oak cabinets, tile countertops? There are things home owners can do to counter the dated look. With some elbow grease and sometimes a small cash investment, you can have your kitchen and baths looking great.

Tomahawk before makeover

Tomahawk Kitchen After Makeover

Real Estate Agents and Home Stagers cannot stress enough, the importance of a clean, uncluttered home. Make sure that every surface in the kitchen and bath from floor-to-ceiliing have been washed, scrubbed, dusted and polished. Nothing turns a potential buyer off more than dirty, unsanitary rooms, fixtures and appliances.

Tile Countertops: Replace or repair cracked and/or broken tiles. Clean the grout and if necessary replace it. Try using sandpaper to scrub the surface of the grout or use a grout cleaning solution. There are also grout markers available at most home improvement stores that come in a variety of colors. You may need to reseal so check with your home improvement expert.

Bathroom Before

Cabinets: Paint and stain is your best friend when replacing the cabinets isn’t an option. This home stager recommends not painting over the hardware. It’s best to remove cabinet doors and hardware for painting.

 Bathroom After

At the very least, cabinetry should be washed and polished. We recommend Murphy’s Oil Soap. This product cleans the wood and brings back the shine and luster. See the difference in this cabinet door? 


                Oak Kitchen Cabinet Before         Oak Kitchen Cabinet After

Pro Staged Homes suggests updating faucets, fixtures and lighting whenever possible. These items can be purchased relatively inexpensively but provide a lot of bang for the buck.

1-1/4 in. Hollow Cabinet Hardware Knob 25-Pack   Home Depot sells contractor packs of knobs for about $40 and 3 in. Satin Nickel Cabinet Pulls 10-Pack 10 packs of pulls for about $16.

Taking the time to make these small changes will net great gains in the amount of time it takes to sell, the selling price of your home and quite possibly multiple offers. Home selling is about perception and a well-maintained home is always perceived with a higher value!

Thinking or planning on selling? Properties staged by Pro Staged Homes average less than 10 days to an accepted offer and less than 54 days to close of escrow. Call us today and schedule your home staging consultation. You’ll be glad you did!

Proven results in priced-right, staged-home sales!



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Pro Staged Homes      Home Staging & Redesign      Los Angeles, CA      909-714-1149




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I was in Las Vegas this past week attending the Real Estate Staging Association’s (RESA) annual conference. Naturally i just had to spend some time in the casino playing the slots. I was playing Wheel of Fortune, my favorite slot with those free spins. I was playing at a machine against the back wall all by myself and the positive energy was flowing. I was catching that free spin every few turns and quite happy obviously.

So there I am, spinning happily away when a couple of guys come up, (actuallyI smelled them before I saw them as they wreaked of alcohol) and one of them puts his money in the machine and starts playing. On about the 3rd spin he hit the free spin. He won $25. He starts swearing and complaining and I looked at him and said, “You just made $25 on a $2 bet  (actually it was $25 on $6 since he turned 3 spins). In this economy how can you complain about that? He still wasn’t happy (and his negative energy also ruined my streak) and I ended up walking away.

But that got me thinking about my job as a home stager and what my business does for people who are selling their homes. Investing (yes, home staging is an investment) in staging your home can bring you a return of nearly 300%! That is HUGE. Where else in this economy and market can you earn such a return?

Most of today’s buyers don’t want to buy a home that they have to make repairs and upgrades on. If such a buyer does submit an offer on your property, you can bet that they will subtract out how much they think it will cost to ready the home for their needs and send you an offer that you won’t like.

Many of the homes on the market have been purchased by investors (flippers) who have rehabbed (remodeled) the property with granite, new flooring, fresh paint, new appliances and all the bells and whistles todays’ buyers want. Does your home have all these upgrades? No? Then how will you compete with the house down the street that does?


Pro Staged Homes Kitchen After Staging


If you’re home isn’t in the same condition as your competition you need to take a good hard look at what your selling goals and objectives are. Do you need a fast sale? Do you need to get as much money as you can? Is the lender breathing down your neck? If so, how much are you willing to invest in preparing and readying your property to obtain your objective? The old saying that you need to spend money in order to make money is so, so true and it especially applies to the real estate industry.

If your home doesn’t have all the bells and whistles and isn’t in the same condition as the competion, then you need to take advantage of every strategy available to you to make sure that your home presents in the best condition possible. Some preparations will be needed to just “list” the property, never mind getting top dollar or beating out the competition.

Take a look at the ROI (return on investment) these necessary home improvements will get you:

# Cleaning and de-cluttering ($290 cost / $1,990 price increase / 586% ROI / 99% of RE Agents surveyed recommended)*

# Lightening and brightening ($375 cost / $1,550 price increase / 313% ROI / 97% of RE Agents surveyed recommended)*

Family Room Before Decluttering

These are things every seller must do before they even contact an agent about selling their home. Buyers are not interested in properties that are cluttered (which makes them look smaller) and look like caves (too dark and depressing).

So now that you’ve cleared out all the clutter and cleaned the floors, windows, bathrooms and kitchen. You’ve had the carpets cleaned and every room in your house is pristine clean and sparkling. Remember that the house down the street with the granite, stainless and fresh paint? What do you do now to bring the buyers to your home with their offers?

I would never recommend that a seller invest in a huge costly remodeling jobs. But what I am advocating is that you take what you have and make it work to its best possible advantage. What does that mean? It means that you take that one final step to prepare your home by bringing in a professional home stager. Your home stager will go through every room in your house and advise you on where you need to invest in an upgrade, such as a new light fixture over the bathroom sink or a new faucet in the kitchen. Maybe you need a new porch light or a fresh coat of paint.

Pro Staged Homes Bathroom Before Staging Pro Staged Homes Bathroom After Staging

Take a look at what your investment in your professional home stager gets you;

Home staging ($550 cost / $2,194 price increase / 299% ROI / 80% of RE Agents surveyed recommended)*

You can leave the tiled countertops and cabinets but if your stager advises you to clean the grout or paint the vanity or buy a new light fixture, these are minimal investments compared to the amount of money not heeding your professional stager’s advice. Then when all the prework has been completed, your stager will go through your home and arrange the furniture so that it flows, looks inviting and isn’t hiding any features or focal poiints. Your stager will arrange all of your furniture, artwork and accessories so that they do highlight all the features and focal points in your home.

Pro Staged Homes Kitchen Before Staging

Pro Staged Homes Kitchen After Staging

Just a note, this house sold less than 12 hours after it was staged!

*The above statistics were taken form HomeGain’s 2011 Home Improvement National Survey Results. HomeGain recently surveyed nearly 600 real estate agents nationwide to determine the top 10 low cost*, do-it-yourself home improvements for people getting their home ready to sell. Results are estimated on a national average and may be higher or lower depending on what region you live in.



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Pro Staged Homes      Home Staging & Redesign      San Dimas, CA 91773     909-714-1149



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You Don’t Have To Spend Money Prepping Your Home For Sale

According to HomeGains’ 2009 National Survey and based on the 12 areas of home improvement identified by real estate agents in their 2003 study, cleaning and de-cluttering your home will Master Bedroom Before increase your home price between $1500-$2000 and will net you an ROI (Return on Investment) of 872%! Unstaged Master Bedroom Of the realtors surveyed, 98% recommend that their clients clean and de-clutter before selling. After Just tidying up, hanging up your clothes and removing uneccesary furniture and belongings will help you sell your house faster and for more money. Staged Master Bedroom And that doesn’t cost you a penney to do! Hiring a professional home stager may get you a higher selling price and ROI.

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The Financial Benefit of Home Staging

According to HomeGains’ 2009 National Survey, based on the 12 areas of home improvement identified by real estate agents in their 2003 study, Home Staging will increase your home price by $1500-$2000 and get a ROI (Return on Investment) of 586%! Dining Room Before82% of the real estate agents surveyed recommend staging your home before listing it for sale. Hiring a professional home stager may get you a hire selling price and ROI.

This homeowner used her family room as her dining room and her dining room as her family room (which was way too small). Home Stagers recommend that homeowners return all rooms to their original function. Staged Dining Room For this homeowner, we moved her dining set, hutch, planter and the mirror from the living room to the proper dining area. Staged Dining Room The room was painted in Ralph Lauren’s Vintage Masters Canvas Natural. We used the homeowners’ existing belongings and purchased the chandelier.

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What Can You Do To Increase The Sale OF Your Home You Ask?

Those in the know say lighten and brighten your home before putting it on the market. Unstaged Family Room According to HomeGains’ 2009 National Survey, based on the 12 areas of home improvement identified by real estate agents in their 2003 study, lightening and brightening your home Family Room Before Staging will increase your home price between $1000-$1500 and get you an ROI (Return on Investment) of 572%. Of the real estate agents surveyed, 95% recommended their clients lighten and brighten their homes before listing it. Hiring a professional home stager may get you a higher asking price and ROI.

Staged Family Room For this homeowner, we used all of their furniture and belongings to stage the room. We found some blue pillows and blankets that were not being used in a room upstairs and changed them out with the brown ones the homeowner was using. That gave the room a needed pop of color and we changed the accessories in the corner bookcase. The most simple improvement? We opened the blinds that the homeowner always kept closed. This makeover did not cost the homeowner one cent!

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Selling a Home? ProStaged Homes Top 11 Staging Tips

There are many homes on the market today and sellers need to do everything they can to prepare their homes to get the best possible price in the quickest manner possible. And the majority of home buyers are beginning their searches on the internet and they want lots of pictures before they spend the time to actually go and view a property.

Whether you’re selling your home yourself on Zillow or have a real estate agent, make sure you have great pictures that really show off your home’s potential. Your mindset should be – Why would a buyer purchase my home over any of my competition?

The best advice I can give is to hire a professional stager. They will work with you through the entire process, guiding you every step of the way, prepping your house to be the “star of the show”. If it’s too expensive or you’re a real DIY kind of person – at the very least consider getting a comprehensive DIY Report from your professional stager.

If your property is a short sale, flip or vacant you may want to give even more serious thought to having it staged. Staging has been proven to sell homes faster and for more money and that’s probably one of your top objectives in selling your property – selling it fast! You need to get potential buyers in the door and professionally staging your home will accomplish that for you. It is well worth the money you’ll invest to get serious offers up front.

So with that in mind, here is Pro Staged Homes top 11 tips for preparing your home for sale.

Curb Appeal

1. Make a Good First Impression – Make sure your home’s exterior is welcoming and inviting, paint windows & trim, add seasonal flowers, clear all clutter and debris. Don’t forget the rear and side yards.

2. Be Ready to Show – Your home needs to be show-ready at all times. No dishes in the sink, dust furniture and floors daily, make the beds and put the toilet seat down!

Updated Kitchen

3. Kitchens Sell Homes – Replace or update old cabinets & counters. Paint & new hardware works wonders! Clear off table and countertops. Everything should be clean, fresh and sparkling!

4. De-Personalize Your Home Pack – away collections, personal photos & unused items. You want buyers focused on your house not your belongings.

Updated Bathroom

5. Don’t Take on Massive Remodeling Jobs – Make updates that will get you top dollar. Fresh neutral paint, update window treatments, fix leaky sinks, clean windows, tiles, grout.

6. Have Pets? Buyers don’t want to see or smell bowls of dog food or litter boxes (especially in the eating areas) in your home. Take your pets on an outing during showings. And don’t include pets in your pictures. You may be preventing a large percentage of possible buyers from even viewing your home due to allergies or other pet-related issues.

7. Get the Right Agent – Find a broker who knows your area, knows the comps, monitors the multiple listing service (MLS) and utilizes the net (again, where most homeowner go to find a home).

Updated Guest Bedroom

8. Lighten and Brighten – Take down heavy draperies, clean the windows, remove wallpaper, change out lampshades, paint darker rooms a neutral light shade, trim shrubs that block the windows. Buyers want a bright and cheery home.

9. Empty Out the Closets – Buyers want storage, storage, storage. Remove out of season clothes and shoes and anything that doesn’t belong there. Make sure all closets and cabinets are neat and tidy.

10. PRICE IT RIGHT – Don’t play the “reduced again” game. Find out what your house is worth. Consider knocking 15%-20% off and you’ll be stampeded by offers – even in today’s market. It takes courage but it’s the single best strategy to sell a home.

11. Hire a Professional Stager – Stagers have an unbiased and objective eye and are trained to identify (not hide) any problem areas and make your home appeal to the widest variety of potential buyers. To cut down on costs, many stagers will work with what you already own. In most cases you’ll recoup your costs from a higher selling price.

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