Friday, March 8, 2013

HOUSE HUNTERS










Yesterday, after a week of long hours working on four staging jobs, I decided to share photos of one of the first projects I attacked in Garrison, New York.  I hope my description of the homeowner didn't come across as unkind, but I offered nothing I wouldn't share with him directly.  The facts were simple and if you look back at yesterdays photos, it is apparent this person was in trouble on many levels.  I shared them because I think many people are in similar situations today, where overzealous mortgage companies are eager to pounce on the weak, bills are piling up and it just seems impossible to catch a break.  Sometimes cleaning up, moving on and re-booting life is the best way to heal.  The example above (and from yesterdays before shots) prove that with a little work and next to no money, you can turn a profit..this homeowner needed a measly $300,000 to clear his debt and wound up with well over half a million dollars.  I chose to use a few other shots from the same home today to show how little details make a big difference when selling a home.  The top shot, as mentioned yesterday, was an example of black mold growing throughout the house.  I treated the mold with bleach and water (poured into a spray bottle), wiped clean, sanded then primed and painted.  The strange bright yellow room is actually the corner of a bathroom, so I pulled out the mouse-nest infested bookshelf and toned down the paint a bit.  A guest bedroom was filled with stolen street signs, painted pink and littered with plates of food left sitting for years by a stepson long gone to college land.  Once again I grabbed trash bags, cleaned the mess and painted two coats of a neutral color the homeowner would later describe as "modern."  The landing, a mish-mosh of broken furniture and abandoned books from previous marriages, was in desperate need of attention.  After a day of clearing out the mess I warmed up the walls with a dark chocolate brown and similar toned furniture.  The unusually large master bedroom had an ill-placed broken bed with exposed springs, so I replaced the bed, positioned it in a better location in the bedroom, warmed up the walls and created a sitting area in the corner by a window.  At first glance, this project was slightly overwhelming, but breaking it down into room-by-room projects made it both manageable and profitable for the homeowner.  Whether you're attacking a painting project in one room this weekend or putting your home on the market, don't allow yourself to spiral into a panic.  Take a deep breath.  Separate emotion from the process and attack it bit by bit.  The payoff might just be enough to put a smile on your face!