Sunday, February 8, 2015

Moving out

Since I have been on the house decorating kick I thought I would share the story of selling my old house and finding a new place. I loved everything about my old house. It was a 1920 Tudor Colonial, on a lovely tree-lined street and I have spent a lot of time getting it to the point where I wanted it to be. We have done some major renovations there so at fisrt I wanted to stay there. I could afford the mortgage (barely) but after living there without my husband for a year I realized that it was just too much maintenance for me. After I made the decision to sell I had no regrets. It is a major hassle to get the house ready for sale, so it became my pet project and I often thrive on challenges.

I had a wonderful realtor who is also a friend and she was super helpful with every step of the way. She brought a stager named Barbara, to look at the house, rearrange some furniture and figure out what to do with couple of rooms which were empty after my ex moved out. I have to admit that I thought I don't need the stager.  Didn't I know it all after I spent so many hours watching HGTV?

I was wrong. Barbara was able to come up with some tweaks I wish I had known when I actually lived in the house. And it was fun! If you are selling the house I would encourage you to get the stager.  My realtor paid for her services out of her commission but it would have been worth it if I paid for it myself.

This is the 'before' of my living room:


Barbara had me put the red sofa at an angle in the corner and swap the brown chair and the ottoman. Then she mixed up the pillows and put the floor lamp behind the red sofa (not visible in the pic). Suddenly, the space opened up and my furniture started 'talking to each other'.





She said coconuts sell houses...



Added some decorating touches...



This room was empty and I thought I didn't have any extra furniture but somehow we found it.



Then she helped me to clean up the playroom. That was quite a task as you can imagine.



I even painted the stairs to the attic.


Of course I can never be sure if all those changes made a difference.  But when the house eventually went on the market I got four offers in the first two weeks. I ended up selling it above the asking price.

I decided I don't want a single family house anymore. With the help of my realtor I found a two bedroom townhouse in the same town. It was perfect for me and my daughter! Now, this was going to be so much easier.


My new place
The move is always a pain in you know what but at least I already had all the furniture.  Or so I thought.... But that's a story for another post...

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Have you moved a lot? I am now in my sixth house and I want to stay here forever. But I know I have said that before...Oddly, I don;t like moving but I did enjoy getting the house ready. Do you think staging can make a difference?










17 comments:

  1. I really like your style and I think the tweaks your stager organized were genius, congratulations on getting the good price for your house, it looked great and I bet the buyer was ecstatic!
    I can't stand to move but we've just moved out of our house, gutted it, renovated it top to bottom and then moved back in. Honestly moving to a different house would have been much easier. But I love this house and even more so after the work we've done, and I did hire a designer who has had me think differently about our space... so many people realize the potential of their house when they are about to move with the stager etc. I like the advice of "live in your house as though you could move any minute", then you know you have it at its potential while you are there. Our home are such a comfort to us in bad times, it makes such a difference to have a well-though out home.
    So happy to have you back blogging A, missed you, and I love your new place!

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    1. I think you made a right decision to stay put. You love the house and the neighborhood and nothing is ever completely 'move in ready'. But when you renovate you have an opportunity to get exactly what you want.

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  2. Enjoying your posts. I always like your style . I am intrigued to hear more about your journey. Please keep on posting....Carolyn

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    1. thank you Carolyn, glad you are stopping by :)

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  3. Wow. Your stager really knew what she was doing. And I'm looking forward to hearing about the new place!

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    1. Fred, she was really helpful and she gave me some ideas for thenew space.

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  4. So good to see you back! We don't have many townhouses here, I really love them. And of course you've been missed.

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    1. Thank you Tabs, i think i needed the break but i am so happy to hear from you :)

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  5. I haven't moved in 30 years, but I suppose someday I will. I can see the draw of a townhouse, lower maintenance! :-) I should hire a stager to come over and rearrange stuff in our house - what they did at your place really turned out great!

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    1. Vava you are so right, why do we hire people to decorate for others, we should do it when moving in, not out! Everytime i was selling I discovered easy fixes for things that have bothered me for years.

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  6. Staging makes a HUGE difference. It's what turns a house into a home, and helps buyers imagine themselves in the home.

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    1. I totally agree! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  7. HI AJC,
    SO glad to see that you are back. So many changes. I think change can be so grueling, but so rewarding at the end. I hope it has been that way for you(rewarding- not grueling)!
    I am glad you are still local. A townhouse sounds so liberating.I like the staged pictures, but the "befores" were nice too!

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  8. Thank you KnitYarns! I am looking forward to seeing you when we get together with Wendy, hope we both can make it!

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    1. Me too! When the time gets closer, e-mail me. Maybe we can "commute" in together, unless you are working in NYC now.

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  9. Beautiful new place! Totally needed for a new start and so glad you decided on this. I love the idea of a townhouse, I love green spaces but often hate the maintenance. That's what HOAs are for, right?

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  10. The house that you sold looks really wonderful, and I'm sure its new owner loves it too. I also want to congratulate you for moving in a new house! I’m sure you and your daughter like it very well. I hope you both are happy in that house. All the best to the both of you! :-)

    Robyn Harmon @ Hills Moving

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