Sold 2017

Spring Market 2017

Spring Market Staging Update 2017

The 2017 Real Estate staging year at Prep has had a busy start. Our staging consults are way up from last year, as more and more Real Estate professionals and homeowners are beginning to catch on to the value of a staging consult when selling a property.

Too often seen as an extra expense, staging is now being recognized for the value it brings, in time on the market, internet exposure and return on your investment. Online images are the “make or break” when a busy home buyer shops the internet for a new home. A “no thanks” is just a click away so don’t be fooled into thinking your home is “ok” to list on the MLS. A home owner can’t be objective when it comes to their “palace” You may have put time , money and sweat into getting your home ready for listing but does it have the look today’s buyers are looking for.

Even professionally decorated homes often need tweaks by an experienced staging professional. We do this everyday, we know what buyers are looking for, what turns them off and what it takes to get your home on their “must see” list.

All the homes above and many more have sold this Spring. Many of them had just a 2 hour staging consult and e mailed report.  All had an experienced Realtor who is social media savvy, professional photography and serious, “do what it takes” owners who trusted Prep Home Staging to advise them on what is required to attract buyers in today’s Real Estate Market.

Call me today

Avril Brown 902 489 6162

contemporary-vases

Keep calm and sparkle on

A little sparkle goes a long way, whether staging your home for sale or decorating for the holidays. Nothing brightens a room more than the shimmer of silver, the glint of glass or a flash of chrome. But beware, there is a fine line between too much bling and tasteful sophistication.

Here are some of the ways I like to add glamour to a room, without overdoing it.

Mirrors

Killer-Bathroom-Traditional-design-ideas-for-Shell-Backsplash-Decorating-Ideas

 

Lighting

Flushmount-4-light-Chrome-and-White-Crystal-Chandelier-cda382f6-facf-4cff-b320-a46e1e016d0e_600

 

 

Mercury Glass

contemporary-vases

 

 

Velvet pillows (or upholstery)

 

Q_zpsaffa82f3

 

Glass

 

S_zps25125fd6

 

Art

 

beach-style-artwork

 

Adding any of these accents will instantly add sparkle and update your decor to get your rooms noticed.

6ff60fbfdde676bfb192dcbfff52f2d8

 

Related Images:

cropped-web-header-7.jpg

Behind the scenes

Styling a lifestyle photo shoot

I love a blank canvas, in my case usually a room/rooms, though I have been known to paint a canvas or two. Much like creating a work of art, lifestyle staging whether for Real Estate or to promote a product is all about layering elements.

The images myself and Vanessa Lentz of www.farmgateimaging produce for Halifax retailer www.wickeremporium.ca are done in a photo studio at Wicker Emporium’s head office in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Not quite a room ( we usually work with 2 walls) the other half of the studio is used for web  product photo shoots. This half is painted in white and resembles a skateboard ramp with one wall curved on the bottom to eliminate shadows in the finished web image. Every Wicker Emporium item from napkin rings to armoires is photographed here so it is a busy spot.

As soon as Vanessa and myself finish a lifestyle shoot we are busy planning the next one. Each shoot takes a week or more to plan. First step is to collaborate with Wicker’s Marketing Director to get an idea of what products to promote. Next I make a list of items I will need for the shoot. This involves checking the website , visiting the stores and sending the list to the inventory department. If available the large items of furniture are reserved in inventory for the shoot and placed outside the photo room for me before shoot day.

Lifestyle shoots are all about creating a mood so lighting comes into consideration. Vanessa and I discuss the setup (is this a morning/ afternoon/ evening vignette) We have a moveable wall on wheels (wouldn’t we all love one of those! ) which has a window with frosted glass. There are more than a few challenges to overcome when shooting. The photo studio has large windows that look out on a parking lot, a drop ceiling, a large double door and 1 smaller one that lead to the warehouse and a staircase, which we can use in the shoot if we reposition the wall.

20130619_120838

I arrive the day before the shoot or the morning of to unpack and position the furniture, steam linens if needed, select and pick up accessories from one of the stores, shop for any food, flowers etc. for props and unload and unpack any additional items needed for props from my own inventory. I start with positioning the larger pieces of furniture (I may also get a sneak peek of any new items just arrived in the warehouse, it’s like Christmas!) Once I have this part right I can start to layer. Rugs, drapes, artwork, accessories. It’s a process that takes a lot of tweaking before I am happy with the finished result. It usually takes 4-5 hours to set up a small shoot. More elaborate shoots like the Holiday ones may take up to 2 days to complete.

20130621_100845

This particular shoot was a “bathroom” setting. Not being done in an actual bathroom we had to get really creative to give the look of a country bathroom without a tub, sink or even running water. To make it even more challenging for Vanessa I used a large mirror. Mirrors are so tricky in photo shoots. The reflection of a drop ceiling and warehouse doors does not a pretty image make, so I positioned the moveable wall to reflect the window, quite effective in the finished image! There is a lot of tweaking during the actual shoot too, just off camera one part of the setup can be ripped apart as we reposition everything to get a good variety of images. There can be dozens of images shot but only a few are used (the cream of the crop) Even slight adjustments can make a world of difference to the final result so Vanessa and I constantly review her shots on camera and make changes as we go along to get the perfect end result.

After the shoot, it’s time for Vanessa to work her magic in the editing department. It’s always a thrill to see the final images after Farm Gate Imaging has done the technical stuff (she’s a genius) and it always amazes me how her vision and expertise can change what I might think was an ok shot into something spectacular.

Here are some images from the shoot. Prepped, re prepped, tweaked, edited and finally with text added by a designer. A lengthy process but so satisfying to see the finished result after everyone has done their part. These images are used for website, Face Book, Twitter, print and in store advertising.

Final Face Book banner image 11522_10152951392090244_1062323958_n

We try to make every shoot different and fresh and we are so proud to be associated with Wicker Emporium, a fabulous local Halifax company that is expanding in big ways in Canada.

Country Fresh

fgi_0243

 

 Props added

fgi_0192

 

 Showcasing accessories

fgi_0033

 

Final Web image

13-07-02-Main-Ad4a

Last weeks shoot was a kitchen setting and I have to say Vanessa outdid herself. Keep checking the Wicker Emporium website, Face Book page and Twitter account to see new images of our work and Wicker Emporium’s beautiful products.

In a few weeks it’s time to start on the Fall lifestyle shoots, I hope the weather cools down before I set a Thanksgiving table.

Enjoy your Summer 🙂

Avril

Prop Styling

Avril Brown

http://prepstaging.com/

Photography

Vanessa Lentz

www.farmgateimaging.ca

Product

http://wickeremporium.ca/

 

Staging Portland Hills 2

Online images make or break a sale

We all keep hearing over 90% of buyers are searching for their dream home on line . A captive audience,or is it? Bad images don’t entice a buyer, grab their attention or do any listing justice. A great picture should stop a prospective buyer in their tracks enough to investigate that listing further and arrange a viewing. There is no way to get people in the front door if they don’t like the image on the screen. We see it all the time. Agents eager to get a listing on the market snapping a home that is nowhere near ready to be photographed, with a cell phone camera or a good quality camera for that matter. Having a better than average camera doesn’t guarantee good images. It’s not what you have, it’s how you use it! Not marketing a property with all the tools available in this day and age is doing a client a great disservice.

Before staging
Before staging

 

Staging and professional photography has to be seen as a very worthwhile investment. The two go hand in hand. A home can be beautifully staged and ready for buyers but bad lighting and odd angles don’t do it justice in the eyes of a buyer. Having professional pictures done of a home that has not had the trained eye of a Home stager do at least do a consult at the property, is not maximizing the potential of a client’s largest investment.

After staging
After staging

 

In the images above you can see the before and after. In the first first image the room has awkward furniture placement and too much has been removed, leaving it sparce and uninviting. Only one section of the room is featured, leaving it to the imagination how much space there really is. Light is poor out and even the wall colour is not true. The second image after the room has been rearranged and a few items from my staging inventory have been added for colour and interest. You can see the whole room, light is balanced and you can see the view outdoors. Some light staging was all that was needed in this home but it made a vast difference. This property was sold within 3 weeks after staging and professional photography.

If you were in the market to buy a home either for yourself or as an investment, ask yourself this: Would the pictures you take draw your attention to the property?

A good picture is worth a thousand buyers.

prepstaging.com

902 489 6162

Related Images: