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Make Buyers Swoon With These 4 Summer Vignette Staging Ideas

July 3, 2019

KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock

Picture walking into your dream house and being greeted by inviting scenes of summer relaxation throughout. Maybe there’s a short stack of beach reads next to the pool, or a pitcher laid out with chilled glasses, all ready for you.

This is what vignette staging is all about: drawing in buyers with curated scenes that showcase your home’s top features. It’s even better if they evoke the mood of the season.

So if you’re looking to sell your house quickly this summer, keep reading to master these four fresh vignettes that are guaranteed to make buyers swoon.

1. A dreamy front porch


Photo by Houzz  
“Nothing says ‘welcome home’ like a well-designed front porch,” says Seattle-based interior designer Sherri Monte. “Whether it’s a hanging swing with accent pillows and throw blankets, or a pair of rocking chairs with a side table in between, a good first impression starts at the front door.”

Go the extra mile by adding several magazines or books with a decorative coffee mug or wineglass. Monte even suggests adding a small rug or accent greenery to complete the look.

“Vignettes work because they create a story in the buyer’s mind,” says Justin Riordan, interior designer and founder of Spade and Archer Design Agency.

Just by looking at your front porch vignette, potential buyers might imagine a summer afternoon relaxing in a rocking chair, or watching their children or grandchildren play in the yard.

“The story may or may not be true,” Riordan says, “but if we, as the seller, can make them feel desire for the type of lifestyle they crave, then we’ve done our job.”

2. An enticing entryway


Photo by JayJeffers
As the second space your buyer sees, the entryway is arguably just as important to focus on when selling your home. To ease buyers into the summer vibes, try pairing a large vase with freshly cut flowers on an entryway table.

“A tall vase, one that adds whimsical personality and maintains a transitional style with greenery, will create a light and airy vibe,” Monte explains.

Add a few soft-scented candles and a linen tea towel. Remember to limit the number of objects in your vignettes to avoid the scenes becoming overcrowded.

“Layer in tones and elements found outside during the summer, but don’t be afraid to leave a little breathing room,” Monte says. “Repeating colors and elements that we see outside is a great way to subconsciously create continuity.”

3. A fresh, breezy kitchen


Photo by Lowe’s Home Improvement 
Everyone loves a clean, fresh-feeling kitchen. So go ahead and throw open a few windows before the buyers arrive.

But don’t stop there. Summer is easily the best time of year to use colorful produce to your advantage—and not just while cooking. The next time you visit your local farmers market, make a plan to pick up a few extra-bright veggies or fruits for display in your favorite bowl.

Forgo the freshly cut flowers in favor of a small potted plant, something fragrant—like rosemary or basil. Place these items on a wooden cutting board or textured mat with folded cloth napkins to complete your countertop vignette.

Another great kitchen vignette is what Riordan likes to call “the drink setup,” which consists of an empty pitcher and six empty glasses on a tray with cloth napkins.

“This can be placed on a kitchen counter, and it speaks to having guests over on the front porch and preparing to have drinks brought out to them,” Riordan says.

A word of caution: “Do not—and I repeat, do not—fill the pitcher with liquid or fake liquid,” he says. “It takes the gentle whisper of the vignette and turns it into a desperate scream of fakery.” When it comes to vignettes, subtle is best.

4. The perfect backyard


Photo by Smith & Vansant Architects PC
If you have any outdoor space to speak of, you’d do well to consider throwing in an outdoor vignette or two.

“If your outdoor space has room for a dining table, why not set that table with a gingham tablecloth, picnic basket, and a set of outdoor dishes?” Riordan says.

For vignettes like these, stick to a single color scheme.

“If every outdoor vignette has multiple colors, it will appear chaotic in listing photos,” he says.

Another simple summertime vignette can be built around a hammock. String one up between two trees and add a pillow and a light blanket.

“Suddenly your buyer has a great place to read and relax,” Riordan says.

The final word

No matter which spaces you decide to stage, it’s good to have a central object and build your vignettes from there. A fire pit, for example, might call for some stacked wood, a lantern, and a cozy flannel blanket. The pool might do well with a lounge chair and a folded beach towel paired with a large brimmed hat.

Having a focal point keeps things from getting too chaotic.

“Vignettes are designed to be a bite-sized section of the overall home, so you want them to create cohesion and harmony,” Monte says.

Keep these guidelines in mind as you create the dreamy summer home your buyers can’t wait to get their hands on.

The post Make Buyers Swoon With These 4 Summer Vignette Staging Ideas appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.

Home Buyers Reveal: ‘The One Surprising Feature I Love Most About My Home’

February 6, 2019

baona/iStock; realtor.com

It’s almost Valentine’s Day, which means it’s the perfect time to talk about love! House love, that is.

A lot of times people buy houses because they fall in love with certain features. They see a modern kitchen or beautiful front yard and can’t picture themselves in any other house. But sometimes it’s the little features—details that buyers might not pay attention to during tours—that they end up appreciating the most.

We asked homeowners to tell us their favorite (and unexpected) part of their house to show a little home appreciation this Valentine’s Day.

If you haven’t found your dream home yet, look out for these bonus features on your next home tour—maybe they’ll help you decide on your dream home!

A tree in the front yard

When we moved into our house decades ago, I wanted to take the tree out of the front yard. I’d heard stories of trees messing with the foundation and since the tree was pretty close to the house, I just didn’t want to deal with any of that.

But we sort of forgot about it for a while and, when our kids got big enough, we put a tire swing on the tree and our kids loved it. Of course, we couldn’t possibly take the tree out then.

Years passed and I actually loved watching the tree grow and change colors with the seasons. Recently, we did have some issues with the roots reaching the house and we had to get the tree taken out. Yes, it was a hassle, but I’m so glad we kept the tree all those years, it was absolutely worth it. – Bill Ford, Irvine, CA

A soaking tub

We bought a house where the master suite had a big soaking tub and one tiny shower. I’ve always been a shower kind of woman, so I was a little peeved that I didn’t get what I’d asked for. Still, we decided we’d just renovate the bathroom to put a nicer shower where the tub was.

Long story short, we didn’t end up doing that. As it turned out, the tub ended up being one of my favorite things about the entire house. Taking a bath made for a great reward for getting the kids to bed (and it really helped my always-sore back). It was something I didn’t want, didn’t need, but ended up loving. Go figure. – Jennifer Davis, St. Louis, MO

A wet bar

Our house has a wet bar complete with a minifridge in the living room. When we moved in, we thought it was a waste of space, especially since we weren’t big drinkers. At first we wanted to tear it out and replace it with some storage.

I ended up getting some nice glassware and put a couple of cute bar signs on the shelves above. It turns out that we do keep a fair amount of alcohol in the house, and putting the bottles in the bar freed up some good space in the kitchen. We also ended up storing sodas and water bottles in the minifridge, and we loved being able to grab a drink without going too far from the couch. We just needed to dress it up and make it our own. – Liz Mullens, Brea, CA

Lots of lights

When we bought our home, I remember someone telling us to check all the lights to make sure they work. My husband and I went around the house and made sure everything turned on and, while I did notice that there seemed to be a lot of lights for such a small place, I didn’t think much of it.

Now that we’ve been living here for about a year, I have to say that all those lights are probably one of my favorite parts of the house. Of course, there are enough lights to keep the house feeling bright, but there are also a lot of lighting options so it’s perfect for any mood or time of day.

There are lights under the cabinets in the kitchen dim enough so that the living room can be dark enough for movie watching, but bright enough to grab stuff from the kitchen. There’s also a hanging light fixture over the kitchen table that’s in just the right spot so it’s not too bright during dinner. There are also lights over the couch, and over the doorway. … Plus, almost every switch has a dimmer. – Cassidy Carr, Provo, UT

Two living rooms

When we bought our place, I thought the floor plan was a little weird. The kitchen was in the middle of the house with a living room on one side of it and on the other side was supposed to be a dining room. Being a young couple who usually eat dinner in front of the TV, we knew we were probably never going to use a dining room, so we made that room a second living room.

I guess the previous owners felt the same way because they had cabinets and a TV hookup in both rooms already. While we thought it was awkward when we first moved in, those two living rooms ended up being my favorite feature of the house. When my wife has her grad school friends over, they study together in one room and I can be in the other living room doing my own thing. – Jesse Buckenberger, State College, PA

A covered patio

When we were looking for houses, it was really important for us to have a big, grassy backyard. We have three dogs, so we knew we wanted the space.

So, whenever my wife and I toured a house, we would always make sure to spend a good amount of time walking around the yard. I was always most concerned about the size of it, but when we chose the house we live in now, my wife said she really liked it because of the covered patio. I honestly hadn’t even noticed the patio before because I was so busy looking at everything else, but now that we live here, it’s my favorite thing. We sit out there for hours reading or just talking as we watch the dogs run around. – Sean Lee, San Luis Obispo, CA

The post Home Buyers Reveal: ‘The One Surprising Feature I Love Most About My Home’ appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.