Packing up the car to head to the lake was our family tradition every Memorial Day weekend. It was a holiday spent with my very large extended family members. We were a large crew that never had enough house to accommodate all of us so when I came across this new listing of Christy Curtis and Dwight McCarthy of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage I started daydreaming about how amazing it would have been to hang out under the Lake Tahoe stars enjoying the view from this patio with my family.
I recently heard some great tips from Susanita de Diego, broker/owner with Coldwell Banker Your Calgary Home Selling Team; about simple staging tips that could help boost a home’s appeal and give homeowners a competitive edge when selling their home. Your own agent will likely suggest a lot of similar things, so I wanted to share so you would gain some insight into why these ideas make sense.
- Stage rooms with one purpose. Rooms that have many uses can confuse or even deter homebuyers, so staging rooms with one purpose is vital. Determine who your most likely target market will be, whether it’s young professionals with no kids, families, or even empty nesters. Then present your areas to fit their needs. If you’ve been using a room as a guest room/kids playroom/home office, pick the one use that best suits your buyers.
- Tackle the easy “do-it-yourself” projects. Spruce up your home by updating kitchen and bathroom fixtures and updating cabinet hardware. Add a fresh coat of paint in a neutral palate that won’t distract from your home’s features.
- Focus on the living areas. Potential buyers should envision themselves entertaining friends and family in the living areas of the home. Make sure those areas feel as spacious as possible by removing any unnecessary furniture to allow for easy traffic flow.
- Make sure the master bedroom appeals to both sexes. Remember that the master bedroom is a room that a couple will be sharing, so the décor should appeal to both sexes. It should feel like a calm and peaceful refuge, not a frilly boudoir. Remove any feature that seems too gender-specific and paint the walls a neutral colour.
- De-clutter & depersonalize. Buyers want to picture their family living in a home, not the previous owners. You’re going to be moving anyway, so start now by packing away family photos, personal mementos knickknacks. Store away valuables under lock and key. Some property owners find they need to store some of their belongings off premises to create an open feel.
- Furnish the home, but don’t overdo it. While an empty house may look spacious, it’s often hard for buyers to visualize their belongings in a home if they’re just looking at bare walls and floors. Leave the basic components that allow the viewer to define each room.
- Don’t forget the outside spaces. First impressions can play a key role in a consumer’s decision-making process, so don’t neglect your home’s curb appeal. Make sure the home’s exterior is inviting by trimming the bushes, mowing the lawn and painting faded window trim. Buyers will appreciate the seller’s efforts with the yard work, and will tend to assume that the same attention to detail has been devoted throughout the property.
Photo provided by sarae.
Todd P. Conklin and Stephanie Reed of Coldwell Banker Distinctive Properties recently landed a listing that has every ski and wildlife fanatic drooling: the 80-acre Sun Valley, Idaho estate and ranch home to former World No. 1 Swedish tennis player, Mats Wilander.
The Wall Street Journal took notice today, and featured the truly spectacular home in its Private Properties section, among an exclusive collection of the nation’s top listings.
Wilander says that both the home and its surroundings are breathtaking and while he is sad to bid the home goodbye, he knows that someone else will fall in love with the estate and much as he and his family has.
With nearly every luxury amenity available, the home is also perfect for those seeking the simple things like enjoying a cup of hot cocoa by the fire. The 10,000 square-foot main house has seven bedrooms and eight and half baths, as well as endless features including a chef’s kitchen, multiple fireplaces, sauna, billiards room, gym, music room and a wine cellar. Outside facilities include a pond, ice rink, lap pool, hot tub, patios and a guest house.
To take a tour of the Mats Wilander Listing in Sun Valley.
I don’t know about you, but I love to take home tours when I’m on vacation or even in my hometown of Savannah, Ga., when I have visitors from out of town. Related side bar: For those of you who have never visited Savannah, it should definitely be on your weekend getaway list. Be sure to check out the home tour at the Owens-Thomas House, the tour guides that I’ve had are hysterical and provide fascinating details about the Hostess City’s historic district.
Here are four of my favorite homes that I’ve had the opportunity to visit and tour while traveling:
The Grand Trianon at Versailles. Less grand than The Palace but not as modest as the Petit Trianon, where Marie Antoinette preferred to stay, I found this place magical. Everything had this amazing tone of rusty pink, whether inside or outside. And when the wind blew while walking on the breezeway you could smell the fragrant lavender growing abundantly in the surrounding landscape.
Hemingway’s home in Key West. Crazy to think he bought this amazing home in Old Town Key West for a mere $8,000 but then went on to spend $20,000 on an in-ground swimming pool when running water wasn’t even available in Key West at the time.
Next city up on the travel docket is New Orleans, where I’ll be traveling to the Coldwell Banker Generation Blue Experience. Anyone have recommendations for fabulous homes to tour?
For many of us, starting the New Year means getting back to the grind as we put away our party shoes and head back to work. However, some lucky retirees are hanging up their working hats for good, and thanks to U.S. News and World Report (as featured on Yahoo!) they now have a list of the ideal spots to spend their golden years.
Ranking the 10 best places to retire in 2012, U.S. News factored in weather, affordable housing and nearby recreational activities in choosing the best spots for every kind of retiree – from those who care most about pleasant, seasonal weather (head to Flagstaff, Ariz.) to those who strive to be environmentally friendly (how about Walnut Creek, Calif.)?
We spoke with Michael Schmidt of Coldwell Banker Schmidt Family of Companies in Traverse City, Mich., which was awarded the best retiree haven for water views on a budget, to find out what makes this town special.
“Traverse City is somewhat of a hidden gem with some of the nicest freshwater lakes and beaches in the world, fantastic wineries and most importantly such a great mix of people,” he said. “It offers a diverse group of people congregating together all year long with many celebrations of food, music, and our beautiful areas. If you love the outdoors, you will love Traverse City; we have 10 golf courses within an hour distance and at least five different ski resorts to choose from during the winter time. Additionally, we have one of the most accessible airports in the country that can get you to Chicago, Minneapolis, Detroit or New York in little over an hour’s time if you desire to hit the big city.”
So what can you find in Traverse? This lovely three-bedroom home sitting on a beautiful shared beach is less than $300,000, featuring two fireplaces, a neighborhood park and a tennis court.
- 3 Bedrooms, 2 Baths
- 2,684 Square Feet
Below are few more retiree-worthy listings in some of the top ranked cities. Where is your dream place to retire?
- 2 Bedrooms, 2 Baths
- 1,364 Square Feet
- 3 Bedrooms, 2 Baths
- 1,185 Square Feet