Let your senses be your guide: The importance of home staging

By Shirley Watson,
Realtor, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

staging your home

Create a good first impression with prospective buyers by de-cluttering, de-personalizing,
deep cleaning and staging furniture to show-off the potential of the home.

Would you like to list it or sell it?
If you are interested in selling your home faster and with a higher return, you will want to take note of the following recommendations. To ensure a faster sale with a higher return, start with staging! Builders have done it for years to show the potential of size, a clean palette, a pop of color and a warm and inviting space that is totally de-cluttered with an updated look that the prospective buyers can see themselves living in.

When buyers go into a home with the intent of looking to purchase they are many times guided by their senses. Buying is often more emotional than intellectual. Prospective buyers will use their eyes for visual comfort as well as their senses of smell and hearing. Soft background music can be very soothing.

Setting the tone
First impressions are everything! Imagine a buyer walking up to the front door of a prospective property.  That moment is the seller’s first opportunity to have their home stand tall and proud above the competition! Nothing is worse than peeling paint, a tattered front door or unsightly debris. After the buyer crosses the threshold, it is equally important for all rooms to be in the best condition possible.

If you are selling your home, make sure that the bathrooms are grouted and free of staining, that the stoves and ovens are cleaned, refrigerators are cleaned, cabinets wiped down, linen closets and clothes closets are de-cluttered and organized and paint is touched up in all areas. This may seem overwhelming, but your Realtor can assist with these decisions and many will have a stager they can recommend or a handyman to help with completing projects.

The importance of homework
Always do your homework and you will increase the likelihood of a quick sale at a higher price. Doing your homework includes the simple, but ever important tasks of overall de-cluttering and de-personalizing your home. This allows prospective buyers to imagine themselves living in the home and visualizing their own furnishings in the home.

A keen sense of smell
A clean, crisp smell with no heavy odors or perfumes is ideal. Just a soft, easy possible vanilla or lavender smell can be soothing to prospective buyers visiting your home. You want the prospective buyers to have the ability to walk through your home with a truly comfortable feeling rather than a feeling that they are invading your home space. Less is better! Consider renting a storage unit or renting PODS and remove a large portion of the items from your home that are not presently in use. You may consider hiring a professional packer if you need assistance.

Be sure to put all items away every morning before you leave, have sinks cleaned, beds made, all plumbing clean, and garages washed out with all items neatly stacked and organized. On the outside, you will want to have sidewalks, steps, patios and decks clean, swept and possibly power washed. Again, curb appeal is everything- remember that first impressions are created immediately, before the prospective buyers even walk through the front door.

The market knows best
The market will always select a home that is standing tall because the buyer’s perception of that home will be that it has been maintained inside and outside on a regular basis, is a better value, and it will provide a no hassle transaction with an easy move-in.

For more than three decades, Shirley Watson has been recognized as one of the top Realtors in Colorado. She also has been recognized by Colorado Big Magazine as one of the 25 most powerful sales people in the state of Colorado. Her accolades also included being a top relocation specialist as well as a local expert in the areas of residential and new construction home sales.
She can be reached at 970-481-8255 or Shirley@shirleywatson.com

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Stability, Strength and Above All, Quality.

Shirley Watson Joins Berkshire HathawayHome is where the heart is and buying or selling a home is more than a simple transaction. For many, it is also the single biggest investment in a lifetime – a decision that requires careful thought, sound advice, and a professional that is dedicated to quality service.

After 26 years, I made the decision to join a new real estate brokerage for one simple reason: my clients deserve the best.

Berkshire Hathaway, a name synonymous with quality, is built on trust, integrity, stability, and longevity – core values closely aligned to the service my clients deserve. Berkshire Hathaway offers home buyers and sellers unmatched internet and marketing exposure.

With its world-renowned name, Berkshire Hathaway will resonate extremely well in our growing Northern Colorado market. I look forward to my partnership with Berkshire Hathaway and the opportunity to provide my clients with the platinum service they deserve.

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Home is Where the Heart Is (and Your Biggest Financial Investment Is)

By Shirley Watson, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

I have always believed that home is where the heart is. For many, your home is also the single biggest investment in a lifetime both monetarily and emotionally. Listed below are a few insights that I hope are helpful.

With the economy improving and a booming housing market in Northern Colorado, more and more people are taking steps toward buying and selling. For some, it’s a move into a first home. For others, it’s downsizing to accommodate an empty nest. One thing that is constant in any home buying transaction is the need for research, research, and more research. Arm yourself with as much information as you can and never be afraid to ask questions.

Dream BIG

When considering a new home, start with a wish list. Consider your priorities whether it be more space, a specific neighborhood, great schools, or an investment property. Identifying what matters most to you and your family is a great place to start your search.

Choose the right Realtor®

The first step for many home buyers is choosing the right Realtor ® and thoroughly communicating your goals to them. A Realtor® can help you find your dream home, navigate the market, and in many cases open your eyes to possibilities and homes you might never have considered.

Do your research and find an experienced professional who knows the value of the market, can negotiate contracts, seek out deals, identify pitfalls, and assist with financing questions. In other words, a seasoned expert is an asset in the home buying process.

When interviewing Realtor®s, it is important to ask the right questions, including:

  1. How long have you been in this business and what is your background in?
  2. How many transactions have you completed?
  3. Do you have a particular market focus, either a specific neighborhood or price point?
  4. Do you have an assistant in case I cannot reach you?
  5. How many other buyers are you currently working with and will you have the time to dedicate to my purchase?

Meeting a Realtor® face to face offers a unique opportunity to truly familiarize yourself with them and decide whether or not they would be a good fit to help you accomplish your home buying goals. While the internet is a valuable tool for gathering information, it is imperative to have a strong level of comfort with, and confidence in, the Realtor® you select and that can best be accomplished by personal human interaction.

A word of caution regarding Internet Sales

Be advised not to be too quick to give your information out over the internet. Some websites advertise that they will find the right Realtor® for you and require your personal information in exchange. These websites are often not your best resource and your contact information is used to refer you back to a Realtor ® who will pay a fee for your information.

Choose the right lender and financing

Another key component to a successful home purchase is to have a strong, local lender on your team. A versatile lender who can offer an array of financing options is an advantage. Also having that personal interaction and access to your lender can speed up the process and expedite your approval. A local lender understands the market place and can be invaluable in helping navigate through the financial portion of the home buying process.With Northern Colorado’s strong real estate market supported by many local corporations, the versatility of the loans available through local lenders is unmatched by most.

For more than three decades, Shirley Watson has been recognized as one of the top Realtors® in Colorado. She also has been recognized by Colorado Big Magazine as one of the 25 most powerful sales people in the state of Colorado. Her accolades also included being a top relocation specialist as well as a local expert in the areas of residential and new construction home sales. She can be reached at 970-481-8255 or Shirley@shirleywatson.com.

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Shirley Watson Joins Berkshire-Hathaway

Shirley Has Moved!

Shirley Watson of Fort Collins (formerly of Coldwell Banker) has a new office! In January 2014, Shirley has joined Berkshire Hathaway Home Services, Rocky Mountain REALTORS® of Fort Collins.

Come visit Shirley in her new office located at 3665 JFK Parkway, Building 2, Suite 300!

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Shirley Watson Featured in Top Agent Magazine

Realtor Shirley Watson of Fort Collins, Colorado was featured in the Top Agent Magazine. Top Agent is the real estate industry’s publication, which features top real estate agents from across the United States and the world! Agents are sought by the magazine via nomination for stories in every real esate market avaialble. Shirley is honored by this article, please enjoy!

Read the article here.

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