Curious if updating your home and staging would net you more money in a sale?

If you have answered YES to the above question you’ve landed on the right real estate blog. In this article titled Should you renovate your house before selling it we’re going to look at before and after photos of a residential listing, I took in Highland Park, California. The house was successfully sold after a failed sale from a previous listing. The before pictures below were the condition of the house when I was hired.

It was up to me and my team to reimage the space and position the house in the market to attract the right buyer. And what I mean by the right buyer, the person who is willing to pay the most money for the property.

“We only invest $1 dollar where we’ll earn $3 back.”

The kitchen remodel + staging

Kitchen remodel in Highland Park |Los Angeles

The first eyesore was the crown molding above the cabinets. That was taken out. We then encapsulated the cabinet and brought it up to meet the ceiling. This created a more expensive modern aesthetic. Next, the interior walls and upper cabinets were painted a flat Whisper white. This color white is expansive which creates the “feeling” the kitchen space is larger than it actually is.

The lower cabinets were painted a muted mint. The green was the perfect balance of playful sophistication. Last, the hardware, fixtures, and fittings were replaced before the room was staged. I also convinced the seller to purchase appliances.

Renovated the living room + staging

Should you renovate your house before selling it
Painting and staging made a world of difference at this Highland Park house. I listed this spot last summer 2019 | Los Angeles

The before & after picture of the living room may seem like “night and day” of a difference, but not much went into this makeover. The interior was painted Whisper white. The front door painted a fun color green and then staging. Voila! This is a perfect example of how staging transforms space.

“The goal is to get every set of eyeballs in the market looking at your listing,” says Karen Jones.

Redoing the bathroom on a budget

Should you renovate your house before selling it
The countertop, backsplash, and sink were reglazed. An inexpensive solution that pays dividends.

Thank goodness the interior doors matched and weren’t horrible. This bathroom was simple. The counter and backsplash were reglazed. The lighting was changed, so was the mirror and the hardware. The cabinets and the entire room were painted then staged. Done and done.

Selling an empty bedroom vs offering an elevated lifestyle tour

Should you renovate your house before selling it
Elevated bohemian chic staging in Highland Park | Los Angeles

You can hang your hat knowing professionally staging a home for sale will generate more foot traffic at the open houses every single time. This means the likelihood of multiple offers on your property for sale becomes favorable.

Seller’s can get caught up on the idea staging is an unnecessary expense. I mean, the prospective buyers can picture their personal possessions in an empty house, right? I’d argue the contrary.

A fair amount of homebuyers are motivated to put in a purchase offer on a staged home. Well, let’s qualify that statement. If the property is professionally staged by a designer with an eye for lifestyle and in line with current trends you’re in good shape. Using the seller’s old Posturepedic couch with hits of cigarette smoke lingering isn’t the kind of staging I’m referring to.

Home staging is not all created equally!

Renovating the master bathroom

Renovate before and after master bathroom 2020

Like the other bathrooms in his house project, the countertop was competing for attention with the floor. It’s as if both of them were waving at you. “Hey, look at me”, said the countertop. “No. no. I’m the one you want to look at”, said the floor. The goal is to make every space both interior and exterior as easy to understand as possible. Then throw in a few plants and you’re done!

The best backyard makeover ideas on a budget

Landscape remodel in Highland Park CA

This backyard space in Highland Park will never be more than it is. Lucky for us, we knew what we wanted and how to modify this sad concrete pad into something great. The idea was to create an inviting retreat that attracted both families with small children or fur babies and empty nesters ready to party. The wider net you cast the more prospective buyers will come to the table.

This backyard was a quick modification believe it or not. Half of the concrete was removed and repurposed to the rear wall of the property which created raised planter boxes. It’s important to mention we do our absolute best to repurpose as much material and demo on a job site as possible. This is better for the environment and lighter on your pocketbook. Hauling trash to the dump is a big hidden cost of renovation. Thousands of dollars of demo adds up quickly.

Landscaping renovation designs Highland Park CA

Next, we brought in the soil, grass, and native plants. After the baby lemon and lime trees were planted we hung shade sails and bistro lights. Last it was time to stage. We LOVE to stage outside spaces. It’s fun to use props such as Croquet. Once we create the lifestyle, and light the incents with the playlist echoing through the house – that’s the stuff magic is made of!

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Staging, photography, custom websites, and creating an elevated experience during open houses and private showings makes a huge difference when it comes to a final sales price. Our #1 goal is for you to walk away with more money in your pocket.

Feel free to reach out if you’re considering selling a property in Los Angeles. It would be my pleasure to schedule a convenient time for my team and me to check out your spot and offer a free consultation.

Glenn Shelhamer Real Estate Los Angeles

Glenn Shelhamer is a nationally recognized Real Estate leader who has been helping people move in and out of the Los Angeles area for many years. He is also the team lead of The Shelhamer Real Estate Group. When Glenn’s not selling real estate he can be found spending time with his beautiful wife and two terrific kids.

The #1 renovation real estate team in Los Angeles

David Clark - 805.280.1425​

I’m David Clark, a Californian, real estate advisor REALTOR®, and writer for the Shelhamer Real Estate Group located in Northeast Los Angeles California, the fastest growing real estate market in Los Angeles County. Connect with me for further information about this article, and to add and optimize the value in your property. Look for me on Instagram: @sellingnortheastla

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Mls Disclaimer:

Based on information from the / Association of REALTORS® (alternatively, from the /MLS) as of [date the AOR/MLS data was obtained]. All data, including all measurements and calculations of area, is obtained from various sources and has not been, and will not be, verified by broker or MLS. All information should be independently reviewed and verified for accuracy. Properties may or may not be listed by the office/agent presenting the information


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Glenn Shelhamer is a licensed real estate broker DRE: 01950995 in the state of California and abides by equal housing opportunity laws. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only. Information is compiled from sources deemed reliable but subject to errors, omissions, changes in price, condition, sale, or withdrawal without notice. To reach The Shelhamer Real Estate Group’s office manage please call (310) 913-9477.

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