Archive for Staging Condos & Townhomes

Townhome Staging In Arcadia | Builder Model

Builder Model Townhome Staging in Arcadia

We completed this builder model townhome staging in Arcadia last week. While Moving Mountains Design is well know for staging large estate homes in Arcadia for builders we also love to stage new-construction townhome models for our builder clients. Part of an 8 unit development, we staged one model unit. This particular unit has 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, a large living room and underground parking with an individual entrance for each unit from the garage.

New Arcadia Townhome Model Home Living RoomNew Arcadia Townhome Model Home Living RoomNew Arcadia Townhome Model Home Staging Kitchen

From the Listing Agent’s notes:

BRAND NEW SANTA BARBARA STYLE TOWN HOUSES … Located on the convenient corner of Arcadia Ave. & Sunset Blvd., near the desirable Baldwin Stocker School. This spectacular community is designed by renowned Architect Tyler Gonzales of Pasadena. Downstairs features living room, formal dining room, kitchen and one bathroom. Upstairs has master suite, two bedrooms with a Jack & Jill bath. Each unit has a big laundry room attached to garage as well as a private yard. Top quality everywhere. Bright & shiny. There are 4 buildings, all duplexes for a total of 8 units. Priced for fast sale. Really a MUST SEE!

We have staged a number of townhomes in Arcadia recently, with more coming. Staging town-homes requires a special skill to select the appropriate size and style furniture that will appeal to Arcadia home buyers and allow them to visualize how their furniture will fit.

Are you a builder looking for an experienced model home stager? Look not further. With millions of dollars of real estate successfully staged, we are the go-to home staging company for home builders in Arcadia, Pasadena and Los Angeles. Moving Mountains Design – We know what makes homes sell!™

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Expert Home Staging Tips To Make A Small House Feel Big

18 Expert Home Staging Tips To Make A Small House Feel Bigger

I am frequently asked, by homeowners and real estate agents I work with, how to make their home or listing look bigger to appeal to more buyers. As an expert home stager in Pasadena and Los Angeles, one of my primary jobs is to make smaller homes feel more spacious.

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Here’s a list of 18 tips for making a small home feel bigger. You can use these tips whether you are staging a home to sell or if you are planning to stay, but just need some help dealing with smaller rooms. These tips will work with for vacant home staging (if you’re bringing in furniture) or occupied home stagomg (dealing with the client’s existing furniture):

  1. Pare down the furniture to the essentials. Do you really need a chair in the bedroom? Will the room appear larger with just the bed, the nightstands and maybe a dresser?
  2. Clutter makes a room feel smaller. Lots of smaller items, like a Hummel collection or bowling trophies displayed on every horizontal surface, eat up visual space. Only display 3-5 items at a time. Store, sell or pre-pack the rest. You’re selling a home, not a collection of “treasures”.
  3. Use fewer pieces of furniture. Its better to have one larger dresser than 2 smaller ones.
  4. Use appropriately sized furniture. Having a too big sofa in a small den will call attention to how small the room really is.
  5. Pull furniture away from the wall. That little bit of breathing room will give a sense of greater space.  Create a cozy sitting area in front of the fireplace, with room to move around the back of the furniture.
  6. Cooler colors recede, so painting an interior room a pale blue, green or gray will make it feel larger.
  7. Houses appear larger on the outside when painted a lighter color.
  8. Keep walkways and sight-lines clear. Don’t place furniture so that you are walking into the back of the sofa, or other large piece of furniture, when you walk into the room.
  9. Bedrooms feel larger if there is ample space to walk on either side of the bed. Not enough space? Get a smaller bed while you home is on the market. Downsize from a king to a queen or from a queen to a double, if necessary.
  10. Place the bed on the wall furthest from the door, if possible. The room will feel instantly larger.
  11. Show more hardwood. The larger the expanse of hardwood floor, the larger the room will appear. Do you really need that area rug? If the hardwood floors are hidden by wall to wall carpet, remove the carpet. The home will feel much more spacious.
  12. Try using one larger area rug instead of several smaller rugs. Or if the room looks OK without it, don’t use any area rugs.
  13. Patterned upholstery and drapes make a room feel smaller. Use fewer patterns on upholstery and bedding. Use a solid color blanket or bedspread on a bed in a small bedroom to make the room feel larger.
  14. Strategically placed mirrors make a room feel larger. Reflect a window or outdoor view, if possible. You can visually expand a space by putting a large mirror over a sofa.
  15. A well lit room feels larger. Get rid of those dark corners. Make sure every overhead light and table lamp is lit before open houses and showings.
  16. Minimize window treatments. The simpler the better. Shutters, blinds or simple drapes (no flounces, ruffles, strong patterns or complicated valences) take up less “visual space”.
  17. Make all your cabinets and closets half-empty. You will appear to have more closet and cabinet space. There is no such thing as a closet that is too empty when selling your home.
  18. Clean houses feel larger. Make sure every surface including your floors are shiny clean. Clean your windows and screens so they let in maximum light and sparkle.

Making a small home for sale feel larger

These home staging tips to make your home feel larger will work if you are staging to sell or staging to live.

If you need help figuring out how to make your home or listing feel larger, hire us for a home staging consultation. You’ll get some easy-to-implement expert home staging and interior design tips.  Its the best “bang for your buck” and it’s a great investment in preparing your home or listing for sale, or making your home more livable if you are planning to stay.

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Luxury Condo Home Staging | Century City

Luxury Condo Home Staging in prestigious Le Parc, Century City

We don’t get to do many luxury condo home staging projects in Century City, but this was was a stunner! We were hired by one of our regular real estate investor clients. He was so thrilled by how the staging turned out, he told me he is blowing up the photos to decorate their office walls! Located in the very prestigious Le Parc complex in Century City on Empyrean Way, this 2200+ sq. ft. home was completely remodeled and made over. With 2 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, beautiful entry, 2 patios and a bonus room/office, this home is spacious and elegant.

Los Angeles Luxury Condo Living Room StagingLos Angeles Luxury Condo Living Room and Dining Room StagingCentury City Los Angeles Home Staging KitchenPhoto credit Erik Grammer

The listing agent’s notes:

Le Parc at its Best! A masterpiece remodel with a transitional style that matches traditional and contemporary to create a modern classic. Featuring spacious rooms with 10? coffered ceilings, a spacious floor plan with 2 bedrooms plus an office/den, and a one-of-a-kind sophisticated feel, this highly sought after home is truly remarkable. The kitchen is finished with Carerra marble countertops, modern cabinets, stainless professional series appliances, and vein cut travertine flooring. Upgrades throughout the home include designer luxury lighting fixtures, Thibau wall coverings, exotic walnut hardwood floors, and Artisan marble tile and mosaic designs lining the two full bathrooms. The grand living room, wet bar, and fireplace are perfect for entertaining. Century City?s prestigious 24hr guard gated community, Le Parc, is located within walking distance to shopping and fine dining. The community features private amenities including private storage, two pools, two tennis courts, exercise and meeting rooms, beautifully landscaped.

If you are looking for a very luxurious, ground floor condo in Century City, in a guard gated community, don’t miss this beautiful luxury condo.

For more information about our luxury home staging services in Los Angeles, Pasadena and Arcadia, submit an estimate request or call Michelle at (626)385-8852.

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Home Stagers Tips: How To Remove Smoking Odors From Your Home

Today I went to an open house in my Pasadena neighborhood for a condo unit that’s for sale. The condo is in a great neighborhood, in a quiet, well kept condo development. I was impressed with the walk up to the unit so extra points for good exterior appeal.  I opened the front door and WHAM! The smell of old cigarette smoke and nicotine hit me square in the face. I asked the agent if the owners were smokers. She said they were, and the apartment had been fully re-painted and re-carpeted, yet the smell persisted.

Smoking odors, be it from cigarettes, cigars, or pipes is insidious and very difficult to get rid of. It seeps into the smallest cracks and crevices. It saturates upholstery batting, stuffing and cushions. It infiltrates carpet padding. Here’s some home stager’s tips for getting rid of old cigarette smoke and nicotine smells:
Home stagers tip: Getting rid of cigarette smoke odors

  • Get rid of everything “soft” meaning furniture, upholstery, throw pillows, drapery, mattresses, etc. If you can’t put it in the washing machine or send it to the dry cleaner, you’ll never get rid of the smell. Even if you can wash a pillow cover, you will have to get rid of the pillow filler unless you can launder that too.
  • Tear out the carpet and tear out the carpet padding. Don’t replace the carpet without replacing the padding. Wash the bare floor with a product appropriate for the surface. Wash it again.
  • Wash down all painted surfaces with something like TSP which you can purchase at most hardware and paint stores. Don’t forget the ceiling. Follow the instructions on the package carefully so you don’t damage the surface or hurt yourself.
  • Wash all other hard surfaces (linoleum floors, tile, etc.) with a 1 to 3 solution of white vinegar and water (1 cup vinegar to 3 cups water). Test the solution in an inconspicuous area first to make sure it won’t damage the surface. DO NOT use this solution on granite, marble or stone. Use a reputable stone cleaner. Change the solution often so you are not dragging the smell from one surface to another. The vinegar smell will dissipate fairly rapidly, so don’t worry about that. Remember to wash out all cabinets and closets as well.
  • Use the correct Kilz primer to cover all painted surfaces. Your painter or paint store person should be able to direct you to the proper product. If the smell is particularly strong, you may have to use 2 coats of Kilz. Kilz claims to act like a sealer for both the nicotine stains and the odor.
  • Have all the vents and ducts in the house cleaned.
  • Change any HVAC filters (heater and AC).
  • Remove all lightbulbs and either clean them or replace them. Nicotine can collect on light bulbs like every place else, and when a bulb is turned on, it can act like an odor diffuser.

Most air fresheners will only mask the smell temporarily. Same with diffusers.

Please DO NOT USE an “ozone air purifiers” to remove smoking odors. According to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) a government agency, their claims are based upon junk science. Read more about ozone air cleaners or purifiers.

From the EPA site:

Manufacturers and vendors of ozone devices often use misleading terms to describe ozone. Terms such as “energized oxygen” or “pure air” suggest that ozone is a healthy kind of oxygen. Ozone is a toxic gas with vastly different chemical and toxicological properties from oxygen.

While there is no guarantee that the above methods will remove all smoke odors before you put your home on the market, they should go a long way to removing most of them.

This was originally posted in October 2010. It has been updated and more information has been added.

Photo credit: Nirbhao on Flickr.com

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+Michelle Minch