How to Sell Your Home Faster to a Younger Buyer - Guest Post By Houzz

Educating my clients about the audience they will be marketing to is one of the most important things a home stager can do. When you put your home on the market to sell, you should know that the next owner will likely be younger than you are. That's why you should stop thinking about what you like or want in a home and start thinking about what your most likely buyer will want.
Modern living
1. Stick with warm, neutral walls. If your target demographic is "young professional" or "young family," try using a warm gray as a neutral wall color. The gold or pinky-beige wall color you chose 10 years ago is going to seem outdated to this new group of home buyers. On-trend neutrals like grays allow potential homeowners to envision bringing in complementary colors and clean-lined furnishings to make it their own.
Various Work
2. Invest in white cabinetry. Many home buyers younger than 40 prefer white or off-white kitchen cabinetry. They don't want to see their momma's dark kitchen cabinetry in their new home! Consider a kitchen facelift if you have dark kitchen cabinetry with orange or red undertones. Benjamin Moore's Advance is a great paint to consider. It's a hybrid of latex and oil, and it requires very little prep work.
Teri Turan
3. Update your appliances. Many younger home buyers cannot fathom buying a home without stainless steel appliances. You'll need to update your almond ones with stainless replacements before putting it on the market.
Impala Black
4. Look for simple stone countertops. Granite and stone countertops are a must-have for most young home buyers — it will make the difference between whether they choose your home or your neighbor's home. But don't make the mistake of installing busy or taste-specific granite that may not appeal to everyone. If you plan to be in your home for a long time, go for it — but not if you plan to sell within the next few years. Instead, choose a granite that is almost black or something with a minimum of colors and veining. Anything more might be a turnoff to those picky younger buyers.
Summer Home
5. Open up your shower space. Young professionals love large, open glass showers. The garden-variety tub isn't where it's at anymore.
Cow Hollow Historic Home
6. Keep it simple for families with children. People with young kids are less likely to want a fixer-upper. If your target demographic is "young family with small children," it's important that your property be ready for them to move right in. Make sure the home has no unfinished projects or red flags for young families. 7. Consider selling your home as a fixer-upper. If your neighborhood is becoming a mecca for young professionals, there may be some appeal to the fixer-upper if the price is right. These younger adults without children may have the time, energy and imagination for making over an older home. Even so, the price will have to be lower than if it were picture perfect.

7 Personalized Spaces: The Joy of the Calculated Risk - Guest Post by Houzz

We've all heard the expression, "the greater the risk, the greater the return." The risk/return tradeoff is generally discussed regarding a financial investment, but does the same apply when investing in your home's decor? REALTORS® around the world would vehemently discourage the risks in this ideabook because highly customized homes often yield a lower return when the home goes on the market. But let's focus more on the satisfaction the homeowner receives from realizing their personal vision. For someone who desires to break out of cookie-cutter decor, the risk definitely outweighs any expert opinion.

Kohi House

The lady who grew up envying the doll who had everything can now live the dream in a pink kitchen of her own. Sleek cabinetry in a sweet, high-gloss pink is balanced by white lower cabinets and hardwood floors. This delicate balance keep the space contemporary and less confectionery. Related: Inspired? Here’s How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets Like a Pro

Diamond and Baratta design

For a colorful family with an appreciation of the arts comes a two-story foyer from Diamond Baratta Design with flair and personality to match. There is so much to love about this space, from its saturated hues to the shiny tiled floors, captivating mural, artsy stair runner and the Murano glass chandelier. The black door, trim and railing add polished accents to this enchanting space.

Dining Rooms

Purple isn't just for royalty. Enjoy vivid colors in custom drapery and even in your chandeliers. Both can carry a high price tag, but when it's something you love, it's okay to splurge. Many clients request that their decor be unique —something they won't see in anyone else's home. This room and any room you can dream up will fit the bill.

Alki Cottage

Surprise is the spice of life, isn't it? Or is that variety? Enjoy both with a BlueStar Range that offers a splash of color in a pristine white kitchen. Little kitschy elements like this make even mundane chores more enjoyable.

Glam Pop Art

Count on a wise owl to let you know who left the toilet seat up. Be open to ideas on where to place your uncommon finds and leave your guest with something to really talk about.


When the saints go marching in, it's not enough to memorialize their presence even with a baby grand piano. Why not make a grander statement with life-size, two-dimensional musicians marching in a row? Taking a stand with an artistic statement never leaves guests to question your family's favorite pastime.

Creazioni Alice Armchair

Try a less permanent statement when exploring life outside the box. Humorous art that captures moments like the one in this painting would make any parent cringe with embarrassment. The irony lies in the fact that it becomes funny when on display and it's not your kid.



The 4 Basic Types of Home Photographers to Know - Guest Post by Houzz

The Houzz community has a wide range of services and service providers, many united in the need for quality photography showcasing their built projects. There are many ways to photograph a home and many photographers to work with. And many factors come into play in commissioning a photographer. Knowing what kind of photographer you may hire or can afford will help you as you look at the pricing and the fees photographers charge. Here is a discussion of some of the types of photographers an architect, designer or homeowner might hire and what to expect from their background and experience.

St Helena Retreat

1. Architectural or Interior Photographers What they do: A professional architectural or interior photographer often has years of specialized experience photographing architectural interiors and exteriors. He or she knows how to show a space and the circulation within the space. Architects also like the photographer to show the relationship of inside to outside. These photographers own a vast assortment of equipment that they can deploy depending on the assignment and shooting needs. Commonly they do extensive postproduction work, like with Photoshop, to deliver very high-resolution photos that are often intended for publication. What they don't usually do: Architectural or interior photographers aren't necessarily prepared for portraits or casual shots. The gear they use is often big and on a tripod — shooting people or loose compositions is not what they most often do. The process is more exacting, not spontaneous.


2. Real Estate Photographers What they do: A subset of the architectural and interior photography field, real estate photography is often characterized by a photographer working quickly, making few adjustments to the composition or to the arrangement with the room. Real estate photographers may bring a stylized look to the photos with photo editing software such as Photoshop. What they don't usually do: Typically a real estate photographer and the commissioning party do not expect to use the photos for long. The photographer's fee could be considered a sunk cost as soon as the property is sold. As a result, style and the overall design story aren't usually the focus in these photos.

Wedding Ceremony

3. Portrait or Wedding Photographers What they do: Capturing the moment, telling a story and knowing the light are some of the best skills a portrait or wedding photographer can bring to their subjects. These are working professionals who also offer enhancing Photoshop services to make the finished photo better. What they don't usually do: These photos tend to be less controlled than standard home photos. They're less about composition than about capturing the perfect moment. This is quite different from architectural photographers, who now often composite a number of photos in Photoshop to create a single, perfect shot.

High-end home interior

4. Commercial Photographers What they do: A skilled commercial photographer takes photos for use in advertising, merchandising or other types of marketing material. These photographers are very well versed in the mechanics of photography; composing, exposing and delivering high-resolution files for commercial use is standard practice. What they don't usually do: Since they have a specific client and audience in mind, many commercial photographers won't focus on trends in styling or art directing for portfolio and magazine shots.

Richardson, TX: Morgan and Monica Campbell

If You Want to Do It Yourself Of course, if you have an interest in photography, you may want to go the DIY route. Today the camera and equipment needed to make high-resolution photos is in a cost range accessible by many serious amateurs and the designers themselves. A keen eye and patience can go a long way to get some good photos. Practice makes perfect, though! Do your research. Look at inspiring examples and try to implement their style. Discuss your photos with peers, take a class and then practice some more.

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Room of the Day: Preparing a master bath for resale - Guest Post By Houzz

This bathroom was large, but it was a dark dungeon that included features like faux black marble, fluorescent lighting, Lucite faucet handles, a black bidet and, oddly enough, a refrigerator. With her twin boys about to go off to college, this single mom was ready for a change. At the same time, she realized a resale would probably be on the horizon in the next few years, as she wouldn’t need so much space. “My client has really great eclectic and bold taste, but for her future plans we kept things classic and neutral in here,” interior designer Beth Kooby says. She layered in more personal eclectic touches via accessories that can be switched out with ease if necessary.

Paces Neighborhood - Atlanta, GA

Photos by Jeff Herr Photography Bathroom at a Glance Who lives here: A mother and her twin teenage boys Location: Atlanta Size: 144 square feet (13 square meters) “I’m a big fan of classic and clean for the permanent fixtures. That way a bathroom won’t get dated,” Kooby says. “You can always switch out accents like rugs, mirrors, planters and window treatments to update or change up the look later for very little money.”

ROTD: Beth Kooby

This plan shows the new layout. The linen closet previously had been a 3-by-3-foot shower stall. Kooby installed the shower where a toilet-bidet closet had been. She borrowed a little room from a large bedroom closet to work in the new bidet-less water closet.

Paces Neighborhood - Atlanta, GA

“The homeowner’s room is light, with touches of citrus, wrought iron and gauzy drapes,” Kooby describes. She created continuity via wrought iron accessories like the vintage accent table and the light fixture, the gauzy linen window treatments and the chartreuse planter. Carrara marble shows up on the vanity top and backsplash, the wall tiles around the room and in the shower. Tip: Bring life into the bathroom with plants. “I love to use plants in a bathroom,” Kooby says. The large planter was a perfect fit for the empty corner between the vanity and the wall. “It’s even more chartreuse than it looks in the photos, and it’s covered in spikes. I got it from one of my go-to spots when I need a good dose of pretty, Lush Life.” She scored the bench at 14th Street Antiques Market. “I love to add in pieces from local antique and consignment shops — I think it adds a lot of interest to the mix,” the designer says.

Paces Neighborhood - Atlanta, GA

After searching high and low, looking at “every mirror in the universe,” Kooby scored the mirrors at Cost Plus World Market. “Mirrors are a great place to add a design element,” she says. “And you can always change the finish or color.” The carved wood frames add an ornate touch that isn’t too delicate or feminine.

Room of the Day: Bye-Bye, Black Bidet — Hello, Classic Carrara

For the floor, the designer chose a reasonably priced stone that looks expensive, from Porcelanosa. In addition to helping them stay within budget, the choice warms up the room. “Too much marble can be harsh sometimes,” she says.

Paces Neighborhood - Atlanta, GA

The new shower is about 5 by 5 feet. The floor and walls are Carrara marble, with penny rounds on the former and a varied linear pattern that mimics stacked stone for the latter.

Paces Neighborhood - Atlanta, GA

Tip: Get out of the bath section when choosing a bathroom rug. Kooby recommends looking for more interesting flat-weave rugs. “They are easy to vacuum and clean; they dry quickly and feel fine on your feet,” she says. “Rugs are made to be walked on. You don’t have to be gentle on them.” The artwork is a print by George Braque, who helped create Cubism with Pablo Picasso. To keep the woodsy views while also providing privacy, Kooby stood in the tub while her client looked up at the room from the driveway outside. The homeowner had never used the old tub, but she wound up using and loving the one put in for resale.

See the Bathroom That Helped a House Sell in a Day - Guest Post By Houzz

As part of a remodel and flip of a Massachusetts bungalow, interior designer Karen Goodman gave a blue 1960s bathroom a simple, sophisticated update that not only looks more era-appropriate but also makes the 60-square-foot-bathroom feel lighter and larger. After the redo, it took only a day for the house — more than a century old — to be sold. Room of the Day: Tiny Powder Room With a Treehouse Feel

Craftsman Bungalow

Room at a Glance: Bathroom Location: Worcester, Massachusetts Size: 60 square feet (5.5 square meters) “I wanted to save this house,” Goodman says. “Whenever I find an old house that needs updating, I look at it like a lost puppy.” By the time Goodman sold the historic home in April, she had spent almost a year renovating it. She blogged about the project, from reconfiguring to rewiring. This was Goodman’s fourth flip but her first of a historic home. Though she lives in a 100-year-old home herself, she says this project tested her. “I learned my limits with this project,” she says. Whereas other flips might have required extensive woodwork replacement in one room, or some re-tiling, this house needed that in every room. “It took a lot more time and energy than I thought it would be and was worth it in the end,” she says.

Craftsman Bungalow

BEFORE: Major renovations had been done in the 1960s, and it was apparent that the home’s only bathroom hadn’t really been touched since. “A blue ’60s bathroom just doesn’t quite fit in a 1900s house,” Goodman says. Additionally, all of the plumbing was corroded and needed to be replaced, and the bathroom ended up being a complete gut. The home is more than a hundred years old, with some records dating it back to 1902. Goodman wanted to honor the home’s heritage but didn’t feel tied to making everything authentic. “It was a very different way of living back then. Just because it worked for someone 100 years ago doesn’t mean it will work for you now,” she says. Since she was redesigning the home to sell, and not for a particular client, she made sure to make design choices that had wider appeal. Goodman consulted with a trusted real estate agent during the renovation about some of her design decisions. The agent offered feedback on some of the features based on her experience about what typically helps or hurts a home’s selling potential.

Craftsman Bungalow

AFTER: The home’s age and the bathroom’s size influenced her decision to use a freestanding bathtub and wall-hung sink. “I did get some eyebrows raised when I said I was going to install a clawfoot tub and wall-hung sink,” she says, especially as the four-bedroom home has only bathroom, but it was a decision she knew was right for this bathroom. “I like to put in something a little polarizing,” she says. Someone is going to love it or hate it, but it will set it apart from other things on the market. The tub, which she painted army green, came from Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore. Overall the tub was in great shape, particularly the interior porcelain, and needed only exterior sanding and a fresh coat of paint. ”I like to add a little color, but strategically,” she says. “If you do everything neutral, people aren’t going to remember the house. You gotta give them something to fall in love with.” Because the tub is a little bolder, she played down the rest of the bathroom with grays and whites. But Goodman wasn’t thinking only about making a design statement. “Things on the floor stop your eye,” she says. By lifting everything off the floor, even a couple of inches, the bathroom feels larger. The claw-foot tub and the wall-mount sink allow you to see the floor continue, which helps you visualize a larger space.

Craftsman Bungalow

BEFORE: The previous toilet butted up right next to the vanity, and Goodman says people’s knees could hit the vanity when they used it. Though the cabinet did have valuable storage space, it made the room cramped and didn’t feel authentic to the house.

Craftsman Bungalow

AFTER: The new washstand sink opens up this corner of the bathroom. Goodman salvaged the sink from a nearby bungalow of a similar age that was also being remodeled. Once she started demolishing the bathroom, she could see that the original sink had been wall hung, like this one. “It was nice to bring it back to what it had been 100 years ago,” Goodman says. The toilet is new. One day while driving, Goodman passed another home that was being remodeled and saw a toilet out front with a sign that read “Free, never used.” That toilet is now in this bathroom.

Craftsman Bungalow

BEFORE: The bathroom’s original radiator was enclosed in an ill-fitting wood cabinet with a tile countertop.

Craftsman Bungalow

AFTER: Goodman removed the cabinet and saw that the radiator was in great shape — no rust or cracks and in working condition — so she painted it silver and left it exposed. “I’d much rather see the radiator than a random box on the wall,” she says. The bathroom’s neutral walls and floors reflect the home’s era while still feeling fresh and updated. Goodman installed the bathroom’s marble mosaic floor herself — it was a material she’d been wanting to use in one of her projects for a while — and painted the walls with recycled paint. “The designer in me likes to use my flips as experimentations,” she says. Her contractor installed the white subway tile wall.

Craftsman Bungalow

BEFORE: Most of the shelves in the built-in closet are original, but the louver doors had been added at some point and didn’t fit very well. Overall it was a convenient storage space, and Goodman wanted to make as much use of it as possible. She kept to a strict rule when it came to painting the wood in the house: “If it’s painted, it’s getting painted. If it’s wood, it’s staying wood,” she says. “It wasn’t my place to decide what should be wood and what shouldn’t be in a place I don’t plan to call home.”

Craftsman Bungalow

AFTER: The new washstand sink eliminated a lot of the bathroom’s storage, so Goodman made the existing closet as functional as possible. She kept the original shelves but removed the ill-fitting cabinet doors and added new trim. She rebuilt the bench with a lift-up top to store bath toys or other oversized bathroom accessories. Concealed drawers can store toilet paper and other supplies, and the open shelves can hold toiletries and linens. Though the new storage is a little farther away from the sink, it’s more attractive and opens up the space. "It might not be as convenient, but you’ll feel a lot less cramped with the extra space," she says.

The post was written by Annie Thornton, Houzz and posted by RealBird with permission.