Interior Design That Helps You Sell Faster
While some people abide by the ’empty canvas’ strategy for showing and selling homes, where rooms are left without furniture and walls remain neutral colors, others are following the lead of hit interior design and real estate TV shows and employing interior design concepts to help attract potential buyers.
Why you should care about interior design
Critics of interior design argue that designers tend to over design homes and favor their own tastes and preferences, which can often misalign with target buyers. They argue instead that a blank canvas approach without furniture or staging is best, because it allows the prospective buyers to imagine themselves living in the property with their own furniture — creating a sense of potential and excitement. There are several reasons why this logic is flawed.
Photo Source: Mojo Design
Not every home buyer is a real estate expert
Real estate agents and specialists are experts at what they do. They have seen hundreds, perhaps thousands of properties, furniture arrangements, and interior designs. So, as a result, when they walk into an “empty canvas” room, they CAN see the potential of the furniture-less floor and empty walls. But are potential buyers, let’s say a software programming power couple, likely to have this level of experience or the same ability to visualize? No.
What do good interior designers do?
The best interior designers in Edmonton don’t suffocate the potential that prospective buyers can see in a home, they enhance it. When a prospective buyer walks into an empty room, they have nothing to compare to their current home, furniture, or experience, and often aren’t quite sure what to think about the space. But, when they walk into a room that’s been designed by an interior design consultant, they have something to latch on to. Suddenly, instead of a blank, unrelatable canvas, the prospective buyer is thinking “this couch is the same size as mine, I could really see myself sitting here,” or “we have an armoire instead of a dresser, so I think it would look better along this wall.” A room that’s been optimally designed doesn’t stifle the creativity and interest of the potential buyer, it ignites them. And greater interest can mean a faster sale at a higher price.
Photo Source: Jostar Interiors
Outsource or DIY?
So far, I’ve limited my discussion to good interior design, but most of the complaints lodged against interior design are done so after a bad interior design experience. So, how can you make sure that your property is enhanced by good design instead of strangled by bad? While not always a guarantee, one worthwhile approach is to hire an experienced interior designer.
Edmonton’s interior designers often attract new clients through word of mouth and reputation, so ask around, and check out local online listings. Reputable designers and design companies will have a website with image galleries of past rooms, and these can also be an excellent tool to help in your selection process. But remember that Edmonton’s best designers adapt to the tastes and desires of their clients, so if there are a few samples that don’t fit your personal taste, don’t let it discourage you.
Alternatively, you may decide to strike out on your own and design rooms yourself. While a completely viable option, it helps to understand a few basic design concepts before you begin:
1. Character, not cost – good design isn’t necessarily expensive, and expensive design isn’t necessarily good. You don’t have to purchase brand new, designer furniture for staging to inspire that sense of potential and interest outlined above. As long as furniture isn’t overtly dated (think 90s) or in poor condition, it can be useful. Use flea markets and surplus stores to your advantage.
2. Color and contrast – Color is the music of design. It sets the mood and attitude of a room. You can use color to enhance the non-movable elements of a room. An older, perhaps untasteful brick fireplace, for example, can be made a buying feature when surrounded by warm browns and reds. Contrast works hand in hand with color, and employs difference to draw in the eye. White cabinetry and walls, for example, can draw attention to black marble countertops and dark hardwood floors.
3. Mass and proportion – Mass and proportion can be considered to avoid a sense of claustrophobia and clutter. An oversized couch and armchairs in a small living room only exacerbates the potential faults found in a room’s size, whereas sleek, simple furniture without large, deep cushions can create welcome and appeal.
Want more tips on DIY interior design, or want to widen your knowledge base so you’ll be able to hire a great designer when you see them? Check out this article—How to be a good interior designer.