Most condos in Arlington, VA are very plain. Neutral paint. Boxy. Meh.
This one started pretty plain as well. It was a rental for years. The owner of this condo was my friend Deborah – graphic designer extraordinaire – and her husband, Michael, is owner of TriVistaUSA, an Arlington design + build remodel company. Given their background I knew that they would be willing to take some design risks and appreciate the value of staging. My stager, Jan McElheney, came up with the concept, we rolled up our sleeves and made it happen in a couple of weeks. Our plain rental condo turned into a stylish Clarendon pad. It was something we could sell with pride (even though Deborah’s mom was super skeptical in the beginning, she’s a believer now!).
We painted all living room walls a bold color and all trim/ceiling white (I know I’ve written that trim should not be white any more, but this was an exception – please ask my stager Jan why!).
The condo had a central location, hardwoods, beautiful city view and an elegant fireplace, but the layout was tricky. It had an odd dark dining room and a small family room – so we needed to create some drama and beauty.
Both bathrooms had bone color fixtures – sinks, toilets and the tub. And how do you “fix” that? Of course with paint color. Take a look!
More photos – maybe not as dramatic.
Why did we do this? Why not just be neutral? Well – we had to stand out. We only had once chance to make a first impression. Also – contrast photographs way better. We wanted to attract a young professional who could get excited about this beautiful home. And we did. It sold in 7 days at full price. Mission accomplished.
By the way, for those interested in who covers staging costs in this process, I always cover staging, but if the property is priced under $500,000 – we split the cost of rental furniture (so about $1,000-$1,500 for the seller). If I can move furniture from a different property – then there’s no additional rental furniture cost. In this case the property was listed for more than $500,000 and rental furniture was included.