Our Windward Lifestyle Blog will fill you in on the many nuances of property here on the Island of Oahu. Whether you are buying, selling or just day dreaming about our beautiful Island you will find intersting articles on a wide variety of things.  Don't see what you want ??? Just ask.  Alooooo-ha, Rein

March 13, 2013

Never Try to Sell a Home that Is Unfurnished

6 Reasons Why It’s Important to Stage a Vacant Oahu Home For Sale

The following are six reasons to show why, especially in today’s market, it’s more important than ever to stage a vacant home:
1. Homes that show well are the ones that are warm, inviting, and make an emotional connection with the buyer. Vacant homes rarely accomplish this goal.
2. Buyers have to become emotionally excited when they enter your home. They will make a decision within 30 seconds as to whether your home is right for them. In today’s market, they have to go “wow” as they enter each room of your home. Partially, or minimally, staging a home does not work. Think about it, how do you feel when you enter a vacant home versus a beautifully staged home?
3. Without furniture, there is no frame of reference, making it difficult for buyers to tell the scale and size of the room. Will the master bedroom fit a king size bed? How about the great room – it looks too small for a sectional. When buyers have to start questioning…they normally walk away.
4. When homes are vacant, every flaw is exposed. Normal wear and tear, a chipped tile or small crack will be magnified. This will cause buyers to focus on the negatives…rather than the positives. A professional stager knows how to redirect a buyer’s focus, emphasizing the positive features of the home while visually diminishing the negatives.
5. Only 10% of buyers can visualize, so when they walk into your home, 90% won’t actually be able to visualize the home’s potential. You don’t have to be a gambler to see that these are terrible odds with probable poor results.
6. A vacant home will send a message to buyers that the seller is desperate to sell. Right or wrong, knowing the seller has already relocated gives the buyer a distinct advantage when negotiating, often submitting a lower offer. The Real Estate StagingAssociation’s survey of Realtors found that vacant homes take 68% longer to sell and sell for as much as 15% less that professionally staged homes

Pitfalls of Selling a Vacant Home

The fundamental thing to consider when deciding whether to furnish a vacant home is price. And statistics have shown that the ‘price’ of leaving a home vacant can be a lower selling price and a longer time on the market. You must ask yourself if this is a price you can afford to pay?
On the market for 4 months --No Offers ---Few Showings  
Professionally Staged By Stage It Hawaii--Sold after first open house
My approach is to provide you with professional staging at no cost to you as you are already paying a great deal in Realtor fees to sell your home. I bring the extra value you deserve for those dollars as I also own Stage It Hawaii, an upscale home staging company, with over $140,000 in furnishing to completely stage your vacant home. 
If I don’t have the proper furnishings for you particular home, I will buy them. Before you list your home with anyone, call me for a free consultation and evaluation of your home, and what I can do to sell it faster and for more money. You will be glad you did.


Posted in Home Staging
March 12, 2013

buyer bait



                     Turn Your Home Into “Buyer Bait”

As a professional Realtor and a Professional Home Stager I spend a great deal of time reviewing the current market, what’s selling, what isn’t, and how can I improve the looks of the product I am selling (your home).  I read countless articles on home staging, network with other stagers and buy new furnishings on a weekly basis (spent a little over $3000 just last month).  Today’s market demands that your product be the best looking one on the market, if you want to get top dollar.  If you don’t want to do some work on your home and have it properly staged (stagers may easily charge anywhere from $3000 to $5000 to fully stage a home), then just reduce the price to attract buyers.  If it doesn’t look great the buyers will reduce the price for you, if they even choose to make an offer. 
If you agree that your product has to look better than the other products out there, then you have come to the right place.  We know how to create “Buyer Bait” and once they walk into your Product we know we have them.  Here are just a few tips to get you started.  When you want a complete analysis of your product and how to make it the best looking one on the market, please call me for a free, no obligation, consultation.  Let’s begin:
  1. The exterior and entrance speak volumes of what is inside—It is ALL about first impressions and they have never been more important in you life.  The exterior of your home MUST look well groomed and clean.  Mow the grass, trim the hedges, power wash the side walk and driveway, repaint or replace the mailbox, replace your outside light fixture, and put nice address numbers on the home.  Place some seasonal flowering plants at the entrance to the home and consider new hardware for the door.  A great, low cost, coat of high gloss paint on the door (in a very specific color—call me for the color) can make a tremendous difference.  Add to that a nice Brass Kick Plate at the bottom and it’s like putting a bracelet on your door.
  1. The entrance will set the tone for your entire home.  What do you see when you walk in? Is it clean, neat, and uncluttered?  If you have a foyer, consider a small table with a small plant as you walk in the door.  If the entrance is directly into your living room it is SOOOO important that you have the furniture properly place and use a “vignette” to focus the buyer’s eyes and create a feeling of warmth.  Follow the “rule of three”.  The human brain is wired to be able to wrap itself easily around concepts, phrases and visual elements that come in threes (“location, location, location” is a good example). When staging, creating vignettes in groups of threes is the fastest and easiest way to present a visually appealing “concept” for a room.
  1. Float Your Furniture- If your couches and chairs are clinging to the walls, you are not alone.  It is a common decorating mistake and theoretically is done to create the feel of “more space”.  It does not do that.  It is better to position furniture into cozy conversational groups, and so important to take a look at the traffic flow of the room.  Professional stagers commonly refer to envisioning a figure-eight with clear pathways around it.  This will show the obvious traffic patterns and will open up the room and make it seem larger.
  1. Consider Paint—Nothing gives you more bang for the buck than paint.  It is relatively inexpensive and you can do it yourself in 2 to 3 days.  Don’t get stuck painting everything “neutral” as in beige and white (don’t go to the other extreme and GO PURPLE).  There are many “neutral” colors that will enhance the appearance of your room tremendously, and that is where I can help when you call for a FREE CONSULTATION.  My redesign expert and I have painted almost every color in the book at one time or another and we know what works (and what doesn’t).  Before you spend a great deal of time painting it the wrong color (remember it is not what you like, it is what will appeal to the buying public), let us help you (for free).  TIP:  make sure you paint your trim in a nice high gloss accent color, which may be white but could also be something else!
  1. Storage—Ok, you finally made the big decision to sell your home, and it is now a PRODUCT.  We already know it has to be the best looking product but where do you start.  As you are selling, that means you will be moving out (and when you list with me you will be moving out very soon).  We don’t put your home on the market and then pack when it sells!  WE PACK FIRST (or at least do most of the packing).  You have lived in your home a number of years and have accumulated a TON of stuff.  The first step is to sort it.  One pile for the dump, one pile for the garage sale, one pile for your favorite charity and a pile for the stuff you want to have at your new home.  We recommend renting a PODS (Portable On Demand Storage).  Box up everything that you want to keep and have in your new home and store it in your POD.  This includes excess clothing (closets always look bigger with less clothes), books, excess dishes, Christmas stuff; everything that you do not need in the next 60 days (shouldn’t take longer than that to sell if it is listed with us).  Additionally, when we stage your home (FOR FREE) we may want to bring in some of our furniture and remove some of yours.  The furniture, pictures, accent pieces, etc. that we remove are stored in the POD.  Now we can get to working making the Product the best looking one on the market.
This is only a few suggestions on preparing your home (PRODUCT) for sale and we have many more.  We sell homes (and always Stage them) for a living and we know what works.  While other Realtors may say they will “stage” your home, none (at least that I know of) has over $140,000 in furnishings to do the job.  Call for your FREE CONSULTATION and let me help your TURN YOUR HOME INTO “BUYER BAIT”
March 25, 2010

Kailua- The Hidden Beach Town

A beach town just 30 minutes away from Honolulu and Waikiki

The Windward Oahu town of Kailua—population 36,513—is only a 30-minute drive from the hustle and bustle of downtown Honolulu, but it may as well be a world away. There are Oahu residents who go for years without making the drive over to this part of the island. And to be truthful, Kailua residents are perfectly okay with that. They rather enjoy having a scenic slice of Hawaiian heaven all to themselves.
Getting to Kailua was always a challenge. Ancient Hawaiians only had two options: hiking over the Koolau Mountains or sailing around Makapuu Point along the island’s eastern shores. More often than not, they chose the direct route and climbed a trail up and over the pali (cliff). Today, most drivers reach Kailua via the Pali Highway (Route 61). No matter how rough of a day Kailua residents may have, the feeling they get as they emerge from the highway’s tunnel and take in the sweeping panorama in front of them is one of instant comfort and reverence.

Kailua Beach











Another perfect day at Kailua Beach

Kailua is first and foremost a beach community. In fact, the steady onshore trade winds makes Kailua Beach one of the world’s preeminent windsurfing destinations. Robbie Naish, regarded by most observers as the sport’s greatest champion, grew up at Kailua Beach.

In 1998, Kailua Beach Park was named “America’s Best Beach” by coastal expert Doctor Stephen Leatherman and then “retired” from subsequent consideration. As one Kailua resident noted in ALOHA Magazine, “If I feel stressed out, boom, in three minutes I can be at the beach and rigging up my sailboard. Even if you’re not at the beach, it’s never far away. It’s in the air, you can smell it.”

Kailua is a self-sufficient town with a strong sense of community. Christmas and Fourth of July parades are held here every year. There are Little League games, block parties and canoe paddling events. For its residents, Kailua represents the good life.

“Once I come through the tunnel (from Honolulu) at the end of the day, that’s it,” said another Kailua resident. “I see Kailua and the ocean, and I’m home. I leave work on the other side.”

Artilce from Aloha-hawaii.com




Posted in Kailua Town