Interior Marketing Group Founder and CEO Cheryl Eisen and Co-Staging Director Christina Slater offer some simple-to-implement tips for staging contemporary, yet warm environments.

Whether you’re a rookie agent, a rising team leader or an established veteran broker, we can all benefit from sharpening our skills. Follow our “Back to Basics” series to learn fundamental strategies, tactics, philosophies and more from real estate pros across the industry.

Whether you’re a rookie agent, a rising team leader or an established veteran broker, we can all benefit from sharpening our skills. Follow our “Back to Basics” series to learn fundamental strategies, tactics, philosophies and more from real estate pros across the industry.

Whether you are showing a seasonal rental or staging a new listing, bringing the freshness of spring to your listing’s design is a sure way to create excitement. We reached out to Interior Marketing Group (IMG) Founder and CEO Cheryl Eisen and Co-Staging Director Christina Slater for some advice on perking up home interiors for the season.

7 secrets to a turn-key ready home

Eisen and Slater suggested the following simple, affordable touches to make any home look lighter, brighter, and more contemporary.

  1. The Perfectly Made Bed: A welcoming way to make your bedroom feel luxurious.
  2. Rolled White Towels: A small detail that makes your home feel like a five-star hotel.
  3. Fresh Cut Flowers: A personal touch that adds warmth and life to any room.
  4. A Cozy Throw Blanket: A simple, homey solution to a living room that feels stark or uninviting.
  5. A Fully Stocked Bar Cart: A posh upgrade to your office or living room.
  6. Eye-catching Artwork: A personalized feature that goes a step beyond your average staging design.
  7. Sweet Scented Candle: A chic, fragrant addition to any living space.

Christy: Do you have some quick, easy and affordable ideas for freshening up a home that’s been sitting on the market for a while, especially with warmer weather approaching?

Eisen/Slater: As the weather warms up, a great way to freshen your home up this spring is by bringing the outdoors in. Try using floor-to-ceiling curtain panels that draw the eye to the windows; it makes them feel bigger and brings in light.

Another way to bring the outdoors inside is with fresh flowers or plants; this adds a touch of warmth and life, as well as a pop of color.

Finally, you can add a quick and easy pop of color by swapping out throw pillows or blankets for ones that are brighter and more colorful. Our go-to color choices for accents and accessories right now are evergreen, chartreuse, and blush-tones.

Christy: Can you give us some ideas for making up that perfect bed? Do we need stacks of throw pillows or do you take a “less is more” approach?

Eisen/Slater: A well-tailored bed goes a long way. Our number one rule of thumb is: Layers. We like to use a plush duvet insert with a coverlet that is tailored at the bottom to add color or texture.

We always, always use king size pillows, regardless of the size of the bed; this gives the illusion of a wider bed and covers the mattress end to end.

Finally, we finish the look with chopped pillows in varying colors or textures, for a final touch that makes the bed look freshly made and uniform, just like a luxurious hotel-room.

Christy: Do you have any suggestions for plants that work well in a staged setting where fresh cut flowers might not be practical?

Eisen/Slater: It can be hard to keep a plant alive for brokers between showings in any staging so we almost always opt for faux plants. This ensures that you will always have a plant that looks full and alive.

We gravitate more towards greenery than florals because they give the space a fresh, modern feeling without being too taste specific.

Christy: Do you have advice on artwork? Do you try to match the artwork to the style of the home or do you tend to default to a neutral abstract style?

Eisen/Slater: Artistic preference is something that can be very personal and specific. Art is something that is extremely subjective because everyone views it differently.

For a rental or a staging, you can never go wrong with neutral abstract art. Our in-house art department keeps this in mind when creating works for rental and staging projects. It adds interest, while maintaining a more universal appeal.

Christy: In terms of the outdoors, do you have any tips for freshening up the curb appeal quickly, easily, and affordably?

Eisen/Slater: It’s important to make a good first impression because the outdoors of the home is the first thing to be seen. You want to create a look that is tailored and well-kept. A fresh power wash goes a long way in achieving this as well as adding planters with faux boxwoods to frame the entryway.

Another quick and easy trick that can really make a difference is adding a fresh coat of paint to your front door. It’s a simple and affordable, yet effective, way to make the entrance to your home look fresh and clean.

Christy Murdock Edgar is a Realtor, freelance writer, coach and consultant with Writing Real Estate in Alexandria, Virginia. Follow Writing Real Estate on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

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