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8 Quick, Hot Design Tips From the International Builders’ Show

By Erica Christoffer, multimedia Web producer, REALTOR® Magazine

Looking for quick, easy ideas to bring a home to life, add value, or prep for sale without spending a lot? Learn from the pros! Designers who presented at the International Builders’ Show in Orlando last week had a plethora low-cost, chic ideas to make to most of an interior space.

1. Transform closets: Your clients might consider turning a smaller, awkward closet into a built-in with cabinetry and shelving, or if there’s enough space, even a desk nook. Add dramatic dimension with disc lighting on each shelf. Buyers are looking to maximize every inch of a home with workspaces and storage solutions they’ll actually use. (Jerry Collin, Kay Green Design) [Here are some great before and after closet transformations from Real Simple.]

2. Create a ‘Garage Mahal’: Make the garage an attractive space with a dedicated recycling area, wall mounted shop-vacuum, and maybe a mini (or big) refrigerator for adult beverages. When in doubt, hang it up – provide hanging areas for bikes, tools, equipment, etc. Consider installing a workbench and storage. (Jillian Prichard Cooke, DES-SYN)

Example of a grey color scheme in a great room.

3. Avoid seasonal colors: Greys and stone colors are the new neutrals. Accent them with bursts of bright blues, oranges or reds. (Marc Thee, Marc-Michaels Interior Design)

4. Provide simple luxury: A foldout cabana, two outdoor lounge chairs, and a small table is an inexpensive way to give a backyard living space a sense of luxury. Stage it with candles, flowers or cool drinks (iced tea, lemonade, water, etc.) that you can serve during an open house. (Jillian Prichard Cooke, DES-SYN)

5. Set the mood: Do you have a listing that flushed in harsh light throughout the house? Try halogen narrow spot bulbs to create warm, pooled light for romantic shadows and definition. (Marc Thee, Marc-Michaels Interior Design)

6. Faux wood: Textured wall finishes add weight to a space, which can provide warmth and richness to great rooms. Wood mimicking wallpaper is a great way to get the look of wood paneling without big cost or long-term commitment. (Marc Thee, Marc-Michaels Interior Design)

7. Inexpensive creativity: Molding brings depth and clever detail to a space a low-cost: for example, use molding assembled as a square over a bed with two smaller pictures hung side-by-side within the square. (Jillian Prichard Cooke, DES-SYN)

8. Give them room for thought: Create computer-generated room layout boards to help buyers envision various uses for flex space, such as a family room, office, kids’ play area, library, etc. Consider matting the floor plan  ideas for a professional presentation. Works well for new- and existing-home sales alike. (Jerry Collin, Kay Green Design)

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This post was contributed exclusively for REALTOR® Magazine.

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Comments
  1. Very good advice. Some of these tips are obvious, but doing them all makes a lot of sense.

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