Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Operation Listing: Staging on the Cheap...and Moldy


The icing on the cake.
The activity I'd fantasized about while I painted doors and steamed grout.
Time to transform our home into the likeness of an Architectural Digest cover!

I spent hours reading articles on the staging process and even watching related YouTube videos.  And, after calculating in our kitchen upgrade expenditures and subtracting them from the budget, thrice, maybe many more times, it became clear that I had nothing to spend on staging.


Except enough change in my car to buy a can of gold spray paint.  For a shiny dusting of the random frames around the house.

To make them all matchy for a frame wall in the dining room.

I positioned it all out on the floor first.

 And then secured them to the wall with Velcro hanging strips.

Focal point that draws attention to the back wall then up to the high ceiling? Check.

In one of the bedrooms staged as an office, I employed the 'Distraction Deer' technique.  

I want to say that this room is on the small side and has inadequate lighting...wait, is that a ceramic deer head?  The possibilities here are endless.

In the kitchen we propped open a recipe book to a dessert that we have never made.  Ever.

I was worried people would see through the lies so I considered rubbing some cocoa on the bottom of the pages so they looked weathered.  But didn't act on it.

However, I did act on the urge to embezzle from Anthony for more staging money.

On a warm October night, I ran into Safeway with the $20 he handed me to grab apples and detergent and used the rest of the cash for pumpkins.  Pumpkins for staging on top of the kitchen cabinets on cake stands.  With the mini gourds snuggled underneath a cloche.

I was so pleased with my cuddled pumpkins.

For about 2 weeks.


Subtly sending potential buyers the message, Now this is a home I can mold my life around!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Shop: Goodwill Online

You know I love Goodwill.  And their half off Saturdays.  And the 20% off coupons that they send out in Arizona.

If you follow me on facebook, you know that I snagged these vintage sofas from Goodwill on Tuesday.

Or rather, they snagged me.  Cajoled me.  Seduced me.  Swept me off me feet.  However you want to put it, I didn't stand a chance.

Now there is a new way to peruse Goodwill treasures:

It is set up like Ebay, with Goodwill stores throughout the nation posting their gems online for all of us to fight over.  Shipping can be a little high depending on the item, but at least you can calculate it before hand to better set your max bid.  Some even offer instore pick up.


It certainly helped me scratch a roaring itch.

That itch for a lion door knocker.  Relieved by a Goodwill store in Indiana when it arrived yesterday.

Knock, Knock.

Who's there?


Doris who?

Dorisn't big enough for your new knocker.  Find somewhere else to put it.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Operation Listing: Lipstick on the Kitchen

At this point in Operation Listing, our house felt like new.  

Fresh everything.

Except the kitchen.  Still stuck in 1985.  Showing up to the party in a crusty laminate countertop and saggy old fridge drawers.  With a hot box that advertised the hours she'd spent cavorting with random turkeys throughout her 20s.

When we started Operation Listing, we budgeted $5,000.  And we had already spent it on paint, carpet, new rock for the backyard, cleaningdecluttering and general repairs.

The budget was created after review of comp houses sold in the neighborhood, including a home down the street with the exact same floor plan as ours.  Unlike ours, it had a pool.  But also unlike ours, the home was not in good condition.

It sold in August 2012 for $165K.  We hoped our sprucing could get us somewhere near $175K for ours.

Comp house down the street:


Now, back to the party with Kitch from 1985.

It's October 2012.

We've been working hard and just want to be done.  Nervous and anxious to get our house listed before the holidays, I checked out the comps again to see where things were at.

Hmm, interesting.  Same comp house down the street is on the market again.

For $225K.

Sale pending.

I was completely amped and wanted nothing more that to turn Kitch 1985 into Prom Queen 2012 and up our listing price.  After talking it out with Mr. Schatze and our realtor, I got some quotes to see how much it would cost us.

Well, Prom Queen was out of the budget, so I looked for 'B' Honor Roll instead, with a part-time job, involved in some activities, you know, well rounded.

Low Grade Granite countertops to include a new sink - $2,175
Stainless fridge, dishwasher, oven and microwave - $1,731
Faucet - $124
Cabinet hardware - $30

Total - $4,060

We pulled the trigger and threw up a little bit. Praying we didn't make a mistake.

Way better.
Kitch Classy.
Kitch with a bright future.

What? It's the kitchen that sells a home? Then do your thing Sista!

Things I learned from Kitch 1985 and Kitch Classy?

♦ Pacific Sales gave us a great deal on all the appliances and I will go there again. And I wish they were paying me to say that, but they're not.
♦ I like two sinks and I like them the same size.
♦ I'm in love with the Kraus faucet we got and hope that we meet again someday soon.
♦ Granite isn't for me. Well, at least not cheap granite. Do they make granite that doesn't require routine sealing and doesn't stain from olive oil and red wine? I'm sure I can't afford it if they do.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Tuesdays with Isaac: Let's Just Do Christmas Twice a Year

Greetings friends.  This is Isaac.

Heidi invited me over for my 1st Easter on Sunday.

It is now my least favorite holiday.

No quantity of hollowed eggs filled with sweet potato puffs can take away the indecency I feel on the inside.