Property Marketing 101

Wednesday, 3 June, 2015
Home staging companies Johannesburg

Unless you are a property investor, selling a home is a very personal and emotional experience.  One of the main mistakes that people make when selling their homes is to let their attachment to their home and their goals for their next property get in the way of an appropriate marketing strategy. Generally this translates into them taking a reactive versus proactive stance to selling. Many sellers list their properties for as high as possible (what they need to buy their new house and pay the agent) and make as little improvements/adjustments to their current homes and hope for the best.  As they realise this strategy is not working they start to lower their price and make an effort trying to improve the overall presentation of their home. By this time they have lost the golden opportunity of creating a strong launch onto the market.  Many of the problems associated with this approach, such as higher selling costs, low ball offers and a general perception from buyers that there is something wrong with the property, can be avoided by proper preparation. 

If you are thinking of selling your home or buying a new one give yourself at least 4 weeks before you even call an estate agent or start looking at new properties. Take this time to do some market research of your area in terms of past selling prices and current list prices of comparable homes and get a realistic idea of what your home might be worth. Next spend some time fixing the basic things buyers look out for- damaged paint from fixed leaks, unfinished renovations, weathered window putty, overgrown/neglected gardens etc. If you are too lazy to fix it imaging how buyers feel when they have the option of buying someone else's house instead. Next start packing! You hope to move soon anyway so you may as well start removing up to 40% of all items (including furniture) to make your home feel more spacious. Next give your entrance area and the first room in your house a fresh coat of paint, including your front door and garage door if necessary. Buyers form an opinion of your home within the first 15 seconds. While you have the paint brushes out paint over all the bright accent walls in your house and children's bedrooms with a more neutral colour.  At last you and your home are finally ready to call an estate agent to evaluate your property and to take those all important pictures that will make or break your sale. That's property marketing 101!


Green Interior Design Johannesburg

The need for more green in our home interiors seems clearer than ever.

Home Staging Companies South Africa

An old kitchen gets a drastic upgrade on a small DIY budget. 

Interior Design Trends 2015

Impress potential buyers by adding some on trend accessories.

Sell your house fast Johannesburg stager

It's amazing what a lick of paint will do to well... anything really. 

Monday, 30 March, 2015


Green with Envy

While Emerald Green was the Pantone colour of the year for 2013 it's our colour for 2015.

Home Staging Companies Johannesburg

I'm not sure whether it's the recent Saint Patricks Day that has awakened my 25% Irish blood but I'm certainly feeling the green when it comes to residential interiors. As urban living spaces get smaller and smaller and empty pieces of land in Johannesburg are snapped up by developers and turned into towers of concrete, the need for more green in our homes seems clearer than ever to me.  While Emerald Green was the pantone colour of the year for 2013 it's our colour for 2015.  We even think adding more green needs to be included in our list of home staging tips going forward. When preparing your house for show days adding a few glass vases of large garden leaves like Elephant Ear is definitely a good idea.  I'm starting a new furniture and accessory collection and will definitely be looking at a palette of emerald green, gold, black and white with mirrors, marble and natural woods. An accent chair in a bird of paradise inspired fabric is our next DIY makeover project so stay tuned for our next before meets after post. 

Sunday, February 1st,  2015


 Renovation Genius

An old kitchen gets a big upgrade on a small budget...and how you can do it too.

Minor Kitchen Renovation Home Staging

As most real estate agents in Johannesburg know, kitchens and bathrooms sell houses. For many home owners however the thought of upgrading a kitchen sounds like a lot of work and money. That's exactly what buyers are thinking too, only they have the luxury of buying someone else's house instead of yours. While new kitchens do cost a lot of money, improving existing ones doesn't always have to. Featured here is a budget friendly DIY Kitchen makeover from the blog Dans le Lakehouse.  

By keeping the layout of the kitchen the same and merely painting, replacing counter tops, removing upper units and installing shelving, this kitchen has gone from a major price negotiating point to a major feature and is likely to ensure that this house sells faster and for more.  Not only does the space have a fresh aesthetic but it also possesses a certain je ne sais quoi that now makes it lovable and memorable- just what you need when staging a house to sell. To ensure your kitchen is show day ready try applying the following home staging tips (they all start with the letter c so they are easy to remember)- clean , counter space, capacity for storage.

Wednesday, January 14 , 2015


Design Trends 2015

Update your home with accessories from the years top trends to sell your house faster.

Interior Design Trends 2015 Home Staging Tips

Design trends are one of the mysteries of the design world. All of a sudden something you had never previously thought of buying is featured in every retail outlet and magazine spread. What makes design trends even more peculiar is that they are somehow  just what you've been into lately.... and yet simultaneously it's the first time you've noticed it. As home stagers we're always on the look out for ideas of what to do to make a house loveable.  It makes a lot of sense to us to incorporate things into your house that buyers love when styling your property for a show day. A few simple changes like swapping out your scatter cushions and accessories for the latest hue's will help give your living room the wow factor it needs helping your house sell faster and for more.  

According to those in the know,  the key trends to look forward to in 2015 are what is being called 'Pure Classics', 'Secret Garden', Natural Elements' and 'Aqua Marine'.  Pure Classics is the mixing of old world elegance and materials (marble, metallic's, silk, crystal) in new ways to create a luxurious yet individual signature style. Secret Garden, Natural Elements and Aqua Marine are all part of a strong back to basics movement in design where materials are inspired by colours and textures found in nature.  

Tuesday, September 23 , 2014


Before Meets After

Its amazing what a lick of paint will do to well.....anything really.

DIY Chair Makeover Home Staging

My favourite movie is City of Angels. There is a line in it where the Angel of Death asks one of the people he has been sent to fetch, what their favourite thing was while on earth.  I thought my answer would be pancakes..... but I've decided it would definitely be paint. It's transformative powers are truly amazing and transformative powers are what you need when you are a home stager. This gorgeous chair I picked up online just needed a few cans of high gloss black spray paint and some love to illuminate it's true potential. Dulux now stocks a spray paint called 'Duco' (you can find them in their Johannesburg branch in Rosebank) which produces some pretty good results. Unless you have a spray gun it is really hard to get an even finish though. Once the hard work of sanding & refinishing was complete a quick trip to the upholsterers and she was beaming. This piece is now my favourite in our home staging collection. Our home staging tip from this project is definitely to choose a fabric that is a classic yet still striking when re-upholstering furniture. This is always a good tip for interior decorating but is even more important when staging a home to appeal to multiple buyers. 

Thursday, August 14 , 2014


Loving This Look

When it comes to designing a space or collection its all about the mood board. 

Home Staging Johannesburg Collection Inspiration

Nothing like contrast to bring about visual interest. In this 'exotic eclectic' look, high-end luxury is combined with organic elements like reclaimed wood, moss and zebra skin. One of my favourite things in interior design at the moment is how marble is being used with hand crafted pieces like grass baskets in the same space. Not only is this look very on trend, forming part of the growing "Pure Classics" look in design, but it is also a look that we feel will resonate with Johannesburg home buyers.

Taking inspiration from this look I've included a zebra skin rug, hounds-tooth occasional chair, white fur throw, white s shaped chairs paired with a reclaimed wood dining table, marble top study desk, woven grass carpet and vintage books into my collection. This delivers a look that is simultaneously both high glamour and approachable. When using home staging as a marketing tool for high end properties it is very important to strike a balance between a space that buyers will both admire and feel comfortable living in. Thats our home staging tip for today.



"Lucy responded very promptly, spent more time on our problem than we had expected and provided very useful ideas and suggestions, that in our judgement are very much in-line with modern thinking as seen on television programs and magazines."  

Private Seller, Pretoria, SA

"Illuminate Home Staging has made such a difference to my portfolio of properties and the sales thereof. Their consultants abilities to advise on market trends, spacial perception, layout as well as the look and feel of a property have proven to be very helpful in the sale process of my properties."

Property Investment Company, Johannesburg, SA


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