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Lina Panza, REALTOR ® | 973.783.7400 x216 | Cell: 973.809.5277 | info@walkablesuburb.com
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Helping you find or sell a home in the best New Jersey towns.

5 Home Staging “Rules of Thumb”

living roomHome Staging has become one of the biggest buzzwords in world of selling real estate, yet many sellers are still perplexed by the concept. “Why do you want me to dismantle my photograph wall?” a client will ask. “It’s one of my favorites parts of the house!”

Plain and simple: staging a home allows a buyer to more easily envision himself living in the space. And the more of “your” stuff that’s around, the less of “his” stuff he can imagine there.

There are many suggestions I make when I meet with a client about getting ready to sell, but a few are worth noting as Staging Rules of Thumb – small changes you can make that will make your home show better and sell faster.

  1. Don’t Overdo It. Many people think of staging as bringing things in – furniture, rugs, accent pieces – but most of the “work” of staging is taking pieces out. The more “available” square footage in a room, the more easily the buyer will be able to see her own furniture there.
  2. Create Conversation Spaces. Sofas and chairs do not need to line the perimeter of the room. Consider furniture arrangements that allow people to easily converse and socialize. Let the buyer to imagine all the lovely entertaining that she can do in your home.
  3. Keep Accessories Tasteful. Small, thoughtful additions can go a long way in making a space feel homey and inviting, especially gentle smells like potpourri in the bathrooms. Best, though, to keep additions neutral; controversial material – like political or religious books – is better off out of plain sight.
  4. Focus on the Main Rooms. Staging is crucial for the Big 4: Living Room, Kitchen, Master Bedroom and all Bathrooms. The other rooms – kids bedrooms, guest rooms, den – can simply be pared down and filled in by the buyer’s imagination.
  5. Let a “Blank Slate” Be Your Guide. Your personal photographs and children’s artwork is no doubt amazing, but they are just going to muddy the waters when it comes to helping a buyer visualize herself in your home. Put away your personal effects, but please, don’t take it personally.

These rules are general so if you’re in need of a personal staging consult, don’t hesitate to call me. 973-809-5277

Another Happy Client!

There isn’t much more stressful in life than buying a home – and especially buying your first home. You can get a sense of what it’s like to work with me if you spend some time reading reviews on Zillow. Here’s a recent post that made me feel great about doing the work that I do:

“Lina helped us purchase our home recently. As first time homebuyers, we had many questions going in, but Lina patiently and confidently guided us through each step of the process. Lina was professional, reliable and very accessible, returning callskeep calm and addressing questions and concerns efficiently.

We very much appreciated that she took the time up front to learn about our family and the type of home and neighborhood we wanted. She did a very nice job of only bringing to our attention homes that met our criteria.

Lina was very well versed in the local real estate market and was able to teach us more about the geography and detailed attributes of the many different neighborhoods in town. From beginning to end, Lina was calm and patient but knew when to push, frequently offering the right piece of information and guidance at the right moment. It was a pleasure working with Lina, and we look forward to many happy years in the home she helped us purchase!”  — K.T.

West Orange NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

West Orange solds March 2016

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

South Orange NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

South Orange solds March 2016
Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Maplewood NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

Maplewood solds March 2016

 Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Cedar Grove NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

Cedar Grove sold March 2016
Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Bloomfield NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

Bloomfield solds March 2016
Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Glen Ridge NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

Glen Ridge solds March 2016
Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Montclair NJ Real Estate Sales Report for March 2016

Montclair solds March 2016
Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

4 Trends That Support Walkability

If you had asked me decades ago, when I first moved to this area, whether a walkable suburb was for everyone, I think I would have said no. I think I’d have assumed that only those of us coming from New York City – the walker’s mecca of the U.S. – would have understood and appreciated the benefits of living in an area that is easy to navigate on foot. But it’s not just New Yorkers that are walkability lovers anymore. Here are four trends that point to America’s communities becoming less reliant on cars.

1. Fewer People Have a Driver’s License. From 2000-2014, the number of Americans holding a driver’s license has fallen sharply from 91 to 77 percent.

2. Living Without a Car Has Become Easier. Not only have public transportation systems beenIMG_6152 upgraded and improved in the past two decades, services like Uber and Lyft have made “livery” service more simple, affordable, and reliable, allowing people to bypass car ownership altogether.

3. More People Bike to Work. From 2000 to 2014, the number of people commuting by bicycle has grown 62 percent. More and more, towns are budgeting (or securing grants) for bike safe roads and bike racks as part of “downtown” development.

4.Better Public Transportation Makes Good Business Sense. President Obama recently signed policy to give tax breaks to public transportation entities as well as for those who provide parking near public transportation.

If you’re looking for a place that is pedestrian and bike friendly, allow me to introduce you our own lovely walkable suburb. Truly the best of both worlds!

 

IMG HERE

I was born and raised in New York City. Every Sunday, we walked from our neighborhood near the U.N. to the Museum of Modern Art. Undoubtedly, this influenced my love for walkable places. But it also influenced me in other ways. My dad, an engineer, loved art, and we… MORE >>

From my blog:

5 Home Staging “Rules of Thumb”

Home Staging has become one of the biggest buzzwords in world of selling real estate, yet many sellers are still perplexed by the concept. “Why do you want me to dismantle my photograph wall?” a client will ask. “It’s one of my favorites parts of the house!” Plain and simple: … read full post >>

 -- April 28, 2016