I recently staged a seller's home that needed quite a bit of work. She needed to repaint her home - but didn't want to spend the money to do it. So I had to create a lot of magic with Mr Clean Magic Eraser and some leftover paint that I found in the garage. The painter that she had hired didn't mark any of the paint cans - and for one room (the den) all the seller had left of the paint that was used was a small jar of sample paint. When the seller told me that her painter had painted only 7 months ago - I couldn't believe how badly the paint held up. Then she told me that she only paid the painter $90 a day. She also had to pick him up from the train station when we was painting and return him there at the end of the day. When I say the paint job was pretty bad - I am being kind. In the den, the seller had tried to do some touch ups with the sample jar that she had. What she didn't know was that paint manufacturers put any sheen of the color in the sample jars - not specifically flat or eggshell...so there were spots on the wall from the jar being a different sheen. I had to search around the house for artwork that would obscure this error. Wound up using some very colorful paintings done by her young daughter that worked out great!. Apparently the painter didn't buy enough paint (or the seller bought just about enough paint to cover the walls - but no leftovers for touchups!).
In the entryway, which had one half round wall - there was a "line" marking where the entry color stopped and where the hall and den color began. The "line" was crooked. Not only that - there were some dents and holes in th entry wall. I asked the seller why the painter never fixed these holes - she didn't know why (and I guess she just never noticed this). I fixed the crooked line and the holes and dabbed in the leftover color (which didn't match 100%) - but it was pretty close and looked a lot better than having holes in the wall. I advised the client tha she should have the entry, the hall and the den repainted - and she told me she would. Somehow - I don't think this happened!
Then, at every turn, the seller would tell me how little she paid for this table, or that chair - or the bed linens - all incredibly low priced. She was so proud of the fact that she was a super bargain hunter. The home is a nearly $2 million dollar home and in a very wealthy area. The sellers are well paid professional people. I began to count myself a very lucky person in that the realtor was able to sell my staging services (1/2 day for $500).
I can understand when a seller doesn't want to spend a fortune when they are selling their homes - but in this case, the situation was a chronic one. Everything done on the cheap "showed" and it was up to me to wave the magic wand over the house to make it look pampered, well-cared for and worth the hefty price tag - when that was clearly not the case.
I was thankful that the sellers didn't have a lot of clutter. If that was added to the mix I'd still be there!
I just wish that home sellers would take better care of their homes (oh - no...that would mean I'd be out of a job - so forget I said that!). What I mean to say is that I wish that sellers would be realistic about the condition of their homes if they haven't really been good caretakers. I know that realtors deal with this all the time in terms of dealing with clients and the pricing of homes. Condition is so important when selling a home. It amazes me that many sellers do not realize this!
Just wanted to vent a little. Now I feel a bit better!