A blog for remodel/construction questions for a Certified General Contractor

Home Builder with David Edwards Construction, LLC
Hello, I am happy to have been invited to Active Rain, what a wonderful resource and I would like to add to the resource pool by offering my advice regarding construction related questions.  I often work for Realtors and their sellers/buyers to repair or enhance listings.  I also build custom houses, additions and remodels.  So, please, if you have a question or a comment, please ask!

Comments (19)

Cindy Lin
Staged4more School of Home Staging - South San Francisco, CA
Host, The Home Staging Show podcast






Feb 26, 2007 05:05 PM
James Frazier
James Frazier Personal Development Coach - Rockford, IL
Welcome David. I am sure you will find this community a great resource of inspiration and wisdom. Welcome aboard.. I love your logo but where is your web site?
Feb 27, 2007 01:36 AM
David A. Podgursky PA
THE PODGURSKY GROUP @ Re/Max Direct - Boynton Beach, FL
THE PODGURSKY GROUP - Make the Right Move!

Welcome David... I think you'll come in handy for a lot of the South Florida questions as well - especially if you follow Ines and Rick Garcia's posts about Permits!

I'm a mortgage broker and just finished a huge construction loan last month.  It was the most complicated one I've ever done... I might have to email you with questions when I get another that complicated!

Feb 27, 2007 01:43 AM
Daivd Edwards
Thanks for your comments...My website is currently under construction and I will post again when we are online.
Feb 27, 2007 05:31 AM
Kimberly Wester
Valparaiso, IN
David - Welcome!  I am glad you came aboard!  You may actually get a question or two from me - we are in the middle of renovating a '76 bilevel and boy, did it need it!  As in most reno's we sometimes run into things we didn't expect, though in this house, nothing surprises us anymore!  I look forward to reading your posts.
Feb 27, 2007 10:43 AM
Penny Schoenbeck

Hello David,

I to am new to the Rain. I am a stager and I was contacted by a home builder about doing his model homes. His frustration was spending $200,00+ to merchandise his models only to have to get rid of a house fill of furniture after the phase closes out. So he wanted me to put my furniture in the model and just rent it from me. 

So I thought if he has this dilemma so must other builders. So I saw a nitch that I could go after but I have some question you might be able to answer for me.

What else do home builders dislike about merchandising the models besides having to deal with the furniture at close out? I would like to put to gether a proposal package that would appeal to all home builders. How long does a typical phase last? I was told 3 to 5 years. Is money for staging and rental a factor? I was told the cost of mechandising is calculated into the price of the model? Is finding and paying for an Interior Designer a factor?

Any information you could give me that would help with this project would be greatly appreciated. I have done model homes before but only when the builder gave me a budget and he was keeping the furnishings.  

Thanks again for your help!

Mar 05, 2007 04:46 PM
David Edwards
David Edwards Construction, LLC - Winter Springs, FL


 The answer to this builders concerns is simple.  It will cost more money to rent furniture.  They will be paying a premium for convenience at the end of the furniture's use, but, if money is the concern, they will always spend more to rent.

The real issue here is how much more money builders make because of model merchandising.  There is no question that the houses will sell for more money and in a faster amount of time.  I think you should turn the tide of this conversation towards the rewards that are gained from utilizing a designer!

A garage sale at the end of 3-5 years is really no big deal!  So much money will be made over that period because of the furnishings and saved money for not having rented the furniture. 

 Maybe this builder sees this as a way to stretch out the expense of model merchandising, but, do you want to be attached to the project for 3-5 years?  Do you want your projected earnings to be tied to rental income?  I think rental is for short term, I would make the point clear..."this is a much more expensive approach"  then if they go for it, well, you should make great profit! 

Mar 06, 2007 12:49 AM
Inthe community I had moved into, when it was time for the model to be cleared out, the builder had flyers dispersed throughout the community to the homeowners advertising a model home garage sale.  Just about everything went!  The neighbors were lined up before it opened.  I'm not sure what percentage he was able to recoup back, but at least he got something back, and the neighbors were thrilled about their purchases!
Mar 06, 2007 10:16 PM
David Edwards
David Edwards Construction, LLC - Winter Springs, FL
To answer an earlier response...our web site is up!  The content is still under construction, but check us out at www.davidedwardsgc.com
Mar 20, 2007 12:38 AM
Karen Otto
Home Star Staging - Plano, TX
Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, www.homes

Welcome David and I think you'll find lots of great information here at AR! Now on to my thoughts..

I have to say I'm a little confused with your comment back to Penny.  I too am a stager and finding the opposite is happening.  Many builders here (especially smaller ones) don't want to pay for merchandising their models & specs and as well as the fee of an interior designer.  These homes are sitting empty and not selling.  Each month these sit is costing them thousands of dollars in lost revenue.  Staging with rental furniture is actually cheaper in most cases.  We provide many options for the builders and aren't trying to upsell anything.  Staging features the house, not the furnishings and a lot of buyers get overwhelmed by the amount of accessories in the models sometimes making the decision not to buy based on the fact that they can't afford to furnish it in the way the see the model.  Staging is the FRAME on the picture - the HOUSE -.

Now a 3 -5 year contract that may prove to be more expensive over the life of the model but in cases of less than a 1 year lease agreement, it really is more cost effective.  I'd be interested in what others have to say on this subject as well.

Mar 20, 2007 10:29 AM
David Edwards
David Edwards Construction, LLC - Winter Springs, FL

Hi Karen!  Well- I guess the most important aspect of this conversation would be the estimated time needed to sell.  I am sure that calculations can provide a break even point even though you are speculating as to how long the product will stay furnished.  Interesting, but no doubt in my mind if the estimation calls for saving money renting the furniture that would be the way to go. 


For me, if I can see the proposal with both options I would just make my choice.  The numbers fall where they fall...it becomes a matter of choice if presented well.  I think it would be a good idea to take the "wonder" out of the equation by exposing all viable options.

I think demographic research is very important in these decisions so you don't "scare" prospects. 


Thanks for your comments, I too would like to hear what others think.


Mar 20, 2007 10:42 AM
Karen Otto
Home Star Staging - Plano, TX
Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, www.homes
Points well taken - Now I see you're an Orlando area builder - I'm a Fla. native and went to school at UCF for a year - have friends in Winter Park and  Maitland - property values have skyrocketed  not here in DFW- hope you're seeing some of the rewards in your neck of the woods!
Mar 20, 2007 10:46 AM
David Edwards
David Edwards Construction, LLC - Winter Springs, FL
Central Florida is hangin in there!  I am still very busy remodeling and I also have a "staged" spec house on the market...the response was much much better after the "stage" and well worth the investment!  Winter Park and Maitland keep me busy!  David
Mar 20, 2007 10:54 AM
Karen Otto
Home Star Staging - Plano, TX
Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, www.homes
Good to hear - I have a friend who builds wine cellars for your area - if you're ever in need.... Say hi to Mickey for me!
Mar 20, 2007 10:58 AM
David Edwards
David Edwards Construction, LLC - Winter Springs, FL
funny you say that!  Please pass his info to me, I have a project in engineering right now that has a cellar...
Mar 20, 2007 11:02 AM
Sheron Cardin
California Moods Inc - Selma, CA
ARTIST - A Home Stager/Sellers Best Friend!

This is like hitting the jackpot! Welcome David - you may end up feeling like the electrician brother-in-law by the time we get through with you...nah, just pulling your leg.

To shed some light on model home furnishings, most builders have more projects than one and they plan on many more developments in the future. I am wondering if that builder is a one time wonder.

Builders either warehouse their model home furnishings, sell them off as already pointed out, or in my experience, the models are sold turn-key for a premium price and all the money is recouped and the home buyer gets the luxury of having a fully furnished home decorated to the nines. I have seen auctions take place early on for the models.

Mar 20, 2007 11:26 AM
Karen Otto
Home Star Staging - Plano, TX
Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, www.homes
I sent you an email with the contact
Mar 20, 2007 11:56 AM
Sue Shockley
Setting the Space - Plymouth, MA
David- Welcome to AR! You will find that all are willing to help and that this is a network full of resources. I am excited to hear that you too are willing to share your wealth of information with us.  it is nice to know that you can have a contact person to bounce questions off of.  Thanks  Sue 
Mar 20, 2007 01:12 PM
Jennifer Sealey
United Home Builders, Inc - Cape Coral, FL

Welcome, David!

I agree with Sheron...  I am with a builder and am actually sitting in our model home right now typing this.  When we are ready to sell the model, we will offer the home fully furnished.  It just wouldn't make sense to do it any other way!  We will get 4-5 years of use out of the furnishings, and the typical model home buyer would prefer not to have to deal with hiring a decorator or having to furnish it themselves.  We probably wouldn't consider storing the furniture.  First off, it was purchased for this home, matching the window treatments and fitting the floorplan.  Second, a model home should preferrably show with updated furnishings.  This is a cost that the builder should account for when building a model.  I also agree with what you and Karen were talking about, time frame...  This would determine the solution.  Like you say, it would possibly be more cost effective to rent if this is a short time...  But for a model home standing and showing for more than 2 years, I believe the builder will get his return tenfold by purchasing!  Thanks for the interesting blog!  I look forward to more...

Jennifer Sealey

United Home Builders, Inc


Mar 26, 2007 05:20 AM

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