Sometimes You Have to Break the Rules

By
Home Stager with Room Service Home Staging

Sometimes You Have to Break the Rules

The expression “rules are meant to be broken” never made much sense to me. My modus operandi has never been to go out and break a rule. common sense

However, I’m a big proponent of using common sense when I can in my approach to life. And sometimes at the intersection of common sense and rules, guess which one wins?

Years ago I was providing a staging consultation for a client who was moving to New York to live with her son. It was time.

Her husband had passed away just a few months before and her children all wanted her to move closer to them.

 

She was so sweet and fairly open to listening to any recommendations I made.

The home was very clean and her biggest project was going to be editing. She was an artist and one wall had at least a dozen of her paintings on it.

She was going to get some help with this from friends but she had a few requests.

Her agent and all of her friends told her that she couldn’t have any personal photos around. She had removed them and carefully packed them away.

However, there was one 8x10 framed photo of her husband. She needed his “presence” in the home with her while the house was on the market. Her husband had always been the one to handle all of their business affairs.

And, she would place the photo on the desk in the kitchen so it wouldn’t distract the buyers.

And, could she leave her Shabbat candles on the desk by her husband’s photo.

 

This sweet lady was eager to do what she needed to do so she could move but truly needed these items for emotional support.

 

Having them discreetly placed in an area of her kitchen was not going to derail any sale of her home.

 

before and after staged living room

This is the partially staged living room of my client. There was more to come. And by the way, my client was 90 years old at the time and pretty darn sharp!

 

 

When I returned after her friends had helped her pack up some of her items, she was so proud of her efforts. The photo of her husband and the Shabbat candles were there and she felt ready to move!

What I loved about this consultation was the strong bond this lady had with her husband and her faith.

 

I’ve never believed in the absolutes when staging and still don’t. People and homes are unique and I’d imagine that they appreciate being treated that way.




This is an entry in Lisa Von Domek ’s February Contest.



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Rainmaker
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Paul Weese
Colorado Group Realty - Steamboat Springs, CO
Steamboat Springs Broker and Outdoor Enthusiast

I love this: "at the intersection of common sense and rules". To see oneself standing at this crossroad, being able to make a great decision is so valuable.

Feb 07, 2018 07:35 AM #12
Rainmaker
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Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Kathy,

What a wonderful story.  With your common sense, you found a way to break the rules in a life-giving and productive way.  You just confirmed once again my impression of you.  A

Feb 07, 2018 07:47 AM #13
Rainmaker
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Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

What a great story "Kathy Streib. I like to tell me sellers it is ok to leave something personal, of meaning or of need despite what the "book" or others say.  

Feb 07, 2018 07:48 AM #14
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Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS, Broker
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate!

Kathy I so agree, use common sense and your heart. We work with many older folks and it's not so easy for some of them. It take time and listening to them  and  then gently guiding them when they're ready.

Feb 07, 2018 08:19 AM #15
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Sham Reddy Thank you and appreciate your stopping by. 

Lottie Kendall She was one of the sweetest clients I've ever had. She did let me take a picture of her with her little dog. 

Sally K. & David L. Hanson sometimes you have to use common sense and compassion. 

Feb 07, 2018 10:25 AM #16
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Barbara Todaro we're humans not humanoids!

Wayne Martin it's why we were given brains and a voice. 

Anthony Acosta - ALLATLANTACONDOS.COM Thank you!

Feb 07, 2018 10:31 AM #17
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Roy Kelley And I fear that common sense is missing in many. 

Gabe Sanders we need to view our clients as humans and not simply a sale. 

Feb 07, 2018 10:36 AM #18
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Donald Urschalitz love that photo. 

Dorie Dillard I understand what she was feeling. And she was so sweet. 

Feb 07, 2018 10:40 AM #19
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Brian England I am as well but the older I get, the more I appreciate common sense. 

Paul Weese and to that equation, we have to add judgment. 

 

Feb 07, 2018 10:50 AM #20
Rainmaker
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Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good afternoon Kathy - abolutely right.  I would not even call that breaking the rules. That is just being flexible.

Feb 07, 2018 11:59 AM #21
Rainmaker
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Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

I totally agree! There are no absolutes in staging. Each home and each seller must be treated as an individual! 

Feb 07, 2018 12:01 PM #22
Rainmaker
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Pat Starnes, Brandon, MS
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
Broker Associate, ABR, 601-278-4513

Editing can be difficult but necessary. Intellectually we know that. I'm not selling at the moment, but if I were, I'd still have one or two personal photos of my grandkids in strategic locations. Not 20, mind you, but one or two... 

Feb 07, 2018 01:51 PM #23
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George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Kathy life is not a one size fits all, and you did a great job of adapting to the situation.

Feb 07, 2018 04:06 PM #24
Rainmaker
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James Dray
Fathom Realty AR LLC - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning Kathy.

I've talked to some clients who were willing to go along with almost anything. I've also had dealing with clients who were willing to go that extra step except for a few items they would not budge on.  The secret was to find a good half-way compromise.

Feb 08, 2018 02:36 AM #25
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Kathy, I love that you can appreciate that your clients are human and you are able to so readily adapt to their passions and their faith. That is a rare quality in people and I know your clients absolutely love working with someone so caring and talented!

Feb 08, 2018 06:12 AM #26
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Ron and Alexandra Seigel Thank you so much. I think this is why I prefer working with occupied homes because I have a better opportunity to work with people. 

Scott Godzyk I can't imagine someone being so rigid that they wouldn't allow their seller this kind of comfort. 

Feb 08, 2018 09:36 AM #27
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Anna Banana Kruchten CRS,CRB Years ago I heard that a seller was told to replace all of her brass fixtures because they were now out-of-date. 

Feb 08, 2018 09:36 AM #28
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Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
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Kathy Streib This is a beautiful entry filled with sensitivity and caring. Love how you listened to her needs!

Feb 12, 2018 08:43 PM #29
Rainmaker
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Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

Your professionalism shines through in this post Kathy Streib stripping a home of all its warmth isn't necessary to stage it well.

Feb 15, 2018 06:18 PM #30
Rainmaker
149,124
Corey Martin
Martin Presence Group - Ruston, LA
Real Estate and Management Solutions

Great entry! I think that the uniqueness of each deal is part of the charm on real estate. Many times people personalize their home. At times that can be detrimental to the sale of the said home, but other times they add a certain appeal that can really draw a buyer in. Thanks for sharing!

Mar 08, 2018 06:03 PM #31
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Kathy Streib

Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224
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