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April showers bring May flowers

Updated: Jul 6, 2023

They certainly do!


Spring is well and truly in the air, and we are all very happy about it!


Another month has passed and we are here to share with you some of the many projects we've been working on this month at style and stage.



Pinner Lane


We've been working our magic on a whopping 5 bed lived in home in Pinner. It was even the home of Sir Patrick Moore as a young child!


Image: BBC Television


We staged one of the rooms with space themed art and then found out that Sir Patrick had lived in this very home. How very apt! Not only was this property a home to an astronomer, it was also previously a doctor's surgery! We love finding out about the history of the homes we work on - it's just one of the amazing privileges we have in working in our fabulous client's home.



This home is full of character and the owners have worked really hard to spruce it up to address the recommendations we gave them. We then came in with our sorting and staging services.


With some of the rooms being used as storage and part home working, we redefined these, resulting in a spacious large family home with much potential and added value for the new homeowner. A loft conversion previously used as an office / craft / guest space is now transformed into an amazing primary suite. It's quite an oasis. There's also a new, large and bright home office to work from. One of the agents who visited after we've done our magic said:


"I was really impressed Ceri, you have done a fantastic job and I will definitely be recommending you in the future.
You truly elevated what was an already stunning home.
I look forward to seeing the photographs once they come through as have no doubt they will be fantastic."

Danny Caulfield, Gibbs Gilespie Estate Agents


Our staging services will help potential buyers understand how they may use the home to its maximum potential. We have added value and made previously unusable space usable.


This really is a property not to be missed, very soon to be on the market. Our Case Studies page is also being updated!


Bedroom Reno


Our pre teen bedroom is complete and our client is very happy with their new space!


They had out grown their old room and were ready for something new which could reflect their bubbly personality and sporting interest. As the floorprint is tight and there is limited headroom in parts, we maximised storage capabilities with:

- an ottoman bed

- large corner storage which also add extra seating

- extra deep wardrobe


The reconfigured room even has a basketball hoop to get in that extra practise, with a chiller to keep those drinks super cool! There is also a black out blind to help with those zzzzzz's.



As you'd expect from a pre teen we've had an appropriate review:


"AMAZING!"


Virtual Staging - Visualising Potential


Often when looking at a home or even a room, the furniture and personal possessions, or lack thereof, can make it really difficult to see the potential on offer. To help show the potential, we often stage a room virtually. This means our clients can:

  • Visualise the potential of what is possible

  • See a different and improved layout for the room eg. a kitchen can become a bathroom and vice versa

  • Digitally clear a space so it can be viewed with an open mind


All without the cost and hassle of doing this physically. Virtual staging works on new builds, probate properties, lived in homes, empty homes, in fact any type of property, including commercial spaces.


Here's two examples of what we can achieve ...


Garage Conversion to Open Plan Kitchen


We've just finished this project.


The brief on this project was to show how an old garage could be converted into an open plan kitchen. We've designed a welcoming kitchen with all the mod cons that you'd expect to see. The copper accent pieces set off the tone wonderfully - what a transformation!




Empty to Modern Living Area


In this example, we turned a tired rental into a desirable home. This home is now sold.

If virtual home staging is something you’re interested in, whether this is your forever home and you're struggling for inspiration or you are looking to sell or let, please feel free to email us at info@sortstyleandstage.com and ask any questions you may have!



Housing News


We continue to keep up to date with the housing market and one way we achieve this is by being in regular contact with our estate agent community. They are at the coal face, as they say.


From discussions this month, we know that the housing market is getting busier. Many of the agents that we have spoken and continue to speak with refer to this as a more "normalised" market ie. prices are adjusting from the highs post Covid.



It is also very welcoming to hear the last news from Rightmove. Here are their May highlights:


  • Average price of a property is up by 1.8% (+£6,647), a new record of £372,894

  • This 1.8% monthly increase is the largest this year and is significantly higher than the historic average for May, at 1.0%

  • Agreed sales numbers are just 3% behind the last more normal pre-pandemic market of 2019

  • The difference between asking and the agreed sale price is at an average of 3.1%, in line with normal market levels

  • Buyer demand confidence overall is up compared to 2019:

    • 3% above for second-stepper sector homes

    • 6% above in the first-time-buyer sector homes

    • 1% lower for top-of-the-ladder homes

  • Average mortgage rates are remaining steady despite another increase in the Bank of England base rate eg. an average 5-year fixed mortgage with a 15% deposit is now 4.56%, compared to 5.89% last October


Tim Bannister, Rightmove's Director of Property Science says:


“This month’s record price is a strong indication of sellers’ confidence, and we can see from activity levels and the still relatively limited choice of property for sale that this confidence is justified in some segments of the market. More discretionary sellers at the top-end may be prepared to price high and wait for the right buyer, and whilst it is positive that they appear to feel no financial pressure to sell, the data suggests that some sellers in this sector will need to price more competitively if they want to find a buyer in the current market. A more stable mortgage market is good news, and after a period of rapid rate rises followed by some significant falls this year, this period of relative stability will help home-movers to plan ahead.”

Zoopla have reported:


  • that demand continues to recover, with sales rising

  • Annual house price growth slows to 3% from 4.1% last month, with the worst of the month-on-month price falls behind us

  • First-time buyers were the largest buyer group in 2022 and look set to be a strong source of new sales again this year

  • The housing market is more balanced than for some years and there could be more than 1 million sales in 2023 if current trends continue (this is the average volume of housing sales per year on average, ignoring the impact of Covid of course)

Take a look at this interesting comparison between 2023 and 2019, the most notable being the stock of homes for sale - from -14% in 2019 to 66% so far in 2023!



Source: Zoopla


Zoopla have indicated that they think for the outlook for 2023 is that the worst of the house price falls appear to over although house price growth will slow further over 2023. They comment that the housing market is more balanced between supply and demand than it has been for some years and as a result, if sellers continue to be realistic on pricing, then there is a chance for up to 1.1 million sales in 2023 which would be a very positive outcome, given the industry average (negated the aftermath of Covid), was 1 million. Learn more here.


Even today, we were speaking to one of our homeowner clients and they said their estate agent had confirmed that staging will help them sell more quickly!



Staging is more important than ever if you want to sell more quickly and potentially for more. By using our award winning staging services, you will benefit from the following:

  • Professional photos to showcase the lifestyle on offer to your buyers

  • Higher on line interest - remember you only have 6-7 seconds to attract your buyer's attention online

  • A higher number of buyers walking through your front door

  • Buyers will stay longer at the viewing (typically this can be 1 hour for our staged homes)

  • Buyers are more likely to put in an offer and multiple offers are not uncommon

  • You are likely to sell quickly - on average within 14 days

  • You may well achieve a higher sale price


We're here to help. Call Ceri on +447984 005 626 so she can show you how we add tangible value.


Do also take a look at some of the many client projects we've worked on in our evidence based case studies.



June


We're working on some new interior as well as staging projects. We've also got a super exciting event coming up - stay tuned! We'll share more in our June blog.



How we can Help You


If you are looking for inspiration or need help on the following:


  • Staging

  • Property refurbishment

  • Interiors

  • Garden Landscaping

  • Property repairs

Please reach out to us at info@sortstyleandstage.com to arrange a complimentary call to learn how we can help.



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