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Home Staging Company of the Year 2024

What an incredible honour it is to confirm that we've been awarded Home Staging Company of the Year 2024. This would not be possible without the dedication of our team and our amazing clients. Thank you. To learn more about this, some of our latest projects and the housing news, read below.


Home Staging Company of the Year


The Corporate Livewire Prestige Awards recognise small and medium-sized businesses that have proven to be the best in their market over the past 12 months. The judging panel choose the winners by looking at service excellence, quality of the product / service provided, innovative practices, value, ethical or sustainable methods of working, as well as consistency in performance. Winners are selected based on their their strengths in these areas.


For the last three years, we've won their regional Home Staging Compan of the Year, Londong and South East so it is absolutely fabulous to be recognised as a UK wide champion of Home Staging Company of the Year 2024. We're looking forward to sharing our award when we collect it during the summer - more on that to follow.




Our founder, Ceri says:


"I'm delighted that we have achieved this prestigious national award in recognition of our continued high quality services. We are in our sixth year of trading and achieving such accoloades is the icing on the cake! This success would not be possible without my incredible team and our incredible clients."

2 Bedroom Apartment, Twickenham


Our client has a fabulous apartment in the Richmond Estate overlooking Richmond Bridge and the Thames. They had let it on a long term rental then decided to sell. Although the apartment has high end finishes, it struggled to sell - this is because it was empty. We know that 80% of buyers to struggle to visualise how they will live in an empty property.


Our client were recommended our services by Savills.


Here's the result of our services ... a high end home that is bright and welcoming.




The secondary bedroom had an Italian bespoke built in unit which has shelving as well as a desk which turns into a bed. Here's a fascinating fact, these type of beds are called Murphy beds after its invetor William Lawrence Murphy. In the 1900s, Murphy was wooing an opera singer and living in a 1 bed apartment in San Franciso. The moral code of the time frowned upon a woman entering a man's bedroom. Therefore Murphy's invention converted his bedroom into a parlor, enabling him to entertain!


We decided to present this room as a bedroom given the ease of being able to show buyers that it has the additionally flexibility of being able to be used as a home office or study.


We fully dressed the remainder of the spaces, including the terrace overlooking the Thames. We're delighted to confirm that this fabulous two bedroom apartment in Twickenham is now sold. We're over the moon for our clients.


Our client says:


"An excellent service.
Very efficient and with continual feedback on what is happening. The dressing of the flat was modern and bright with various drapes etc which show a homely touch."

Rear Garden, Wokingham


Our client has recently moved into their new build home and they were recommended our services to transform a mosly lawned garden into a tranquil oasis.



Here's the garden before we started ...



To help our clients visualise our design ideas, we took a photo of the garden and then virtually renovated it digitally. This allows our clients to see the vision we have without physically doing any works. Here's what this looked like.


Take a look at the transformation at night - let us know what you think.



We will sharing our case study very soon.


Air BnB, Windsor


One of our latest clients is based in Windsor. They have a two bedroom apartment which is a stone's throw from Windsor Castle and the river Thames. They reached out for our help to transform their apartment into a fully functioning Air BnB.


As part of our detailed consultation, it was obvious that this location and also the apartment itself will be a very successful Air BnB business. However, our skill set means that our client will be able to maximise their rental yield. We've come up with an action plan of repairs and ways to add value to the apartment so guests have the best all round experience, including re-siting the washing machine and adding a sofa bed to increase the number of guests who can stay. We've also prepared mood boards of how the rooms will be presented - take a look at the living area in the open plan.



We're also helping our client with modernising a two bedroom apartment they are intending to live in Eton.


Housing News


Rightmove


Rightmove report that the first four months of 2024 are much improved compared to the same period in 2023. Average new seller asking prices have risen by 1.1% in April, equal to +£4,207. This means the average housing value now stands at £372,324, a substantial monthly price increase, although this in line with the ten-year average for this time of year. A key driving factor behind this growth towards a near-record average asking price is the largest homes, called "top-of-the-ladder". This sector is seeing its strongest start to a year for price growth since 2014.


Estate agents report that despite the rise in prices and general sense of greater optimism, high mortgage rates are unsurprisingly continuing to stretch affordability for the typical buyer. The market remains very price-sensitive and operates at different speeds across its many segments and areas.


Source: Rightmove


Looking over a longe period, the pricing trend is currently on an upward trajectory.

Rightmove's, Tim Bannister, says:


"The top-of-the-ladder sector continues to drive pricing activity at the start of the year, with movers in this sector typically less sensitive to higher mortgage rates, and more equity rich, contributing to their ability to move. While some buyers, across all sectors, will feel that their affordability has improved compared to last year due to wage growth and stable house prices, others will be more impacted by cost-of-living challenges and stickier than expected high mortgage rates. Despite these factors, it has been a positive start to the year in comparison to the more muted start to 2023. However, agents report that the market remains very price-sensitive, and despite the current optimism, these are not the conditions to support substantial price growth.
Sellers who are keen to secure their sale will still need to price realistically for their local market and avoid being overambitious at the start of marketing to give themselves the best chance of finding a buyer."

Learn more here.



Zoopla


Zoopla report that property prices have risen +0.1% compared to March and fallen by -0.2% (£410) compared to a twelve months ago. They report that the housing market is more balanced than at any time since before the pandemic. In turn, they expect this will give more people the chance to move in 2024, so long as those selling remain realistic on pricing.


There are 12% more sales compared to 12 month ago, with the number of agreed sales higher than the same time last year. Zoopla indicate that the sales pipeline ie. the number of homes moving through the sale process, is also rebuilding. This comes after a period of fewer sales due to mortgage hikes in 2022 and 2023. Their

data shows that the housing market is on track for 1.1 million sales in 2024, a 10% increase on 2023. Annual house sales pre-pandemic sales levels stood at 1 million per year, so this is a very good sign of activity.


Mortgage approvals are increasing and in line with pre-pandemic levels, with 32% more mortgage approvals in February 2024 compared to twelve months earlier.

Zoopla indicate that they believe that base rates have peaked and consumer confidence is on the up. However mortgage costs for typical buyers are still much higher than 3 years ago. When you compare a sub-2% mortgage rate from March 2021 to the current 4.5% average, the annual mortgage cost jumps from £7,100 to £11,400 - a 61% increase.


Zoopla's latest consumer research shows that a 1/3 of households that want to move are now looking outside their local area to secure their next home at the right price. Learn more here.


Sharing Our Knowledge


We're members of Titan's a fabulous property community and recently Ceri was asked to share her expertise on all things relating to preparing your property for sale and letting. The audience included landlords, developers, investors (short term and long term) so Ceri had a great time showing them how to add more value to their respective property portfolios.


We're working on the launch of a further initiatve about preparing your property for sale. If you'd like to register for this event, reach out to info@sortstyleandstage.com.


Our Partners


Our clients place lots of trust in us. To achieve the results we do, we have a trusted set of partners that we work with. Learn more about our trusted partners here. We're constantly adding new partners and take a look at some of our partners here.


We've added a number of new businesses recently, including Lesley's Curtains. She and her team are always there when we are designing window dressings for our clients. Their attention to detail is second to none.

What are we up to in May?


We've got various projects underway including preparing a client's home for sale, staging, interiors and garden landscaping. Here's a sneak peek of one of our projects - this client has been struggling to sell so stay tuned to see the transformation ...



We're Here to Help


No matter what type of project you have in mind, we're here to help with:


  • home staging

  • virtual staging

  • interiors

  • landscaping


and much more.


If you need help with any property related matter, do reach out to us on info@sortstyleandstage.com.



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