Home Tours | Staging Success: 1500 Garden Street
Written by: Dena Landon
Photography by: Robert Socha
When Sarah and Mike Mitchell called Kaja Bolton to stage and list their apartment, they weren’t sure if they wanted to sell or rent it. “We were open to both,” Sara explains. They’d already moved into a larger place to accommodate their growing family, so Kaja had a completely empty apartment to stage.
With the apartment ready to show, it rented within three days to a family for $8,200 a month. That was $1,000 more a month than the similar sized apartment across the hall rented for with partial city views in the same timeframe.
For her part, Kaja says that she loves staging an empty place. “It was fun because it gave me free rein of going whatever direction I wanted to,” Kaja says. Her first goal was to showcase how large the living space was since she knew it was most likely a family who’d come live there.
To highlight the open space, Kaja put in furniture in very neutral colors so buyers or renters would see the apartment rather than the furniture. Low furniture worked to show off the ceiling height, and the custom artwork distracted from the apartment’s only negative feature – a view that looked out on the back of a garage.
The Mitchell’s were impressed at how Kaja “brought it all together so nicely and in such a fast amount of time,” Sarah marvels, “As soon as we moved out, she had her people in there within days.” But, to make it happen, Kaja had to get resourceful. She went on a borrowing spree.
Adding personality to a staged space is important to Kaja because “I think if buyers just see a vacant space, it’s hard for them to envision living there.” Short on time, but still wanting to add lived-in touches, Kaja tossed a sequin heart pillow from her daughter’s bedroom into the mix and added a stuffed swan on a bedroom wall. Books like Charlotte’s Web, which she and her daughter had read together, helped visitors picture themselves reading to their own children in bed.
When the barstools she’d ordered didn’t come in fast enough, Kaja darted across the hall and borrowed some from a neighbor.
Thrilled with the results she produced for them, the Mitchells recommend Kaja’s services to homeowners who want to rent or sell in a short time frame. They felt completely comfortable leaving their place in her capable hands.
Whatever your real estate goals, staging attracts your target audience and helps them envision living in a place.