Image Source: Create Expectations

So, you’ve decided to sell your home? Congratulations. Did you know that property styling can help increase your chances of getting the best possible price for your home?

“I wouldn’t put a price outcome on it, but styling allows buyers to better connect emotionally to a property and increases its overall saleability,” says Kay & Burton partner Michael Armstrong.

“We would very rarely sell a property that hasn’t been styled.  Styling is so relevant in such a competitive market. It’s crucial to the outcome.”



Source: Create Expectations

The business of styling

Kim Hallis, director of Create Expectations, is a trailblazer among property stylists. Beginning 23 years ago, this former pharmacist helped a friend style an apartment in a new development, “cut her teeth” styling two-bedroom flats and now works exclusively at the high-end styling properties that typically sell for from $5million to $15 million. Her team of stylists have a warehouse full of top-quality furniture suited to a variety of homes.

Styling an entire house costs anywhere between $8,000 and $30,000 for the duration of the sales campaign, says Kim, but Create Expectations also does partial styling.

“Sometimes we just tell people to store that sofa that the dog has chewed and bring in a few pieces. You always get a better outcome if people can feel how the furniture looks in a room.”

From trying to persuade developers that styling was a good idea in the early days, the industry has exploded. Styling is now big business and considered the norm.

Create Expectations styles between 200 and 250 properties a year across Melbourne and on the Mornington Peninsula.


Source: Kmode

“Less is more”, says Kate McKimm, founder of KMode Interiors, which offers a bespoke styling service tailored to a wide range of buyers and aimed at highlighting the property’s best features.

“We want to give people every opportunity to see themselves in the home,” she says.

Kate and her team of experienced stylists have styled properties from one-bedroom units to multi-million-dollar properties.

She likes to start with a blank canvas and add different materials from marble to timber.  White walls, neutral coloured carpets or timber floorboards are a great basis for styling your home, says Kate. Packages range from a minimum spend of $1,000 through to much bigger price tags for a complete styling of an empty home.

Greenery, fresh flowers, or even candles get the emotions going, says Kate.

“We want people to make an emotional connection with the home, We want them to walk in and feel they want to be there and see their lives there in the future.”


No Stylist: no worries

Can’t afford to bring in the stylist? Here are stylists’ tips for going it alone.

1. Clean Up
Clean every surface so that it is as fresh as sparkling as possible. This means windows, window sills, skirting boards, and floors.  The house needs to look pristine from top to bottom. Shampoo the carpet.

2. Declutter
If the mantra for real estate is location, location, location, the stylist’s slogan is declutter, declutter, declutter. Tidy your shelves, take away things that get left in front of books and buy new cushions.

Even de-cluttering those largely hidden spaces like the under-stair storage (golf clubs and old coats often live there) and cupboards under the sink will create the impression of greater space.

3. Flowers
Fresh flowers or greenery are a must.

If you do decide to spend some money on your home pre-sale you might want to paint it if it needs freshening up. The garden is another place that is often neglected. Tidy up, weed, those garden beds, mow lawns and add some new plants if the budget extends that far. Don’t forget the front porch. A sparkling entry, a freshly painted front door and pots of colourful flowers make a great welcome.