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21 Oct 2021

10 Tips On Styling an Older Property for Market

If you’ve recently completed a renovation on an older ‘doer-upper’ and you’re struggling to style it for the market, look no further. In this article, Lauren Maylor, Creative Director at LOFT, offers her top tips on styling your home to its full potential.

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1. Match the furniture with the property

Normally, the advice is to save as much money as possible on furniture without skimping on quality, but high-end pieces buck the trend.

If a property is being sold with a high valuation, convenient but cheap furniture packs should be avoided. No one that is investing heavily in a property will want those kinds of furniture pieces.

That does not just mean buying a slightly more expensive furniture pack instead. Rather, pieces should be sourced that fit the bill entirely in terms of style, durability, practicality and cost. In short, properties must provide great value for money where furniture and the interior design ooze high quality, or potential buyers will go elsewhere.

2. Find the right style

A contemporary look is a popular choice for luxury properties, but it is not to everyone’s taste. Before sourcing any furniture or designing the interior, it is vital to understand who the potential buyers for the property are and what style and design they will be interested in.

Statement pieces make a property stand out, but don’t overdo things. Keep the overall feel homely yet cool. Walking into a beautifully-styled space can evoke positive emotions, and help instil a desire for a buyer to live in that space. As such, it can often drive up the price if multiple people can picture themselves owning the property.

3. Using sustainable materials

The topic of sustainability is one that is continuing to become more impactful, and this is filtering through to interior design.

There are always new and innovative ways to reduce carbon footprints and limit the effect we have on the world around us. By working with interior professionals and suppliers, properties can have sustainably-sourced materials and pieces that are still fit for purpose and improve their sustainability credentials.

4. Make sure everything has a function

Style without substance is pointless. A beautiful table with a crystal top may look nice, but if a coffee cup cannot be put down on it, then it is impracticable and probably not suitable for the space being designed.

Furnishings have to do more than look pretty. Each piece needs to have a purpose and add to the space it is in. When thinking about style, remember it is the little things that make a house a home. Cosy lighting, a few house plants, a vase full of bright and vibrant flowers; it all goes a long way in making the property feel like the ideal home.

5. Go with quality

What is defined as quality is usually up for interpretation, but when furnishing a property for the high-end market, it is a straightforward concept.

A high-quality piece of furniture not only looks the part, but is built to last. These items are hard to find — especially at a great price. Not only are interior designers best placed to find these pieces, but they can usually get them at a much better cost, as suppliers recognise that they get a lot of high-end custom through having a great working relationship with industry professionals.

At LOFT, we have worked on properties across the country where all items are hand selected by our team of highly-experienced interior designers with a wealth of knowledge on home staging and property presentation. This extra attention to detail can be the fine line between selling a property with ease and having it unsold for months while listed.

6. Go back to nature

Biophilic designs are becoming ever more popular by the day. The positive impact of surrounding ourselves with nature on our mental health has seen this trend surge in popularity over the past year.

Studies show that plants help reduce stress and anxiety, and they improve our cognitive abilities. But they have another key function, which is helping to maximise space in small areas. House plants are great for adding depth and character to a room, softening corner spaces and convincing the eye into thinking there is more room than there really is.

Incorporating nature into the property that will be renovated is a good way to maximise space and show that wellbeing has been a design consideration for those looking at buying the property.

7. Let there be light

Natural light is integral to interior design and highlighting focal points within a property. Sunlight is great for making a space feel less confined and can help lift the mood of a room. Sunlight is thought to increase the amount of serotonin released in the body, helping to make a person feel calm and focused.

When designing a property, it is important to find ways of introducing as much natural light as possible to improve mental health. This could mean installing large windows, bi-fold doors or skylights and placing furniture, such as a sofa or desk, in a place where it can catch the most light.

8. Flexible design and flexible living

As a result of the recent lockdowns, there has become an increased desire to live in spaces that are functional, flexible and, ultimately, support our changing day-to-day emotions and needs.

The rise of co-living and the need for creating more flexible interior spaces should be thought about when designing spaces in properties that can be adapted around the resident.

Using bookcases or small, open shelves is an easy way to create a visible divide in a part of a room, while still looking stylish. Sofas and seating areas can also be used to create a ‘border’ around an area in an easy and flexible way.

At LOFT, we have been working on designing and furnishing a variety of flexible living spaces, and we are seeing more and more residential builds incorporating these new ‘borders’ to make the most of each space.

9. Look for inspiration

Often, it can be easy to go with the easy design that takes the least effort. However, when selling a property and trying to secure the highest return, that can often be the worst thing to do.

Design inspiration can be found all around, whether it is seeing a breathtaking location, visiting a gallery or museum, or just experimenting with our own homes. Inspiration comes from the human experience and how we interact with the world. When creating interiors for a property, always have it in our minds that they should enhance living for the people who live there – that is the key.

10. Ask the experts

Ultimately, if you are not sure about how you should be renovating your property to maximise its value, you should be asking for expert advice. The fees that you will pay for the services of an interior design expert will be recouped once you sell the property.

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