From http://styledstagedsold.blogs.realtor.org/2017/01/02/beige-is-back-and-theres-no-blah-about-it/ By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine Beige is pushing out gray as the hottest neutral color tone in homes heading into 2017, according to several color forecasters. Beige had once been cast aside in home design as too boring. But the beiges gaining popularity again and some of the newest shades are far from boring, if paired correctly. Beige comes in many tones, dark and light. Take a look at Sherwin-Williams’ 2017 Color of the Year: Poised Taupe (SW 6039). This brownish-gray color has plenty of contrast to help make the whites in the room pop. Many beiges are more subtle. And it is true that too much of a softer neutral tone of tans could lack the same pizzazz. How can you spice up your beiges to avoid those beige blahs? A recent article by contributor Janet Dunn with Houzz offers tips on modernizing a beige backdrop. Try bolder colored accessories. Make it pop up against higher energy colors that you bring in through accessories, like pillows, rugs, artwork, vases, or even chairs. Photo by AND Interior Design Studio – More traditional dining room ideas Weave it in with browns. Yes, beige and brown can go together in a décor scheme. Just make sure you keep the tone differences enough to add depth and variety to the shades of browns you mix.   Photo by Tara Seawright Interior Design – Search traditional living room pictures Pair it with black and white. Add the contrast of black with some white to update a beige color palette. You’ll give a room a more modern edge. Photo by Fiddlehead Design Group, LLC – Look for traditional family room design inspiration Try it with some pastels. Beachy brights, highlights of white, and pale aqua accessories or furnishings may also help to modernize up the beige walls. Photo by Caroline Burke Designs & Associates, Inc. – Look for beach style living room pictures Blend in some texture. Use a variety of textures so the neutral color backdrop doesn’t start to feel stale. For example, metallic, velvets, and natural linens can help give the beige walls a more updated feeling.  ...

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Originally published on http://realtormag.realtor.org/home-and-design/feature/article/2016/10/creative-ways-market-odd-spaces We realize that this copy targets realtors specifically, but these “marketing” strategies work because they are actually great suggestions: just because a room has always been used for one purpose does NOT mean it can’t be used for a different purpose. That’s what this article is about: re-purposing rooms to suit your needs.  OCTOBER 2016 | BY BARBARA BALLINGER What do you say to buyers who look at a listing’s floor plan only to focus on the large space labeled “dining room” that they know they’ll rarely use? The fact is, buyers and sellers may have vastly different perceptions about how they want to live in the same home. But that doesn’t have to be a deal-killer. Part of the problem stems from how architects and builders label rooms on plans, says Chicago-based commercial interior designer Mary Cook. “Rooms get designated and labeled for specific purposes, so it’s difficult to break that perception and think about them as spaces that are something else,” she says. But as a real estate professional, you can help make a difference with the descriptions you write in your marketing materials and with the way you talk about space in a listing. Clever copy can provide just the right inspiration for buyers who might have otherwise turned away. A huge log-burning fireplace dominating a living room can be recast as a “built-in entertainment center to gather around,” suggests designer Lonnie Unger of Fredman Design Group in Chicago. Just be sure to make concrete suggestions that buyers can visualize, even before they zoom in on photos or step through the front door. Whether you’re working with sellers who have outdated notions of their listing’s assets or with buyers who can’t imagine how they’d use a space that doesn’t seem to apply to their lifestyle, we’ve amassed some talking points that can help you smooth out the conflict. Here are five examples to inspire you to help your clients imagine what can be, rather than allowing what is to become a deal breaker. 1. What it is: Oversized walk-in closet The big closets that came along with the McMansion trend were often outfitted with shelves, rods, cabinets, and even storage islands and seating space. As conspicuous consumption falls out of favor, these spaces may seem like a waste for some buyers, who’d rather spend their square footage elsewhere. What it can be: “Practical laundry space adjacent to master bedroom.” Because large walk-in closets are usually well illuminated and may even have a window for daylight, they offer numerous possibilities. How about an upstairs laundry by the bedrooms? After all, this is where most...

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