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Day 45: Good looks go a long way

January 4, 2012

Abby Albers is a busy girl. At one time, we were super pals. But now she works for J&H Oil. She makes jewelry. And she recently opened her second store, Found, a repurposed furniture and vintage clothing store on Cherry Street. Thank goodness for Facebook; it doesn’t feel like it’s been a year and a half since I’ve seen her. It was great to finally catch up with my friend over curry soup today.

Turns out Found also stages empty homes. Home decor is not my fortĂ©; neither is imagining myself in an empty home. For people like me, seeing furniture really goes a long way. In fact, I’ve even been through a bunch of homes that are decorated so blandly that it’s hard for me to imagine living there. Same goes for the places that hold mounds of clutter. Dirty walls, floors and cupboards are a real turn off, too. It’s hard to imagine myself living here when I’m surrounded by someone else’s filth.

My realtor posted a few words of advice for selling your home last month. If you’re thinking about putting your house up for sale, it’s definitely worth it to whip your house into shape, as he put it. In a buyer’s market, people are picky. And after looking at nearly 80, I can definitely agree with what he has to say. A messy home makes me question what else isn’t being taken care. And for every unkempt home, there’s another one that looks loved, which helps me to fall in love. Had I known I’d be nearing 100 homes, I may have tried to look beyond the junk a bit earlier. But I didn’t. And I don’t think my thought process is too unique.

If you’re selling your home, do yourself a favor. Box up the junk. Scrub your home so it shines like the top of the Chrysler building. Light a few candles. Take Dan’s advice. And if you’re interior-design inept, like me, find a friend or hire someone like Found to give your home a mini face lift. (I know you guys stage empty homes, Abby, but I’d totally pay someone like you to work with what I have to make my house sale-cute.)

And if you still don’t trust me…. well, I was a week away from closing on a well-decorated home. In hindsight, there wasn’t an ounce of structural charm, which is what I’ve been on the prowl for. Looks don’t mean everything, but they sure do help.

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