What are the punch list essentials to take a house from long-term rental to a near immediate sale? Northern Realty Group agent Lisa Logan was presented with just this dilemma. Of course, it’s helpful if the listing is in Ryan Place, where demand remains insanely strong and inventory persistently low.
Here is another useful stroke – have a seasoned construction engineer in the family who has worked on some of the highest profile residential projects in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, like the most expensive house for sale in North Texas. (Hint: one of the two billionaire Andy Beal is said to be shopping.) Meet Project 2509 Willing Avenue, a 2,200-square-foot, three-bedroom, two-bath, 1919 Craftsman. The home just needed some interior refreshing.
“I can’t emphasize the importance of something as basic as a good paint job,” begins Lisa’s husband Shanon Logan. “Just removing the accumulated layers of years of bad paint work and starting fresh does a great deal to improve a first impression.”
This is evident immediately upon entering. Ralph Lauren Suede paint has been used to mask imperfections in the plaster of a vestibule created from a front porch. Also banished are a set of random closets that closed in the space. A pair of French doors, a salvage yard find, lead into the living room.
The living room before-and-after, is one of the most dramatic, at least for me. Considered use of color and finish have rationalized, harmonized, and seemingly expanded the room. This is most obvious on the fireplace wall, formerly a confusing composition of red brick meeting contrasting white trim and wall color. Seeming to retreat behind all that, and terribly under noticed, were the charming stained glass windows.
By painting brick, insert shelving and trim the same white, all are tied together as a unit which, of course, they are.
Voila the stained glass windows come out of hiding.
The bead board ceiling partially stripped, warms up the room and echoes the appealing beige of the walls. A similar clean-up improves the dining room.
The jarring red wainscot now painted white, ties in with the trim throughout the house and a similar wall color complements the living room it adjoins. Shanon has been clever in subtly altering in tonality of the house’s palette, taking into consideration varying light.
“When you entered the living room, you could look all the way through to the washer and dryer,” says Shanon.
Now doors and a clever dryer screen returns rooms to their unique purpose without losing the open feel. A chaotic hall leading to the bedrooms with furr downs and doors swinging the wrong way has also been brought to heel. Wherever possible, period fixtures from Old Home Supply, replace later generic accretions.
My favorite design detail — an attractive dropped panel concealing an HVAC return.
“I think buyers come to an older house with high expectations and a high level of fear.” observes real estate agent Lisa Logan. “They want long-term appeal with a minimum of up-front expense.”
Happily, in addition to the cosmetic upgrades, the sort of “uh-oh,” scary, un-quantifiables likely to turn up on an inspection report, or cause future grief to a buyer (like a leaking roof, a separating wall, and drainage problem), have all been dealt with. Spouses can be so handy. Priced at $299,000, this home is an incredible value per square foot in the current market. Catch it if you can.
Also catch the open house on Dec. 6, which corresponds with the beautiful Ryan Place Candlelight Tour.
Listing agent is Lisa Mosier Logan, Northern realty Group