First Impressions count! An entryway whether it is a foyer or mudroom, is the gateway to your homes interior, and begins setting up the all important first impression in the mind of the homebuyer.
What you want to do is start the buyer off on the right foot. One way of doing this is to make the entryway special. It is a bit tricky because you do not spend a great deal of time in the area, and when that is coupled with it being such a busy place, you may not of noticed that it doesn’t have the most current look.
Let’s start with the floor since that is the first thing a home buyer will see when they enter your home. Here are some questions you should ask yourself. What shape is the floor in? When was it put down? Generally an entryway floor that has had a lot of foot traffic over the years may not be in great shape. If it looks worn it is definitely worth updating or upgrading. It is a small area and would be worth the investment.
How about the rug, do you have one and what shape is that in? Does it need to be replaced? You can get an economical one at a local home improvement store, such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, or Pottery Barn, which by the way runs some great sales. The next set of questions should be focused around lighting. Is it bright and welcoming? Remember sometimes your home may be shown in the evening, but even daytime showings should be bright and inviting. Check the bulbs, make sure they are all working, dust the chandelier make sure the shades are clean or on second thought does the fixture need to be updated altogether?
Like any other room in the house what we are going for is a sparkling, clean, decluttered environment. Since this area gets so much traffic, it tends to get dirty quickly especially when you are trekking the outdoors in. Ask yourself does the area need a fresh coat of paint? Or just some touch up? Make sure to thoroughly clean the threshold, shine the doorknob, and the switch plate.
Now on to decluttering, in most homes the entryway is the drop all, catch all area, cluttered with shoes, mail, coats, and keys. Remove all of it; keep the area open and spacious. Remember that when a house is being shown there could be a lot of people coming in all at the same time, beside from the realtor and the homebuyers, who may have family with them as well, your objective here is that you don’t want the entryway to feel cramped. If there are lots of coats hanging on hooks, remove them, if you do not have a coat closet leave a couple hooks, with no more then two jackets on them. If shoes are piled up on top of each other remove them and place neatly in a closet. If you do have a closet in the entryway make sure it is well organized and is only partially full. You do not want the homebuyer to feel that there is not enough storage in the house. As far as your keys and mail, get rid of the junk mail and put away needed mail and keys in a near by drawer.
Okay you have cleaned and decluttered. If it was needed you updated or upgraded flooring and lighting, now what? Let’s take a closer look at what else to add to the area so that your entryway signals to the homebuyer that your house is worth every penny of the asking price. Think simple and elegant, keeping the décor neutral, and remember you are looking to appeal to the broadest spectrum of homebuyers. Here are some other tips, focusing on the design elements that will help create the proper style impression of your entryway. A foyer table is a must, it could be long and narrow, or could be half round, these are some of the design decisions you will be making based on the size and shape of the area, adding a small lamp with a welcoming glow, will warm up the area. A mirror in the right proportion and style set above the table sends the right entryway message, adding a spatial and light reflective element as well. An easy on the eyes painting or print could be another choice above the console. If your entryway is large enough to handle a bench or chair without crowding the area, add one. Keep in mind though to co-ordinate it so that it works with the style of your table, lighting and flooring. Beside from the bench adding welcoming touches, it also signals that the area is large enough to sit down and put on a pair of shoes. A vase with fresh flowers adds color, charm and a fragrant signal. Speaking of fragrance, smell is an extremely important element to the way a homebuyer will react to your home, especially in entryways, make sure the first impression is pleasing. Fragrant flowers, is a lot easier then baking an apple pie, but if you have the time to bake one an apple pie will help give your home a warm, and welcoming fragrance.
Photos courtesy of HGTV
photo 1 Eleanor Jones
photo 2 Speck
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