Updating your home with painting techniques

Lighting is always part of Stern's checklist when staging a home because it can make a big difference to a space."Green" is a buzzword in real estate, and stagers are finding ways to reflect it in home designs.Make way for "lifestyle spaces" that are in better sync with how people live today.

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Still, the lighter color can offer a dramatic transformation to a kitchen at a fraction of the cost of just a minor kitchen remodel, which could average around $18,900, according to Remodeling Magazine’s 2014 Cost vs. Nearly two in three home owners say they want more color in their home, according to Sherwin-Williams' 2014 National Home Design and Color Survey of 1,450 home owners.

Stagers are using "movable colors" — bringing in on-trend color pops through toss pillows and small accents such as candles — to offer color that can easily be swapped out when sellers move out, Schwarz says.

For example, non-matching chairs around a dining table can add more visual interest to an area, Slinkey says.

End chairs may be swapped out for chairs in a contrasting style.

Paint companies have crowned purple hues the color of the year, and it's often being paired with other home accents in olive, turquoise, and light yellows.

Blue accents are also hot, such as soft indigo, bright turquoise, and darker navy.Stagers might research an area to uncover distinctive neighborhood interests that could be incorporated."We have to look at these trends and surveys and really research the buyer demographic for the home," says stager Audra Slinkey (Home Staging Resource).Stagers are devoting more attention to outdoor spaces, says staging pioneer Barb Schwarz.Nearly 63 percent of residential architects said interest in outdoor living areas is increasing, according to the 2013 American Institute of Architects' Home Design Trends survey.Schwarz's favorite green staging accents are: twigs in a vase filled with clear or white marbles; wooden pallets used to create an accent tray or coffee table; and an old bucket with a flower bouquet to decorate the front porch.

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