The living room is the first thing that prospective buyers see when they step into this Edina house, but an unflattering furniture arrangement, including a sofa that blocked the front entrance and a big area rug, distracted from the room's best features: gleaming hardwood floors and a fireplace flanked by built-in bookcases. "There was just too much to look at in here and unfortunately, the things that captured your attention were not the things you'd want a potential buyer to remember," said Lori Matzke of Centerstagehome.com.
She removed the rug. "Buyers are going to be much more impressed with the gleaming hardwood floors and spaciousness; that's what they came to see," Matzke said. She recommends removing all area rugs, especially if your house has a mix of carpeting and hardwood floors, except if the entire house has exposed hardwood floors. In that case, it might be a good idea to use only one.
Removed excess furniture, accessories and clutter from all the cabinets. "You never want to show a buyer cluttered shelves or they will automatically assume you are short on storage space."
A large, colorful painting and wreath above the mantel were too vibrant and out of proportion with the wall, so Matzke replaced them with two smaller prints that create interest without drawing too much attention and make the room feel more spacious.
She moved the glass cupboard 12 inches to the side to open up the visual space between the living room and dining room, and moved the sofa to the opposite wall to balance the room.
A few large, bold items, including an Indonesian bust, an inlaid chest and a large Swedish ivy, soften the mantle and draw attention to the fireplace. Fresh mums on the coffee table add elegance.
A club chair creates a seating area without blocking access into the dining room, and a coffee table helps draw more attention to the fireplace.