What is it about a model home that entices potential buyers? Some might think it's the way the pillows lay or the fabulous furniture that adorns the spaces, but effective model merchandising goes deeper than aesthetics. It's about the understanding of the prospective homeowner's desires and demands as well as the execution of portraying them, not only in the furniture, art and accessories, but in the detailed planning of the floor layout. As a merchandiser, we've developed five design features that should be addressed when merchandising a model home to assist with successful sales.
Scale and Space Planning:
Knowing how the potential buyer might typically use or envision each room and space is important to understand before diving into design. A home's flex space might be best used as a study or reading room for the active adult buyer, while a growing family might use the space as a craft or play room. Once objectively figuring out each room's function, furniture placement and the size of each piece is vital. Positioning the furniture perfectly and scaling the pieces appropriately promotes good flow and enhances the size of the space.
Thoughtful Design Details:
Every home needs personality, but more importantly, a personality that accurately portrays the prospective buyer. This begins with researching and gaining extensive knowledge about the potential buyer and their wants and needs, as well as the location. From there, subtle design details that depict the buyers' hobbies and the home's location create positive memory points. This could be pictures of a nearby landmark, thoughtful coffee table books about the surrounding areas, or even a themed child's room pertaining to activities offered in the community.
Creative Use of Color:
Color is an effective and inexpensive way to transform the look and energy of a room, so be sure to consider how you want visitors to feel when touring the home. Lighter shades create an open, airy and calming feel, giving the illusion of a larger space. Bolder colors can create a vivid effect and vibe when used in a smaller setting. In a larger space, dark or bright paint colors draw the eye to focus on a particular feature or architectural element. Accent colors or designs on walls, ceilings, doors or shelving are all unique areas to add a daring and dramatic effect.
Lighting, Lighting and Lighting:
Seize the opportunity to let interiors shine! Simple solutions such as keeping windows clear of bulky furniture, not allowing drapery to move too far into window space and keeping blinds open will add loads of natural light and make a room look brighter and bigger. Decorative lighting, such as floor lamps or table lamps, can pack a punch by creating character or highlighting a unique piece of art or accessory. And, as far as overhead lighting – don't skimp!
Design that is "too trendy" can cause potential homeowners to shy away as they develop a natural fear that the home isn't meant for them or their family. Along with recognizing this, buyers do demand updates and would like newer features within the interiors. Finding the balance between "new" and "too new" can be a challenge, but if the design succeeds at incorporating timeless trends or eclectic touches, it evokes a sense of safety, while still feeling edgy.
As an interior designer and model merchandiser, it's vital to work hand-in-hand with the builder to fully understanding the demands and desires of the target demographic. With this and these five features in mind, the design will resonate with prospective buyers, which in turn leads to successful sales!