Realtors Sandy Chittenden and Jennifer Reddington
By Robin Jovanovich
Even in a hot real estate market, some houses simply don’t fly off the market. When that’s the case, smart realtors call in a third party — a stager, an interior designer, a friend with an eye for design — for a fresh perspective.
Rye realtors Sandy Chittenden and Jennifer Reddington each had a problematic listing. Sandy’s listing in Rye had a confusing layout and had sat on the market for 45 days. Jennifer’s listing was on a great street in Port Chester, but it was a wreck.
Both agents approached Taylor Spellman, a real estate interior architecture designer who has her own TV series, “One Week to Sell”, on HDTV. Unlike most stagers who recommend safe colors and whose designs mostly look the same, Spellman and her right-hand associate and childhood friend Kate Dickens “go full force on color and pattern and bring in a specific design.” The seller generally pays their $10,000 redesign fee and they get their money’s worth.
A lot of home improvement shows feature $500,000 makeovers, but “One Week to Sell” focuses on homes under $1,000,000 that are no more than a 45-minute commute to Manhattan.
At Sandy’s listing, Taylor and Kate not only applied a fresh coat of paint but flipped the dining and living rooms, relandscaped the front of the house, and married the inside and outside by making the dining room, deck, and yard work as one space — in six days.
“Right afterwards, showings were up 60 percent,” said Sandy. “We had a deal quickly and it was over asking.”
At the house Jennifer was trying to sell, the duo put in a kitchen island and new floor tiles. “When they were done, the sellers, an older couple, were blown away,” she said. “And they got a full price offer the following week.”
Sandy and Jennifer both had a wonderful time being on set for the filming of the makeovers. “I always wanted to be on ‘The Today Show’,” said Jennifer with a smile. “But watching a pro like Taylor is invaluable to a realtor because when she finishes a job, a home’s potential is on display.”