The last time that we spoke with Megan Callahan of Trim Design Interiors we learned how a move from Houston back home to St. John’s uncovered an amazing talent for interior design that Megan never realized she had.
We follow up with this Business Analyst and motocross enthusiast turned Interior Designer as she continues to build solid relationships with realtors and clients alike who see their homes sold efficiently and quickly thanks to the help of Trim Design Interiors services.
Megan Callahan’s entrepreneurial journey started when she and her oil worker husband moved back home to Newfoundland from Texas. Megan a former business analyst at PAL Aerospace with a background in accounting was getting ready to sell their house in Houston, Texas. “I thought our house looked perfect. But our amazing realtor Robyn Jones told us we needed to stage the home and that is when I learned what staging was,” she said.
Anyone that has ever had to relocate for their job or business or sell a home for any reason knows the amount of effort that goes into the process. You need to find a real estate agent to sell your home and maybe another one to find you a home where you are moving or relocating to. Then you must try and keep your home clean while showings take place while trying to pack and get ready to move at the same time or in some cases you may have to move before the house even sells.
Megan understands the difficulties of moving, and the various benefits home staging can have on clients in the world of buying and selling. “The purpose of staging is to get homes sold for the highest dollar value with the lowest time spent on the market,” she said. When she first began after moving home, she was staging and offering her services for friends and family, and it was working out really well. “I’d always enjoyed interior decorating, and I really got to explore that,” said Megan.
Megan soon realized that her talents were far more creative than she ever imagined, plus with three kids, having her own staging and design consulting company allowed her to work her own schedule to spend time with her kids, while giving her the opportunity to help people, which she loves.
“When people are trapped in the hustle-and-bustle of buying and selling homes and the stress that goes along with it, we hope to be a breath of fresh air. We can maximize space, showcase the home and show its full potential.”
For Megan the biggest part of the business is currently consultations, set up through real estate agents.
During these consultations she will do a room-by-room walkthrough, explaining to the homeowner exactly what needs to be done to showcase the house.
Megan offers two types of consultations:
- Staging Consultation– These types of consultations are more of a DIY tutorial for the seller. The staging consultation consists of a thorough tour of the home, complete with an in-depth discussion to point out areas to accentuate what will make the home most appealing to potential buyers. The homeowner is given a detailed to-do list to complete before real estate photos as this is a perfect way to kickstart a DIY home staging project. Suggestions will include household improvements, furniture rearrangement plus removal, colour schemes, and curb appeal.
- Home Design Consultation – This type of consultation is more about a fresh start, so whether you have either purchased a new home or you’re looking for a refresh of your current home, it is time to mix things up! We all know that we have seen a lot of the inside of our home over the past year with COVID-19 restrictions and Megan offers a home design consultation to get you on your way to a new look for your living space. This service consists of an in-home discussion with the homeowners to understand their lifestyle, likes and dislikes. Megan will then outline a design plan, focusing on key areas and features, colour schemes, and furniture selection and (re)arrangement.
Megan said when talking about her consultation services, “We work with the homeowner’s furniture to make things look amazing. We declutter, streamline, and make every room show ready. The most important part of my business is making homes look great.”
Megan also offer’s what we call traditional ‘real estate staging.’
When a house is vacant, it can be difficult to see the full potential of an empty space. No matter how nice a house may be, without depth and emotion, a house may not have that ‘dream home’ feeling to buyers. This is where Megan and her team at Trim Design Interiors comes in, they will perform the full staging of the house to maximize the interest from potential buyers. What is meant by a full staging you may ask? Well, they supply all the furniture, wall art, accent pieces and the muscle to turn a house into a home for a potential buyer. The result, as you can see from the photos, will maximize the space, showcase the layout, and highlight the selling features.
Want to take advantage of Trim Design’s services but have put your plans on hold because of concerns around the pandemic. Well Trim Design Interiors follow all health guidelines and protocols however, if you are still not feeling comfortable, they also offer virtual consultations and stagings. Thanks to the marvels of innovation, Megan will take your photos and measurements of your vacant home and using their virtual staging program, ‘stage’ the selected rooms with virtual furniture and accents.
On the design side, Megan is focused on helping people bring their ideas to fruition. The goal is to make the final product one a homeowner will love every time they walk into the room. Everybody knows what they like but putting it together and making everything flow can be a more difficult task. That is where Trim Design comes in. On the staging side, Megan strives to give each home the added touch that creates a welcoming and inspirational experience for buyers, which showcases the home, and shows off its full potential. “The fact that I could help people in these areas as my job was a dream come true,” said Megan.
Megan’s approach is simple, “We catch the home-owners’ vibes, and if they’re willing, we roll up our sleeves and get to work. If not, we go for a measured approach. There’s a way to make staging work for everyone.”
Megan and her Trim Design Team are an extension of the real estate agents they strategize with, and they try to make everything work in tandem. They work as a team to get each home sold for the homeowner. “The realtors I work with are nothing short of amazing. They have a certain entrepreneurial spark about them that continuously inspires me to grow and succeed as a business owner. My realtor clients are driven, they care deeply about their clients (homeowners), and they don’t need sleep. A winning combination of traits!” Megan goes on to say, “Teamwork is an integral part of this business, from Trim Design to the real estate agent to the home-owner. We make sure we’re on the same page as the agents, and we all have the goal to get the house sold.”
For Megan and her team, this is not just a job it is personal. Megan treats each customer like she did her friends and family when she first got into the business and puts all of her focus into helping you sell your home or transfer a house into your ‘forever home.’ “I’m excited if a house that’s been on the market for a long time sells quickly after our work. We hope our work helps get the job done,” said Megan.
Megan tells Spotlight that her favorite projects are the tough ones! “From time to time, we’ll have a homeowner who needs the extra push to get through the staging list for their occupied home. Those ones take a lot of realtor-stager team effort. The home usually has amazing potential, but there is a large to-do list in order to get it to reach that potential. This list does not consist of high dollar renos. It does generally mean a lot of hands-on work; decluttering, moving furniture, painting, etc. In many cases, the homeowner doesn’t initially see the benefit of the changes and feels the house is perfect the way it is. Oftentimes, homeowners don’t have the time to put in or the space to store excess items. With the right realtor-stager team effort, and a lot of TLC, we’ll always get the picture-perfect real estate listing and then the sold sign! Those projects are close to my heart and I burst with pride when it all works out. No greater sign of success than when a homeowner can move on to the next chapter of their life.
So as you can see whether it’s washing floors, dealing with clients, or doing walk-throughs, Megan and her team are ready, willing and able to help you every step of the way.
In this businesses and industry reputation is everything, to the point that Megan often gets asked about her formal training. She has none, but her business and reviews from clients allow her to draw on word-of-mouth. Megan spends much of her free time studying industry trends and design style. She works hard to stay on top of leading trends and styles. The future of her business depends on strong recommendations and her solid reputation of getting the job done.
Megan is quick to say, “This is a business, and if people aren’t happy, word will get around. I want people to be happy with their end result with Trim Design.”
Let’s just say that Megan and the team at Trim Design have been very busy, especially in the market conditions that we saw in 2020 and that carried over to 2021. Thankfully, she still has enough time to share advice and tips of the trade each month with her monthly column “Design of the Times” here in Spotlight on Business Magazine.
by Lee Ann Atwater