Home Makeover prior to selling, Denver Listing Design specialist Natalie Esquivel of Rankin Goulder Kissinger

Natalie Esquivel Brings Passion, Experience and Heart as part of RGK’s “Secret Sauce” for Sellers

Natalie Esquivel Brings Passion, Experience and Heart as part of RGK’s “Secret Sauce” for Sellers

The Profitable Makeover: How We Transform Your Denver Home For Its Maximum Sale  

January 30, 2024 - By Rankin, Goulder, Kissinger

“It is a very human, raw experience to sell your home. Whatever the seller is comfortable with and what they prefer is what we offer as a service,” Natalie Esquivel says. As the Listing Designer and also a Licensed Broker on the Rankin, Goulder, Kissinger team, Natalie brings an immense wealth of information, passion and value to our home sellers across the Denver area.
There are an estimated 20,000+ active real estate agents throughout Colorado and, not unlike any other profession, the range of experience, service and acumen varies greatly. Your home is often your most valuable asset and who you choose matters not just to your pocketbook, but also to your peace of mind. Our team aims to help with both of those matters by taking a whole picture approach to each unique situation in order to understand the goals of each seller and build from there. Our overall goal is always to support the seller in having the most successful sale of their property.

This Denver home underwent changes with paint, lighting and fixtures leading to a faster and higher home sale

This Denver home (above), recently sold by the RGK team, underwent a makeover prior to listing leading to a brighter, more marketable home.

It doesn’t take long when you meet Natalie to know that she cares deeply about what she does and that shines through every home she touches working together with Allison, Jane and Amy. We sat down with her for an in depth look at the transformational process before listing a home, a timeline of what homeowners can expect and some amazing results our team has netted. 

Bringing Empathy and Expertise

Of course every home is unique and every situation is different. Natalie says, “It really does run the gamut to prep a home for market from adjusting the furniture and getting the home show ready to digging deep and sourcing new items, game planning the most profitable repairs or projects within a specific budget and acting as a liaison with subcontractors. My hope is always that sellers start to trust the process with us. We are helping to take your very personal home and turn it into a marketable item to sell.”
To get to the heart of what makes Natalie so unique – and so valuable to our team and clients – is to know more about her. For one, Natalie grew up in Southeast Denver and is a graduate of DPS schools and Metropolitan State University so she knows the city and its neighborhoods from the eyes of a native who has watched them evolve over the years. She earned a Masters in marriage and family therapy while eventually moving on to a career in merchandising, sales and design. This distinctive background has her well-prepared for the emotional weight that moving can bring to homeowners.

Natalie Esquivel, Compass Denver

Natalie Esquivel (above) helps the Rankin, Goulder, Kissinger team of Compass Denver prepare homeowners to get their homes ready to sell.

“Moving is very stressful no matter what,” she adds. “I believe so much that the energy in your home and your surroundings really affects your mental wellbeing and your overall wellbeing. Even if you don’t realize it. Especially after COVID, people’s homes can hold a different level of attachment and selling a property is often the ‘in between’ of chapters for a homeowner.”

Natalie brings an empathetic yet practical approach to guiding sellers to potential changes or updates to the home before it hits the market. “Our team wants the best outcome of the home sale for the seller’s sake, and often the seller’s transition from a mindset of ‘personal’ to ‘marketable’ allows them to make better, less emotional decisions. Our team helps to guide them through that process. We want them to get to that next chapter. I also want potential buyers who walk through a home we’ve listed to be inspired as to how they can make the property their own as well.”

The Process

Mood Board and Home Listing Design: Compass Denver

Left: Natalie and the team help prepare a Mood Board for sellers to better visualize potential changes to the home. Right: Natalie brings that vision to life in a recent Denver home sold in 2023.

No two homes are the same, and each process is tailored to the specific goals, timeline and desires of the client. A typical timeline may look like this:

  • Walkthrough: We always start with a walkthrough with the clients. Natalie notes, “We never want to go against the bones of the house. My specific goal is to highlight what makes that home unique and work with what the home already has.”
  • Recommendation List: We will provide a list of recommendations on any potential changes, repairs or simple tasks that can be done with both marketability as well as future inspections in mind. This can include paint colors, hardware and lighting sourced by us, repairs, replacements, cleaning recommendations (such as scuffs on the walls) and a small checklist of items to remove or store for safe keeping.
  • Mood Board and Spreadsheet of Items: “A mood board often really helps people visualize the changes and the process,” she says. Natalie also provides a spreadsheet of suggested items to purchase. When asked how she would describe her design trends and goals, “We are looking for items that will be timeless within a trend…and we always look for 1-2 statement pieces that are different. We look everywhere, from local vendors and contacts to online sourcing. We may purchase something from Wayfair or Amazon but you often wouldn’t know that. We also have two storage warehouses of our own items that we are always refreshing to stay on trend.”
  • The Work Begins: Once we agree on a final list and plan, then the work starts. The items are ordered and sellers are given options on contractors and preferred partners if any physical works is required. “We look to figure out the best gameplan for the situation and how we can be most helpful to our sellers. We don’t have a crystal ball, and although the market in Denver has shifted a bit, I firmly believe you’re going to get more money and sell quicker than you would have had we not gone through this process,” Natalie maintains. Timelines of recent projects have ranged from 2-7 weeks.
  • Staging: “If they’re living in it and it doesn’t make sense to completely transform it, we style the home. Otherwise, we stage it. We add a lot more detail than a ‘regular’ staging company ever does. It usually takes two days to fully stage a property. At the end of day one, often we’ll be about 80% done as we are preparing the home but I always like to go back in with a fresh eye as we’re always adding accessories and final touches.” She laughs, “Sometimes we’ve got to put on some sprinkles and frosting.”
  • The Sale: While it’s important to note that no results can ever be guaranteed, the changes our team has made to a home — in addition to the service, experience and knowledge of the team partners throughout the selling process — are certain to bring a better result no matter the current market condition. Here are some recent Denver homes we sold that have undergone this process:
    • 401 Adams Street: Listed: $1,375,000. Sold: $1,700,000 ($325,000 over ask price)
    • 1575 Perry Street: Listed: $1,095,000. Sold: $1,300,000 ($205,000 over ask price)
    • 3526 Urban Street: Bought: $385,000 (2014). Listed: $849,000. Sold: $1,025,000 ($176,000 over ask price)
    • 2900 N. Vine Street: Bought: $800,000 (2017). Listed: $1,200,000. Sold: $1,311,000 ($111,000 over ask price)
    • 10315 Chatfield Drive. Bought: $575,000 (2014). Listed: $1,375,000. Sold: $1,700,000 ($325,000 over ask price)
    • 1065 Race Street: Listed: $1,850,000. Sold: $1,950,000 ($100,000 over ask price) 

Before and After photo of Denver listing prior to market, is it worth it to stage?

With some expert care and creativity, this primary bedroom showed off its full potential to Denver home buyers.

The Reward

While the amount of money our clients net is the ultimate goal, Natalie also finds joy in the process and transformation. “Our biggest compliment is when someone asks if the home is staged because they can’t tell.”
While what the team does is sell homes, really the team is in the people business. We are dedicated to helping people open the door to their dreams through real estate and making the process as stress-free as possible. The impressive results we've achieved for our clients reflect the effectiveness of our approach, showcasing our commitment to excellence in the real estate market and it goes far beyond the closing table.

Here's a recent review from our sellers Delanie and John: "We cannot recommend Natalie and Allison enough. They supported and guided us in getting our home ready to sell! From walking through the whole property and process with us to making a repairs punch list, providing a spreadsheet of fixtures and finishes, meeting contractors, and dealing with deliveries, Allison and Natalie were so helpful and accommodating! The staging process was super smooth, and they did a great job honoring the house we called home for 20 years while using their knowledge of the market and buyers' tastes to make it an easy sell. We had multiple offers within 48 hours and closed well above asking within three weeks. Hire them!"
“One of the greatest pieces of feedback I receive is when a seller says, ‘Why didn’t I do this to my home sooner?’” Natalie says. “We have even helped several clients with the design and styling of their new homes that they purchase because they’ve loved our recommendations and work so much. We really work to earn that trust as advisors and we truly have people’s best interest at heart.”
Empathy. Dedication. Experience. 
Natalie embodies these attributes, making her an invaluable part of our team and a trusted partner on your journey to a successful and profitable home sale. 
Together, with Allison Rankin, Jane Goulder, or Amy Kissinger and the power of Compass – Denver’s leading brokerage – we possess the experience, resources, and relationships to assist you. Whether you're considering buying or selling anywhere in the Denver area, reach out to us today!

Rankin Goulder Kissinger team helps Denver home sellers prepare home for market

The Rankin Goulder Kissinger team specializes in buying and selling Denver homes. Top row (L to R): Amy Kissinger, Jane Goulder, Allison Rankin. Bottom Row (L to R): Ryan Seeb, Jessica Asherin, Natalie Esquivel.

Denver home - is it worth it to stage?

525 Vine Street, listed in February 2024 by Rankin Goulder Kissinger is a beautifully appointed home in Washington Park.

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