Devoted Selling Sunset fans already know that the only thing hotter than Mary Fitzgerald’s French husband is her real estate career at the Oppenheim Group, the real estate brokerage at the center of the hit Netflix series. Fitzgerald is one of the cast’s biggest closers, a veteran of the firm, and the agent of choice to celebrity clients like Taye Diggs.
Ahead of Selling Sunset's Season 3 premier on Friday, August 7, we caught up with Fitzgerald about all things real estate. She shared her tips for selling a home quickly and choosing a paint color for staging, plus the most opulent (and odd) things she's seen at a real estate showing. Here's what she had to say.
- Can't wait til August? Check out our list of the 35 best Netflix series to watch in July.
You've sold a lot of homes, so you've probably seen some interesting things. What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen in someone’s home?
Just recently, the other day I was showing a home to a client, and right when we walked in and the first thing we saw were all these weird heads over the walls, which was a bit much, then we also noticed cameras under the beds trying to watch us. My client was just like, “Let’s go, I can’t do it!” It was so bizarre.
But another one was this 30 million dollar listing that had a ballroom with stripper poles in it. It also had this bed that was absolutely huge. We kept joking that it shouldn’t be examined too closely during the inspection. It actually used to be Prince’s house, but it was still just a crazy setup and it was just weird walking through.
What about the most opulent or over-the-top?
I've seen helicopter pads on roofs, I’ve seen shark tanks in a house. Once I saw full dinosaur skeleton in a house, like what you’d see in a museum. These are the very high-end properties, of course!
Aside from hiding away any under-bed cameras, what's the best way to sell a home quickly in any market?
Price it right. For agents you have to have client control - you have to get your clients to listen to you and to trust you, and if you price it right it, you’ll sell it. As far as physically, cleaning it up, doing touch paint, and taking care of anything that really needs remodeling. Kitchen, bathrooms, and floors, those are big ones. Improving curb appeal can also help. But really, pricing it right is the most important thing.
What's a common mistake sellers make when listing their homes?
Not following their agent’s guidance, whether it's about price, or if we suggest it needs staging or partial stagings. You can send five or ten grand on staging, and you can make 20 grand in return, and people don’t listen to that sometimes. The ones that do, they always thank us later. We actually started doing a concierge service where we will pay for it up front, because a lot of times clients think it’s too expensive or they don’t want to spend the money. But we believe in it so much we will cover it, and people are beyond happy at the end.
What are some things homeowners can do in a few days or a long weekend to make their homes more appealing to buyers?
Outside of remodeling a kitchen or a bath, I'd say declutter and paint. We just did that on my newest listing, and we had 30 showings in three days, and we got an offer on the third day. I basically made my sellers move out of their own house for a bit so we could paint, and they just had a baby so we wanted to pack away some of the stuff. We got it sold in a few days, over asking.
Any paint colors in particular?
Of course it should complement the rest of the house, but light colors like white and very light gray always work. Anything that makes it look more open, airy, and new is a good choice.
Selling Sunset season 3 premiers on Friday, August 7, 2020 on Netflix (opens in new tab).