Proper staging of a home can result in a quicker sale and help buyers realize the property’s amazing potential. It also happens to be how Clare Spartz goes beyond her role as a broker with @properties to do something extra for clients that they will always remember. “I am able to find the possibility of beauty,” she says. “I see past and beyond. It gives me great joy and unbridled excitement that radiates to buyers and sellers.”
Staging homes is actually how Spartz discovered her passion for real estate. She was working as a training director for a design company in Manhattan when 9/11 happened. Consequently, her job ended. At the same time, the Oak Park home she grew up in had been under contract but failed to close because the buyer lost their job. When the Realtor complained that the vacant house started to look abandoned, Spartz’s mom asked her to make it more charming.
“Oh, joy! I spent three weeks taking down old wallpaper, painting trim and staging each room so young buyers with small families could imagine themselves in the home where 11 kids were raised,” says Spartz. “It was immensely satisfying and ultimately proved successful.” A few years later, she did the same for the first fixer-upper condo she bought. Three months after completing that project, she became a licensed real estate broker, setting out to help sellers beautify their homes to get the best price in the shortest time period.
Spartz launched Clare Sells Homes in 2004 to assist first-time buyers and move-up, move-out and downsizing sellers in Chicago, Evanston, Oak Park, Western Springs and La Grange. Consistently a top producer with the Chicago Association of Realtors, she ranked among its top 3% last year and achieved a Best of Houzz ranking from the home improvement website from 2014 to 2019. “I have a hustle-plus-heart work ethic,” she says. “It’s a winning philosophy that keeps me going hard on a daily basis.”