(Toronto) November 13, 2002 – Believing life is the adventure you make it, Debra Gould closed her marketing consulting business, sold most of her belongings and moved from Toronto to Salt Spring, BC 4 years ago. “I needed to get out of my comfort zone to give me the freedom to reinvent my life,” she said when asked why she moved to such a remote island.
So began a new way of life and a creative journey that would lead Gould to designing a line of decorative home accessories. She has been dubbed “as colour conscious as Matisse” in a magazine cover story, her work is included in the book Floorcloth Magic published in the US, and she’ll be appearing on Sue Warden’s Craftscapes, airing across Canada on HGTV, November 22.
In fact, it was her trip to Toronto in May to tape the TV show that lead to her decision to move back. By the end of August, Gould had made that dream a reality and sold her Montreal home and relocated her home and company, Six Elements Inc.
Fortunately she can really be based anywhere. With her work sold on her two web sites, her clients are located throughout Canada, the US and as far away as Australia.
In addition to colour and design, one of Gould’s other passions is real estate.
She’s bought and sold 6 homes — 3 of them in the last year alone. She has managed to earn a profit on all of these deals, by finding neglected or poorly decorated homes and fixing them up to sell. “The key,” she says, “is knowing how to transform the overall look and finer details that get results. Proper paint selections and better lighting, for example, can boost the perceived value of even a ‘starter’ home by $25,000 or more.”
Gould is now helping others benefit from her own experience by offering home staging (or house fluffing as it’s also called) and colour consulting services. From room by room makeovers to organizing a home to be seen at its best— Gould tailors her services to the client’s budget and experience. “Some clients just need a laundry list of things they can do themselves, others need a real makeover,” she says.
A house is a significant investment and we all want to maximize our return, especially these days when we need to compensate for what we’ve lost in the stock market. “Maybe it’s my MBA training,” says Gould, “but I really take a bottom line approach to decorating a home, especially if it’s with an eye to resale. My guiding principle in any house fluffing project is determining which efforts will make the most significant difference in the actual sale of the home.”
Gould’s talents provide an excellent return on investment — helping sell a home quickly and at a higher price. She can work with a client’s real estate agent or get involved even before a listing to ensure the agent sees the property in its best light. Gould offers free tips that anyone can use on their own to improve the overall look of a home, whether they are moving or not.
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