As most things seem to be, buying a vacation home is more challenging than ever. The current competitive seller’s market has forced buyers to be more flexible with the properties they consider purchasing and more time-sensitive with their decisions. Interior design, and the ability to transform an available property into a dream home, have become an integral part of the home-buying process. With over 20 years of hands-on experience, Anne Santulli has successfully navigated the process and delivered custom, luxury designs from Palm Beach to the Hamptons.
By choosing a local designer, the design process can begin before the purchase, and often does. “Buyers don’t have to rely on photos that don’t tell the whole story, or worry about incomplete or inaccurate measurements,” Santulli explains. The interior designer can personally evaluate, oversee, and adjust, as needed – every step of the way. That role starts as soon as the real estate broker’s job ends – and in this market, they regularly work together.
Because of the currently limited housing buying a vacation home supply, prospective buyers often need is more challenging expert help to envision the full potential than ever. That’s where the communication and creativity of a local interior designer can be immensely helpful to both buyers and their realtors. “The realtors I work with know they can call me for an initial design consult,” Santulli says, “regardless of whether or not I receive a contract from the homeowners.” One of her clients explains, “Her meticulous overview of every detail and her ability to always be fully engaged turned this ‘worn’ house into a brand new home.”
Other important factors to consider and proactively plan for, this year, are the current shortage of qualified contractors and the ongoing global supply chain crisis. “I have a network of loyal, reliable contractors,” Santulli informs clients, “and you have to coordinate installations based on the delivery of products and materials. But these days those timelines can change multiple times, without warning.”
Santulli has a vivacious personality and a profound passion for her craft. Her reputation as the go-to designer for luxury design in Southeast Florida and the Hamptons keeps growing as she provides the personal service and 24/7 work ethic her clients deserve. She explains, “In this business, you need to not only be a creative designer but a capable project manager as well. I align myself with the best resources; space planners, contractors, furniture makers, etc.”
Only a local designer can offer the schedule flexibility necessary to be there as soon as a crucial delivery arrives. “Sometimes I have less than 24 hours’ notice,” reports Santulli, “and have to scramble to get to the job site so we don’t experience further delays.” A client of hers was impressed to see that she “has an army of tradespeople,” and another confirms, “The subcontractors Annie uses are all excellent, they all love and admire her and with her coordination of the job, everything is done on time and to perfection.”
Working with Santulli is a wise investment for those who take pride in their luxury homes or yachts. “My clients have high expectations, and they should. They hire me because they trust my opinion, integrity, and high standards. This process is invasive. My clients are comforted knowing it will be a beautiful experience every step of the way.” Her clients have boasted, “We worked with her from 1200 miles away and Annie took care of everything, making our place ready for our arrival.” And, “Annie oversaw the renovation of our golf club home while we were at home in the Northeast. Things couldn’t have gone more smoothly and everything was on time and perfectly executed.”
Having trust that a local team is there to handle everything is the key. “When you live in another part of the country your designer becomes your on-scene advocate,” Santulli emphasizes. “I am inspired by my client’s individuality.”
Look at her portfolio to be mesmerized by her unique sense of style; not a signature look, rather a harmony of many. “It’s not about my style, it’s about their dreams.” Her clients concur, one saying “Annie actually listened to us. She really took the time to learn about our lifestyle and what we liked and disliked,” and another agreeing, “She understood exactly what we were trying to achieve and gave us that and more.”
Insight, flexibility, and local connections provide realtors and their buyers with greater confidence and reassurance that everything will go smoothly − which makes a local interior designer an invaluable asset, especially now.
Annie Santulli is an entrepreneur and Palm Beach interior designer.