We had the good fortune of connecting with Julie Martin-Murgatroyd and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Julie, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Prior to starting Hart and Haven, I worked in the competitive media industry for more than two-decades. In order to advance, I had to take a lot of risks along the way. Often times, this meant coming out of my comfort zone. I learned to trust my gut when it came to difficult assignments, career moves to different cities, and managing unforeseen problems when on a deadline. Looking back now, these are all skills that help me manage my business! Ultimately, having confidence and trusting your instincts is key, and that has proven to be true in my staging and design business.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Like all art forms, the home staging and design business is very subjective. Personally, I feel that every home tells a story and there is no magic formula that works in every situation. I studied fine art in college and have a minor in that field. I also became a certified home stager a couple of years ago. However, I truly believe that moving around the country so much when I worked in the media really prepared me for this path! I have lived in at least 8 homes (not including rentals) and found the interior design process with each of them to be unique. Here in Atlanta, I’ve staged everything from raw lofts with concrete walls, to traditional homes in Country Club neighborhoods. Needless to say, what works in one does not in the other. I don’t feel design should feel forced. It should feel organic to the architecture and feel of the home and neighborhood. It is not an easy process. I tend to be a bit “type a”, and I’ve had to let some of that need to be perfect go in order to deliver a project. Sometimes I have to make changes I may not necessarily like in order to please a client. It’s all part of the business. I really want the world to know that Hart and Haven is about telling and selling a home’s story. Just the best version of it.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
We moved to East Cobb a few years ago when my daughter was starting school, so I tend to do most things close to where I live. I’d take them to Canton Street in Roswell to visit the shops and eat a great meal at Little Alley Steak. My favorite restaurant nearby in East Cobb is called Seed, and they have a nice wine bar called Stem. For in-town dining, you can’t beat anything Kevin Rathbun puts his hands on. For a little culture, the High Museum and a show at The Fox. I recently discovered the rooftop at Ponce City Market and loved it! A visit to Piedmont Park and the North Georgia wineries would also make the list. Oh, and for shopping I love the Avalon, Nordstrom Perimeter, and I have a killer HomeGoods nearby.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to recognize my husband, John, first and foremost. His support and encouragement has been invaluable. He’s always there to lift me up when I doubt myself. I also really owe a shoutout to Jennifer Powers, the stager and designer I trained under for a year. She taught me so much about the business and what it takes to be successful. I also couldn’t do this without my repeat Atlanta realtor clients who trust me to take their listings to the next level!

Website: http://www.hartandhaven.com

Instagram: @hartandhaven1

Facebook: @hartandhaven

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