Selling your home is stressful, but you need to get the most value you can. Luckily, there are several ways you can increase the value of your home, making it easier for potential buyers to imagine moving in. Many of the actions you can take are quick and inexpensive, giving you more time to spend on the important tasks you need to finish to move into your new home.
Step back and look at your home as though you haven’t seen it before. Try to notice little things that don’t quite fit, or places that might be damaged or broken. You want the first impression to make an impact on anyone coming to look at your home. So trim the lawn, pull out any noticeable weeds, and make sure your trees and bushes look neat. Having someone help with landscaping can significantly raise the value of your home and make a new buyer more interested. Don’t forget that the first impression needs to be a good impression.
Make sure your mailbox is in good shape and the numbers are clearly visible on it. It may even be time for a new mailbox, which probably won’t cost much and might be the first thing they notice. If you have exterior lights, make sure they all work and aren’t damaged. Finally, you may want to paint your front door, trim or shutters. Paint doesn’t cost very much but can brighten the property. Your door is so important that you may want to consider replacing it, as this is one of the features that potential owners may consider for safety and aesthetics.
It may be best to use bright paint on the outside, to catch attention and brighten the exterior. On the inside, you may want to be more strategic. Paint can make a room look cleaner and brighter, but different colors can also make it look bigger. You may want to make the ceiling dark to make it seem lower and make the room seem cozier, or paint walls different colors to make the room seem like a different shape.
Choose a style, and make sure the paint isn’t too different from room to room. A new owner probably won’t want to have to make changes right after moving in. Paint the insides of your window frames to make the windows look larger. Even good paint only costs about $30 a gallon, so you can make a big difference with a small investment.
Many people are attracted to a home because of the cabinets. Unless they are damaged or severely outdated, you probably don’t want to replace them at this point. But you can make them look better by giving them a few coats of paint. Also check out the knobs and handles. Replacing and updating the hardware in your cabinets can give them an attractive, modern look.
Most people don’t think of their electrical outlets, but they tend to look grungy over time. Replacing them is very inexpensive and removes a potential eyesore.
If the home has been well cared for, the molding may be fine. However, sometimes molding was put in poorly or has received damage through wear. It can be relatively easy and inexpensive to replace molding, and the use of different kinds of molding can give room a whole new look.
Especially if your home has the original sinks and faucets, they may be dated, stained or damaged. Replacing them is easy, and you can find many options at a home improvement store. The faucets especially may be upgraded so a potential buyer may be impressed by the style.
Vanity cabinets can change the look of the room, and you can replace the toilets in your home for modern, water-saving models.
Depending on what kind of flooring you have, make sure it is in good shape for viewing. Use a professional cleaner on carpet if necessary, and polish a wood floor.
Many people do not realize that they can paint tile. Tile is one kind of material that can look unsightly and unattractive, and cleaning it won’t always remove the stains. Painting it will improve the look of the entire room.
The last thing a house hunter wants to see in a home is the clutter from the old owner. On that note, you may want to put away personal items like photos and awards from your own family while you are trying to sell. Especially if you are showing the house while you still live in it, you may want to consider adding shelving or other organizational aids.
You need to keep your things put up so the possible new owner can imagine a whole new use of the space. If you have a basement and/or garage, you can add hooks on the walls to store tools and use ties to store bikes out of the way. You can add storage bins to shelves, and add organization helpers to your closets.
Keep your projects reasonable so you don’t spend more than you might be able to make. Once you have gone through the house and decided what you need to do, make a checklist so you can get everything done in a reasonable time.
Don’t hesitate to take advice from your realtor. He or she knows what has been selling, and what kinds of comments people make when viewing homes for sale. Ask what kinds of improvements might help you specifically. Good luck on selling your home!