Easy Fixes to Help Sell Your Home Quickly
In a very competitive real estate market, it is vital that your home shows well in relation to the rest of the inventory for sale. Even if you’re not even thinking about selling your home right now, when the time comes, these low cost improvements could make a big difference. There are a variety of simple things that you can do to improve your chances of selling your home quickly and for the best possible price.
1. Update the Entryway
First impressions are always important, so you want to make sure the entry to your home shines. Right off the bat, most buyers are going to assume that if the home is not well maintained on the exterior, the interior won’t be much better.
Painting the front door, or even replacing it if it’s beyond help, can make a real difference. If you have vinyl siding and haven’t cleaned it in a while, mildew, dirt and grime may accumulate. Giving it a quick spray can surprisingly make a big difference in your home’s appearance.
2. Plant Some Color
Planting some flowers around the entryway can really make your property come alive. Choose a variety of colors that really stand out. Adding a few potted plants in a covered entry or a large enough stoop is always a nice touch, too.
3. Fix Up the Baths
Once you get the potential buyer past the front door, one of the easiest way to impress them is with an updated bathroom. While remodeling a bath is one of the most effective home improvement projects to get the best return on your investment, it may not work in your current budget. But if you have gold toilets and sinks from the 70s, or have carpeting in your bathroom, it may be time to let go and move on to something that 99% of the population likes better.
Have a gold shower too? There are low-cost alternatives to ripping the entire shower. There are specially made bath fitters that are designed to go over a shower for a quick, relatively inexpensive shower facelift. New faucets and bathroom hardware are another low-cost item that can make a difference. Silver and nickel are “in” right now, although brass is starting to become popular again. Changing towel racks, toilet paper holders and shower heads are also good ways to update at small expense.
4. Paint Those Walls
Painting is one of the cheapest, most effective improvements you can make in your home – especially if the colors aren’t neutral to begin with. I know you may love the red kitchen and purple bathroom, but most buyers appreciate a neutral palette which will allow them to add their own personal touches.
I know you think painting is cheap and that the buyer can just do it later. Although some buyers think this way, however, there are many people who don’t have the ability to envision the change. They need to see it done. Painting your home off white or in earth tones is the best way to go. Shades of grey are currently an especially popular choice for wall color. Remember: you’re selling your home to appeal to the masses.
5. Address the Flooring
Flooring is a little more expensive, but will bring a better return on your investment. In my recent experience, more and more buyers are turned off by carpeting, and gravitate towards wood, tile, and other hard surface flooring. Even if you have relatively new, modern carpet and don’t have the budget for new flooring, a good professional deep-clear can help dramatically. The same can be said for wood, tile, and even linoleum floors, too. A good scrubbing and/or refinishing can go a long way.
6. Clean Your Windows/Treatments
Cleaning your windows can really spruce up your home. A bright home always shows far better than a dark dungeon. Removing heavy drapes and curtains can help breathe new life into your home, especially if they are currently blocking your fantastic views. It’s far better to have nothing than to have a pattern that was popular 20 years ago. With that being said, if your windows are covered because they look directly into your neighbor’s bathroom, keep them covered, but consider updating those window treatments.
7. Have the Whole Home Professionally Cleaned
It should go without saying, but while we are on the subject of cleaning, have your house deep cleaned by a professional! I know it may seem expensive to hire someone to do something you probably do every week, but the $300 you spend will be worth it, trust me. It is amazing how features which seemed outdated when they were dirty can seem retro, unique, and cool when they are shiny and clean.
8. Change Old Lighting
Lighting may seem like a simple, subtle enhancement to make, but a buyer will notice if a home’s lighting is outdated. New, inexpensive lighting can be a fantastic way to utilize a new design trend that can help your home stand out among the crowd.
Even little things like upgrading to brighter bulbs can help. Dark or poorly lit rooms turn off most homebuyers. Although it’s a little more expensive to add, recessed lighting can really change the look in a room. Recessed lights work especially well in kitchens and baths.
9. Declutter Your Home
This one can really go a long way. Buyers like spacious rooms they can envision their own belongings in. Getting rid of things you don’t need or can put into storage while your home is on the market can transform the appearance of your home.
Hold a yard sale for those items that still hold value. For things you want to keep, but which will spoil how your home shows, get a POD (portable on-site storage) or consider putting your stuff in a short-term storage facility.
Remember: not every improvement has to be expensive. Sometimes, it’s the small things that make the biggest difference in a buyer’s mind.