10 Quick and Easy Upgrades for Before You List

Keep your buyer’s to-do list short so you can keep your purchase price higher! Here are 10 quick and easy upgrades I always suggest to my clients before listing their home.

1. Staging – If you are going to continue living in the home while it is on the market “staging” the home is a MUST! That doesn’t always mean renting furniture. The goal is for potential buyers to come in and imagine themselves in your space. Start with decluttering. So get a head start on packing those knick-knacks and family photos away. Neatly organize what absolutely must stay. Make sure walkways are clear of too much furniture. And clean, clean, CLEAN! The goal is to make the house and its potential the center of attention.

2. Paint – Keep it simple. You don’t need a different color in each room. You don’t need to pick Pantone’s color of the year. Think simple and neutral. Take cues from the architectural features of the home. Is there a show stopping stone fireplace? Maybe original woodwork? Or a beautiful tile backsplash? Carrying one cohesive look throughout the entire home will help the home feel larger and more inviting. We’re always happy to do a color consultation!

3. Update the hardware – Small details tend to add up in a buyer’s mind to a bigger price tag after the fact. Stop that from happening by replacing old beige switch plates and outlet covers with crisp white. Make sure the cabinet pulls work with the style of kitchen. Faucets, towel rods, and showerheads should all match in the bathroom. Are the same knobs on every door? What about the hinges? Do they all work properly? Proper finishes shout “move in ready” to a buyer.

4. Update the lighting – Similar to finishes, when buyers see outdated, broken, or mismatched light fixtures, they just see more dollar signs. Lighting should be effective and complimentary to the homes style. Depending on how many fixtures are needed, this can end up being a more expensive update. But it will more than pay off in the long run. And please make sure all the bulbs match. We recommend energy saving LED bulbs.

5. Remove unattractive window treatments – They hold dust, smells, and usually aren’t adding any style points to the home. Unless the treatments are needed for privacy, temperature control, or protection of furniture or floors, remove those old drapes, valences, and shades.

6. Mirrors are magic – They truly are. They instantly make a room feel bigger and brighter. It’s easy to find simple, inexpensive ones to add to a dark hallway or in small foyer. Don’t forget about the bathrooms. Replace that dated medicine cabinet with a nicely framed mirror. Give them a good cleaning before any showings to make sure they really shine.

7. Make a good first impression – Don’t forget about curb appeal! A lot of buyers can’t look past their first impression of the home, so make it a good one. A nicely painted front door, clean trim, tidy landscaping, a welcome mat, and especially easily readable coordinating house numbers. Last thing you want is for an eager buyer to come see your home and not be able to find it!

8. Matching appliances – If your refrigerator is white, the range is stainless steel, and the dishwasher is black, your kitchen would benefit from an investment in matching appliances. Don’t worry about brand. Focus on finish and style. If you have a very modern refrigerator, you’re going to want the other appliances to coordinate well with it. This is another more expensive task, but you know what they say: “kitchens and baths sell homes.” The thought of purchasing and installing new appliances and removing the old is enough to send any buyer running.

For the experienced DIY-er, try these more advanced updates!

9. Update the kitchen backsplash – Trends in tile are changing constantly. Something you had installed only a few years ago could be seriously dating your kitchen now. More elaborate patterns and colors can easily dissuade buyers because they see a backsplash as a job that needs to be contracted out. If you’re up for the task, like with most things, the best bet is to pick something simple and neutral.

10. Paint the tub – sometimes a full bathroom reno is warranted. But wherever that can be avoided, we try to find ways around spending big bucks on big projects. Redoing a shower can seem like a scary undertaking. But did you know that you can paint your bathtub? Sometimes when elbow grease isn’t enough to make it look brand new, a coat of the proper paint can make it look brand new without the high price tag. Make sure to find the right product for your type of tub and follow all instructions diligently.

When listing your home, its always important to take the time getting things right the first time. Put in the effort early to see the biggest returns back in your pocket! We’re here to help you assess what changes will be the most valuable to you. Interested in seeing what your home could bring in? Reach out today!

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