Top Ten Ways to Increase the Value of Your Home
The best way to increase the value of your home is to invest in it. Investing your time and your money into your house yields a significant return. There are endless ways to do this, but we’ll be focusing on ten cheap and easy ways to increase the value of your home.
1. First impressions. Seeing a house for the first time is a lot like meeting a person for the first time; the first impression is the lasting impression. In order to make potential buyers look favorably at your house, you need to make a great first impression. Most of the work for this step just takes time. Mow the grass, rake the leaves, weed the garden, clean the front door and windows, clean off the roof, replace rusty or broken gutters, and touch up your mailbox. These little things all add up and can impress buyers before they even see the inside of your house! Conversely, if some of these things haven’t been done, buyers may feel like they would have to fix the place up after moving in, and that brings down the amount they’re willing to pay.
2. Lighting. Proper lighting can make a small room feel larger and more inviting. Natural light is always best, so leave blinds open and don’t block the windows. Lighting is absolutely essential, especially in the entryway. The entryway is the first-impression for the interior of your house, be sure it’s a good one!
3. Space. You want to have as much open space as possible. The more space it seems like there is, the more buyers will pay. Even if there isn’t much space, make it feel like there is. Move couches and furniture away from walkways so people have plenty of room to walk around. Anything that you can move out of the house should be moved out before people start coming to look at it.
4. Painting. The paint color of your walls should be as neutral as possible. When the walls are neutral it gives buyers the chance to project their future home into your house. You also don’t want to have any peeling or chipping paint. If any of the paint in your house could use a little touching up, do it. This investment will pay for itself many times over.
Kitchen cabinets are very important when it comes to painting. If your cabinets have stains, scratches, peeling paint, or are just starting to look a little old, put a new coat of paint on them. New-looking cabinets can make a huge difference to the impression your kitchen gives.
5. Windows. Having clean windows is essential. Clean windows make a home feel clean and allow more natural lighting to come in. Be sure that the window sills are not cracked or stained, and if they are, put a coat of paint over them. If there are blinds over the windows, keep them open and make sure they’re clean. Try to make them look as orderly as possible. People look towards the lighter areas of rooms, so everything around the windows must look tidy.
6. Organization. This goes hand-in-hand with creating space. If you weren’t able to move very much out of your house, then you need to organize it well. Dishes in the kitchen should be arranged nicely, shoes in the entryway should have a box or some other way to keep them out of sight, and closets should have items hung up neatly and not have disorganized stacks in them. Bathrooms should have folded towels and clean counter tops, and any other area of your house where things tend to collect should be organized.
Garages are usually an issue when it comes to organization. Everything you don’t need at the house should be moved out or thrown away and everything left should be neatly put away.
7. Flooring. Even if everything else is done well, an old floor can ruin the appeal of a house. Carpets should be shampooed and vacuumed and tiles should be swept and mopped. If you do not have very nice flooring, it will be well worth you money to upgrade the floor before buyers come. No matter where people go in your house, they can see the floor. Be sure they’re not looking at something regrettable.
8. Landscaping. The simplest of changes can make all the difference. A well-kept yard dramatically increases the value of a house. The first step is to just have it maintained. Having the grass mowed down, dead tree limbs trimmed, and flower beds weeded can make all the difference. You can always go the extra mile and hire a landscaping expert to really enhance your yard, but this isn’t always necessary. At the very least it must all look trimmed and maintained.
9. Maintenance. No one wants to hear that there are quirks to starting and using the systems in a house. If large systems like your heater are getting old and have their own personality then it is time to get a replacement. The same goes for any large system in your home. Buyers want the “on” switch to do its job without having to remember to do something like kicking the wall three times. Issues like this can drive buyers away from your house entirely. Most buyers aren’t looking for a fixer-upper.
10. Deep Cleaning. The least expensive and one of the most effective ways to increase value and prepare a house for buyers is to do a very thorough deep clean. Every surface from the floors to the top of the refrigerator should be cleaned off. Dusting, scrubbing, vacuuming, and mopping will all be part of this process.
Again, garages are an issue here. Clean up that old grease stain, scrub the paint drips out of the walls, sweep the saw dust out, and knock down any spider webs.
The cost of most of these improvements is very low, just a little time and a little money. But, the increased value to your home will easily run in the thousands. Show your house off with pride and earn thousands of dollars on your time investment. There is money to be made for those who are willing to go and get it.
Contact Dan Parisi California Real Estate Professional for a free consult on selling your property.