Capitalize on the added value of your home by updating in areas that will bring the biggest bang for your buck. Some updates grant more return on investment (ROI) than others.
Interestingly, some upgrades will help push a sale forward without a large price ticket. A home that is move-in ready appeals to busy people, who do not want to spend time and money renovating the property before they occupy it.
Transform a tight, crowded space into a more uncluttered design by knocking out a non-structural wall and creating an open concept. Buyers like the idea of unrestricted space between the living area and the kitchen. A kitchen island acts as a “wall” between the spaces to help define the rooms without being closed off, and it allows the eye to sweep unrestrictedly across an expanse. (Related: Ready to Embrace the Minimalist Lifestyle?3 Things to Consider Before Throwing Away All Your Stuff)
If the master bedroom closet is small and over-crowded, and there is an adjacent bedroom, knock out the wall and expand the closet. Organize it with closet system from any of the box stores if you do not want to hire a professional. The wow factor will be worth it. If the adjacent bedroom is large enough, use only a portion, rather than the entire room, because loss of a bedroom may affect the value of the home. You can always reconfigure furniture or re-purpose the room so that it becomes flex-space. Buyers can use it as a bedroom if they choose.
Adding solar, from solar powered water heaters to solar panels on the roof, is a win-win. Not only will it save money on energy bills in the long run, but buyers who are concerned with going green will be impressed. With government programs available for roof panels, you can have them installed without any financial output. The monthly charge for the unit will begin saving on energy costs right away. When you have paid for the unit completely, sell energy back to the utility company and receive a nice monthly return.
Re-Do Your Flooring
Buyers like the look of a nice floor. Old, worn out or stained carpet is a turn off. The sleek, tidy look of wood or clean, unchipped tile will provide a fresh looking pallet on which buyers can feast their eyes. They like consistency throughout the home rather than the chopped-up feel of tile, wood and carpet that can all be seen from one location.
If you already have hardwood floors, re-condition them so that they shine. Synthetic wood flooring has become very popular, and it is much less expensive. It may be worth it to choose faux-wood over carpet, especially if it is not in the best condition. Carpet in bedrooms do not turn off buyers as much as it does in living areas, but it needs to be in good condition – clean, fresh, and stain free.
Update Your Kitchen
An outmoded kitchen is a no-no for buyers. An updated, modern kitchen is a sought-after feature in today’s market. Stainless steel appliances, flooring that melds with the open space around it, and modern countertops made of granite, quartz or marble head the list of the most important features that buyers want. Modernize cabinets with paint, or re-stain them and add new hardware. (Related: Top Features for Home Cooks to Look Out For When House Hunting)
Replacing dated faucets with more sophisticated ones will further enhance the counter space. Make it visually pleasing with a sleek look, but keep it aligned with the look of the room as a whole.
Upgrade the Outdoor Space
The ability to expand living space into the outdoors is appealing to home buyers. A patio or deck delineates an additional living space, which will give them the outside experience without a lot of upkeep. Cozy, colorful seating, shelter from the elements, a grill or fire-pit, rugs, and lots of flowers or greenery will be very alluring.
Provide a nice view from the patio or deck by trimming the shrubbery, mowing and edging the lawn, and pruning the trees to add visual interest. The more welcoming the outdoor space, the better buyers can visualize themselves enjoying it.
Make Your Bathrooms Pop
Look at the bathroom with a critical eye. Old-fashioned tubs, showers and sinks can be updated without a lot of expense. Clean, shine or re-glaze the tub and re-caulk, if needed. Repair holes or dents in walls and apply a fresh coat of paint. Add new fixtures in the tub and sink. Replace the sink, if it is small or dinged, with a more modern choice. (Related: No Time for a Home Reno? Do an “In the Meantime” Fix-Up, Stat)
If the home has only one bathroom, by all means add another one. Look around the home for extra spaces that can be converted into a bathroom. Decide whether to add a half bath, a three-quarter bath, or a full bath. The amount of space available will be the determining factor.
Whatever changes you make to improve your home will make a difference. Because every buyer is different, you can never please everyone. Stick to the areas of the home that have been shown to add more value, and do not go overboard.