I will never forget the time I went to an open house in Dracut, Massachusetts where the interior of the home looked like a postcard from the 1960’s. Sadly, the condition of the home wasn’t really the problem. The really bad news for the homeowner was that he had just spent $60,000 landscaping his lawn to put the home on the market. There was no budget left for interior upgrades and the agent and the homeowner were stumped as to why the home wasn’t moving. I wish this was the only time I had seen a situation like this but it happens more often that you would think. If you are selling your home, and you want to invest in making some changes, they should be upgrades that will result in more dollars at selling time. So what might those big return upgrades be?
If you have the means to do it, start with the kitchen. Do your research and get cabinets that look great but do not break your budget. If new cabinets are not in your budget, consider painting your existing ones for an updated look or replacing the hardware. Don’t underestimate the effect of brand new hardware. New, stainless steel appliances and updated countertops are also changes that will result in a lot more money when you sell the house. Countertops do not need to be granite. Formica now has options that look like granite and are incredibly appealing.
If you do not have the money to invest in a new kitchen or you just don’t feel like taking on a project of this size, consider updating your bathrooms. Upgrading your bathroom can be as simple as replacing the vanity and light fixtures and putting on a fresh coat of paint. Reglazing that avocado colored tile can also make a world of difference.
Upgrading linoleum to tile is another great way to make your home look newer. Tiles don’t have to cost you a fortune and if you choose the right ones they can actually make your rooms appear larger.
Painting neutral colors throughout. Paint has to be, by far, the one thing homeowners can do for short money and a huge ROI. Not only does paint make a house look cleaner it appears to be more well-maintained than a home with dinged or dirty walls. Additionally, absolutely nothing changes the look and feel of a room faster than a new paint color. Certainly paint requires a time commitment and a little bit of hard work but nothing else compares to the end results.
White trim is another big seller. White trim really gives rooms a bright, fresh look. Updating all of your trim is not an expensive undertaking. It is time consuming but really worth it. Sherwin Williams makes a super high-gloss trim that is actually acrylic so it does not smell badly. It covers wonderfully and looks amazing when dry. If you are going to paint your trim I highly recommend this product.
Regardless, of what project you opt for to improve the look of your home before listing, do your research. Make sure the changes you are making are desirable in your area. Renovations are time consuming, often costly, and usually inconvenient. If your goal is a return on your investment then a little research will go a long way.