1. Lighting updates - High impact and generally something that you can do yourself, and can do so on a budget.
2. Kitchen cabinet hardware - High impact and a great way to spruce up a kitchen on a budget. By replacing your old cabinet hardware (assuming the cabinets are otherwise in good condition) with new updated hardware, you can extend the life of older cabinets.
3. Paint & Carpet - High impact, and it appeals to Buyers visually and psychologically. The smell of new paint and carpet, coupled with simple updates like the ones in 1 and 2 above, give Buyers the impression there is a sense of 'newness' to the home.
4. If it's in the budget, granite (or other solid surface) counters in the kitchen. You will not get your money out of it on a dollar for dollar basis, but it will go a long way towards making your home more desirable to a broader range of Buyers, while also helping to get top dollar for your home.
5. Landscaping - Even if limited to the front yard entrance area. This is something you can do yourself, and helps a lot with curb appeal and first impressions.
Other things to consider: Get rid of any fluorescent tube lighting, in particular if it is in the kitchen. Replace them with can lights. Get rid of any 'make-up light bars' in the bathrooms. There are plenty of affordable alternatives that don't look like clown make-up lights. Get rid of the faux brass plumbing fixtures. Nothing screams 'the 80s' like faux brass. And if you do nothing else, replace old or cracked caulking and/or tile grout around plumbing fixtures and counter tops.
Hope that helps!
There are two things that I think need addressing from the previous answers; if you can add a bathroom to any one bathroom home, you are likely to get a huge return on your investment, and if you can add square footage to your house, it will generally create a "value buffer" for you. For example, if you add 200sf to your home, you should get a little less than whatever the going rate for 200sf in your area is...unless you are taking away from some other important item, adding square footage will almost always increase your value.
Please feel free to call me at 303-829-0814 if you would like to discuss your specific situation.
I just noticed that Remodeling Magazine has published the latest cost to value numbers for home improvement projects. The link below takes you to the Metro Denver page. You will see that it is a rare project that pays for itself, but this does not mean that an owner who has a good eye and understands how to use tools properly cannot squeeze some profits out of a project. The main thing for handy homeowners is to pay extremely close attention to safety issues. I would also caution homeowners to only start projects they know they can complete properly. Badly done projects hurt more than they help.
Berkshire Hathaway Home Services,
Real Estate of the Rockies
Your link was truncated. Thanks for finding it, though.
-Also, if you are selling a home, staging the home can yield great results. The cost of staging can be in the $1,000 range for a vacant home, but it can really make your home a lot more livable and inviting to a potential buyer.
-If your home is occupied and you are trying to sell it, it's always good to remove as much clutter as possible, and try to make the home inviting to your buyers
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You generally get a better return on remodeling kitchens and baths. But, I wouldn't remodel just to sell a house. That's crazy, especially in this market where people look past things like out-dated kitchens and baths.
Today's buyer wants a clean house that doesn't have a lot of fixes. (My, how a few years can make a difference.)
A more relevant question in this market might be: How realistic do sellers have to be?
There is an inventory shortage. We know this. However (dramatic pause), I recommend sellers price realistically - especially because sales of higher priced homes are not flying out of the MLS (at least for the moment). For homes $200,000 and below, Realtors don't even have time to get a sign in the yard. The million and above are doing well. In between? Not as sweet as those sweet spots.
If you want to sell a home at $300,000, adding to the price (by including granite counters and painted cabinets) might be precisely the wrong strategy. In fact, pricing closer to $250,000 is a good strategy. With so many agents and buyers out there looking, what happens? Maybe a feeding frenzy (which is a good thing for the seller)?
I've worked the sellers who were just so determined to get "their price." We price what they hope to get. Then the house sits ... and sits. If everyone in the neighborhood has nice floors, updated kitchens and nice paint, you should be asking why is someone going to pay more to the one person who is out of step? If the price is too high, the traffic thins out. Then nothing happens until ...
Invite your Realtor to tour your home. Have the Realtor do a market analysis. A good Realtor will show you what is realistic and has the time to discuss marketing strategy.
Yes, I said it!
Look. You've got a 2004 car, you don't put a 2013 door on it. Unless you're going to remodel the entire home, just clean it, paint it, fix anything that's broken, and call it good.
But all actually really depends on the property itself, its size, price range and the surrounding homes on the market or on sale.....
A good local experienced Realtor will be of great help...
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago and Northern Illinois Expert
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Covering for @Properties the city of Chicago, all N and NW suburbs, the fine homes on the
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