Depending on your market place. If you are in a high value or affluent area, this a must - FILL THE GAPS. You might also condsider stainless steal with large knobs - looks great and is a high end look. If you are in an area where the buyer's aren't so concerned, you may be able to get away without having to spring for a larger stove to fill the gaps.
If you have a year or so before you sell, it would be worth your while to go and look at what your competetion is doing. You have time to work out your strategy.
Lastly, if this is somehting you think looks odd or funny, chances are you're in a market place that would also consider a gap odd or funny.
The space would obviously be best filled with a 36" range that would conform to the kitchen design. We agree that a $1400 investment is not an easy pill to swallow if you are selling the home. Our recommendation is to consider other options that may include: second hand, scratch & dent specials, discount centers, auctions, advertising your specific need and price range in the local penny saver, etc.
Under the circumstances we would draw the line at $600 regardless.........
Enjoy the challenge of the quest and saving money....and believe, you can make it happen!
The kitchen is always a point of interest for most buyer's.
I think you can skimp on items in other rooms, but kitchen's, master bedrooms, and bathrooms should really look put together.
If you're thinking of selling in that short period of time, view on-line sites that you could purchase the stove for less. With many famililies relocating, garage sales can also be a start point - we found a brand new, still wrapped, top of the line stove, for only $500.00!
Best of luck!