How Much Should You Spend
How Much Should You Spend
In preparing your home for the market, spend as little
money as possible. Buyers will be impressed by a brand new roof, but
they aren't likely to give you enough extra money to pay for it. There
is a big difference between making minor and inexpensive "polishes"
and "touch-ups" to your house, such as putting new knobs
on cabinets and a fresh coat of neutral paint in the living room,
and doing extensive and costly renovations, like installing a new
Your REALTORŪ, who is familiar with buyers' expectations
in your neighborhood, can advise you specifically on what improvements
need to be made. Don't hesitate to ask for advice.
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Before putting your house on the market, take as much
time as necessary (and as little money as possible) to maximize its
exterior and interior appeal.
Enhance your homes exterior and curb appeal by:
- Keeping the lawn edged, cut and watered regularly;
- Trimming hedges, weeding lawns and flowerbeds, and pruning trees
- Checking the foundation, steps, walkways, walls and patios for cracks
- Inspecting doors and windows for peeling paint;
- Cleaning and aligning gutters;
- Inspecting and cleaning the chimney;
- Repairing and replacing loose or damaged roof shingles;
- Repairing and repainting loose siding and caulking;
- In Northern winters (for our Northern clients), keeping walks neatly
cleared of snow and ice;
- During spring and summer months considering adding a few showy
annuals, perhaps in pots, near your front entrance;
- Re-sealing an asphalt driveway;
- Keeping your garage door closed;
- Storing RVs or old and beaten up teens' jalopies elsewhere while
the house is on the market; and
- Applying a fresh coat of paint to the front door.
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Enhance your homes interior by:
- Giving every room in the house a thorough cleaning, as well as removing
all clutter. This alone will make your house appear bigger and brighter.
Some homeowners with crowded rooms have actually rented storage garages
and moved half their furniture out, creating a sleeker, more spacious
- Hiring a professional cleaning service, once every few weeks while
the house is on the market. This may be a good investment for owners
who are busy elsewhere.
- Removing the less frequently used, even daily used items from kitchen
counters, closets, and attics, making these areas much more inviting.
Since you're anticipating a move anyhow, holding a garage sale at
this point is a great idea.
- If necessary, repainting dingy, soiled or strongly colored walls
with a neutral shade of paint, such as off-white or beige. The same
neutral scheme can be applied to carpets and linoleum.
- Checking for cracks, leaks and signs of dampness in the attic and
- Repairing cracks, holes or damage to plaster, wallboard, wallpaper,
paint, and tiles.
- Replacing broken or cracked windowpanes, moldings, and other woodwork.
- Inspecting and repairing the plumbing, heating , cooling, and alarm
- Repairing dripping faucets and showerheads.
- Buying showy new towels for the bathroom, to be brought out only
when prospective buyers are on the way.
- Sprucing up a kitchen in need of more major remodeling by investing
in new cabinet knobs, new curtains, or a coat of neutral paint.