Selling a Home – The Ultimate Cheat Sheet
According to National Association of Realtor’s Report for 2013, home sales have declined by 4.3%, however, the prices of housing has gone up by 9.4%. This means if you are going to brave the storms and attempt to sell a home, you have to be proactive. Today’s home buyers can afford to be particular and are unlikely to settle on anything less than what they have in mind as their ideal new home. Potential home buyers are looking for a home that they do not have to do any type of major remodeling, repairs or maintenance. This means it is up to you, as the seller, to make these essential alterations in order to get the maximum price for your home.
Exterior Issues to Address When Selling a Home:
Proper maintenance and yearly up-keep are the most important overall home improvement that you can do, to insure an attractive exterior. Make sure that the gutters are flushed and cleaned routinely to protect the exterior of your home, keep your shrubs pruned and away from the home to allow for adequate breathing room. Ensure that fresh paint has been applied to the exterior of the home. If necessary, repair any cement cracks in the sidewalks, seal the windows and doors with caulk, mend or repaint fences, and reapply stain to any decks. Also, when selling a home, you might consider replacing or at least re-painting the front door of the home and placing a few pots of flowers at the door for visual appeal. If your roof is in need of repair, you should re-roof it. Even though this is a job that usually will only take a couple of days to do, buyers are resistant to purchasing a home if the roof needs replaced.
Interior Issues to Address When Selling a Home:
Addressing the interior of the home can make considerable visual changes without spending a large chunk of money. You can, in all likelihood, complete the majority of these projects without having to hire a professional. However, if you are skeptic of your know-how, you should consult with a professional. A handyman is able to complete all of these projects for you and most likely you will save money, not to mention time, by doing so.
Flooring – If you have carpeting and it is not brand new, change it out! If you are replacing it, go choose a neutral color. Darker colors in a large room is overpowering. Carpet is expensive, so if you really want the bright, bold colors, re-paint your walls, use pillows on your couch, lamps, and other types of accents. In rooms that have tile, remove and replace any chipped or damaged tiles, then clean or replace the grout.
Kitchen – Resurface the kitchen cabinets and replace doors and hardware. If the cabinets have been previously painted at one time, then re-paint them with a new coat of neutral color paint. You may love the color burgundy, but that doesn’t mean that potential buyers will as well. Install a new laminate counter top or consider granite counter tops. Resurfacing the counters will change the look entirely, but be sure to hire a professional for this. Replace faucets with new up-to-date single lever one and replace the current sink, if needed, with an ultramodern, double stainless steel sink. If you currently have laminate flooring, consider investing in tile, although newer laminate flooring can work well too.
Bathrooms – If you have tile floors, re-grout them. Clean the caulking around the bathtub and the toilet, re-caulk if needed. You should replace the current fixtures, unless they are already fashionable, bring the lighting up-to-date, possibly repaint or replace the vanity and install new flooring.
Walls – If there is any wallpaper on the walls, do away with it and apply a couple coats of neutral paint in lieu of. Make sure that any ceiling stains are fixed and bleached/repainted over. You need to paint the interior walls, again with neutral color. Give your trim a face-lift by quickly by touching up any chips and repair any holes it may have, by patching.
In previous years, when selling a home, you would have recouped more of your cost by remodeling your kitchen and bathrooms; however, according to the 2012-2013 Cost Vs Value Report, curb appeal has the highest cost-value ratio. Replacing your garage door, replacing or repainting your siding and updating your windows will give you the most value when reselling.
Kitchen remodeling will give you another high cost-value ratio when selling a home. By simply replacing appliances, resurfacing or painting your counter tops and cabinet doors, you will add a cost-ratio of 75.4%.
Considering adding on to your home with a new addition? Basement remodeling and attic bedrooms rank very high on this list as well. By remodeling these existing spaces that you already have, you are instantly able to add more livable space to your home. Consider remodeling the basement to include a wet bar area with a stainless steel sink and under-counter refrigerator, laminate flooring, and a full-bathroom to get the most bang for your buck.
Finally, before you officially place your home on the market, remove unnecessary possessions from the home and either place them in the attic or rent a storage unit and place them there. Make certain that you have nothing left out but the essentials on your kitchen and bathroom counters. This way they will look more spacious. Your home must appear and make the impression that it is large and uncluttered.
Additionally, make sure that you declare all the improvements, repairs and remodeling that you have now done, on your taxes. Make sure that you have saved all of the receipts and paid invoices.
Johnson City Handyman has provided a detailed list of items to be addressed when considering selling a home. Please feel free to download and print this out as a thorough checklist to help you along the way.
Who knows, after doing all of the above, you may just change your mind and decide to stay in your “new” home after all!