If you’re planning on selling your house soon, you don’t necessarily have to do a complete remodel in order to increase its value and make it appeal to your buyers. A few minor changes for relatively little cost can dramatically drive up the value of your home. Here are a few tips to make your house stand out and prove its worth to a potential buyer.
Spruce up the front yard.
Remember that when a potential buyer looks at your house, the front yard is the first thing they’re going to see—and you know what they say about first impressions. Make sure that there aren’t any branches, kid’s toys, or other debris cluttering up the yard. You can also do some minor landscaping to increase the aesthetic appeal of the front of your house. Try planting drought-resistant perennials; these look great and are easy to take care of, so you won’t have to worry about spending an excessive amount of time on them.
Make sure that you have a nicely manicured lawn as well. If you don’t have time to take care of the lawn yourself or feel like you wouldn’t do a good enough job, hire someone to do weekly lawn care until you sell your house.
Clean up your kitchen and appliances.
It’s essential that your kitchen looks good to your buyers—this is a central gathering place for many families, and since it’s associated with food preparation, it should look pristine. Consider replacing sink faucets and cabinet doors if they’re getting worn out. Even just adding new cabinet door handles can go a long way in making your kitchen look nicer. And, of course, if you have the money to buy new appliances, you can seriously increase your home’s value.
Another thing that buyers look for in a kitchen is plenty of counter space. Even if you don’t have all that much counter space, make sure that the counters you do have are cleared of clutter in order to maximize that space and make it look open and like there’s a good amount of room.
Light up your space.
Anyone who has ever toured a poorly lit home before knows what a huge difference good lighting makes. If you have old light fixtures, trade them out for newer ones, and make sure that all your bulbs are good—absolutely no flickering or burnt out lights! You can also purchase an elegant-looking but relatively cheap chandeliers at most major home improvement stores; this can effectively illuminate a room and also serve as a great centerpiece.
Make sure that the front of your house is well lit at night. This goes back to that idea of the first impression—buyers may drive past a property they’re interested in touring after work in the evening, so your house needs to look great both during the day and at night.
Consider glass doors.
Got a great view from your house or a beautiful backyard? You can highlight this by installing a set of glass doors. This will let more natural light into your house and also create a more dramatic look.
Convert a den into a bedroom.
Families looking to buy a house are likely looking for a place with enough bedrooms for their kids, and maybe even a guest room for visitors. If you have a den or study in your house, you can easily convert it into a bedroom. It’s likely that the only major change you’ll need to make is installing a closet, which you should be able to do for less than $1,500. Making that kind of investment may have a huge payoff, as your house becomes more valuable the more bedrooms it has.
Hire a carpet cleaner.
Carpets are notoriously difficult to clean, so it may be worth calling in a professional to make sure that your carpets are spotless. This is especially important if you have light-colored or neutral carpets which really show stains and dirt.
Put on a new coat of paint.
Here’s one more tip for improving the appearance of the outside of your house. If your paint is starting to peel or is just looking generally dingy, put on a fresh coat of paint to give your house a new, lively look. This is a relatively inexpensive and simple job that can really boost the immediate appeal of your home.
When you’re selling your house, it’s important to put your best foot forward. Spending some money on minor repairs and renovations will more than pay off in the long run, so start brainstorming about ways that you can successfully market your house to your potential buyers.
Author Bio: Juliana Weiss-Roessler runs Weiss-Roessler Writing with her husband Josh. Her writing has been featured on high-traffic websites, such as Yahoo.com, and in major publications, such as PARADE and People. Follow her on Twitter, Google+, and Facebook.