Buyers as well as sellers can benefit. That’s because purchasing a home is comparatively cheap right now, thanks to still-low interest rates (they recently dipped below 4 percent for a 30-year fixed mortgage). And although home prices will continue to climb in 2015, they’re expected to do so at a slower rate than in 2014.
Your real estate professional is advising you to declutter, stage your home, plant new flowers, and make repairs and updates. You may be reluctant because of the costs, but your real estate agent is giving you sound investment advice that can actually make you more money when you sell your home.
There are 10 home improvements under $1,500 that add the most to home sellers' bottom line, as recommended by real estate professionals across the nation.
Home improvements are listed by the greatest return on investment (ROI):
Remove personal items; wash and clean all areas inside and outside of house; freshen air; remove clutter from furniture, counters and all areas of the home; organize closets; polish woodwork and mirrors, etc.
Home staging: Add fresh flowers; remove personal items; reduce clutter; rearrange furniture; hide old furniture in the storage; add new props or furniture to enhance rooms; play soft music; hang artwork on walls, and more.
Lightening and brightening: Open windows; clean windows and skylights inside and outside; replace old curtains; remove other obstacles from windows that block out light; repair lighting fixtures; make sure windows open easily, among other suggestions.
Kitchen and Bathroom: Buyers want to see that a home is clean and well-maintained, especially in the bathrooms. “Simple improvements like caulking the tub or re-grouting the tile floor will go a long way in the mind of a buyer.
Paint Interior: A fresh coat of paint is the quickest way to transform a room. But it probably doesn't make sense to have your entire house repainted prior to putting it on the market. (Sixteen percent of real estate professionals said interior painting is an important element in fostering the sale of a home.)
Enhance the Exterior: You wouldn't go to a job interview without brushing your hair and putting on a crisp, clean outfit. Nor should you try to sell your home without sprucing up its exterior. Start with basic maintenance: mowing the lawn, trimming overgrown shrubs, applying a fresh layer of mulch to garden beds.