Build Equity Before you Sell
If you’re planning to sell your home, you may not be looking at getting involved with too many projects. You will be out soon, so why put in the time and money to make it a nicer living space?
The answer is that by putting some time and money into the home, you can sell it faster, appeal to more buyers (potentially start a bidding war), and command a larger premium. People want to move into a home that they know won’t have any issues for quite a while.
As a Realtor in Billings, I want to make sure that you know of 9 ways that you can raise the value of your home, and sell it faster when you do put it on the market.
Replace the Windows
Depending on how old your house is, your windows may not be doing their job properly. Sure they’re letting in light and allowing you to see outside, but are they keeping the cold air out in the winter? As much as 35% of your home’s heat could be seeping out through inferior windows!
Replacing windows is one of the quickest ways you can appeal to a new buyer. Even if you can’t afford to swap all of the windows in the home, try replacing just the main floor so that the future owner can expect a comfortable living quarters.
Put On a New Roof
Having to put on a new roof can be a big endeavor. The final cost depends on how big your house is, how many peaks and valleys, and a variety of other factors. You can get a rough estimate (and basic understanding of roofing) by checking out the RoofingCalc cost guide here.
An asphalt roof is the cheapest, but it’s not the only option. Depending on your budget, you may benefit from upgrading to a metal roof; one that will be a more permanent solution for those who are looking to purchase your home.
Paint the Drab Walls
Believe it or not, paint wears out. It gets scuffed, chipped, dinged, and otherwise damaged. It also fades over time. Fortunately, it’s really easy to update the paint in your home. And it’s incredibly affordable! For $50 you can repaint a room or two and make them “pop” for prospective buyers.
When you’re planning to paint, don’t go too crazy with the colors. Your style is going to be very different from those looking at purchasing your house. While a bright red kitchen might be your choice, a more neutral color will appeal to a wider customer base.
Plant Flowers and Landscape
If you’re going to be selling in the spring or the summer, put some sweat equity into your landscaping. Most projects are cheap for the materials, but the labor is what drives up the price. $200 on flowers can transform any yard from plain into a vibrant space alive with color.
Make a plan for the flowers so that it doesn’t look thrown together. Check out which flowers will attract hummingbirds and butterflies and create a garden just for them. Have fun with the landscaping, but don’t go crazy with permanent features (like fences, ponds, and sculptures) that might turn off buyers.
Swap Light Fixtures
How old are the light fixtures in your home? If you’ve been there for quite a while, there’s a chance that they’re outdated. Even for those that are just a little handy, swapping light fixtures isn’t actually that hard to do (unless you’re getting into three-way switches or some other crazy electrical issues, in which case an electrician is in order).
Visit a local lighting store (one that specializes in lighting will provide better information and service), and choose some modern fixtures. Spend an afternoon replacing the bedroom and living room lights, and your buyers will thank you.
Swap Power Outlets
As long as we are swapping out electrical components, take a good look at the outlets in your home. Are they drab? Do they have paint splatters on them? Do they look like they’re from a few decades ago? A buyer may not notice the new ones, but they will definitely notice if they’re old.
While you’re replacing them, consider putting some outlets that have built in USB chargers in bedrooms and offices. Making life easier for the potential buyer is a sure way to win them over.
Update the Kitchen
A full kitchen remodel sure would be nice! But spending $30,000 (and recouping $20,000 when you sell) doesn’t make a whole lot of financial sense. Fortunately, you don’t have to remodel the entire room to update it. You can start with buying matching appliances, swapping cabinet hardware, and potentially re-facing those cabinets.
If you’ve upgraded one appliance, but not the others, they may no longer match. A few hundred dollars to make the kitchen have a nice uniform look will keep buyers from being turned off. Updating the hardware on the cabinets is even cheaper, and it’s actually not that hard to re-face your own cabinets.
Improve Storage Space
Older homes have terrible storage space. Maybe people just didn’t have as many clothes back in the 40’s? If you are going to be selling your classic home, you want to make sure that the buyer has ample space to store their stuff. And that’s as easy as putting in some shelves and hangers in the closets.
Any home improvement store will carry some wire or laminated shelving. The project will take a couple of hours to hang it and make sure it’s all level. Then, when your agent in Billings shows the home they can show off how the storage space is more than adequate.
Throw in a Throw Rug
If you have bare hardwood floors, buyers might not be able to envision their beauty when the room is fully furnished. They may even be tempted to carpet over the tops of them. Don’t let the natural beauty be spoiled with carpeting!
Pick out an area rug that fits the room, and include it in the sale. It may cost a few hundred dollars (for a high quality one), but the worst that will happen is that the new owner will give it away (or sell it) because they want one with a different pattern. You might even consider leaving a receipt so they can swap it with a different style that they like more. You can shop local, or you can find a bigger selection of home decor online.
Selling Your Home in Billings
Selling your home shouldn’t be hard. But sometimes you have to do a little work now to encourage buyers to pay what you believe the home is worth. These are 9 ways you can improve the value of your home before you sell, but there are many others (and a lot that just require time, like cleaning thoroughly), for a few more tips, check out Gaby Creates’ blog.
When you’re ready to put your home on the market, get in touch with Western Skies Real Estate, the number one boutique real estate company in Billings!