Now is the time for home owners contemplating a spring sale to spruce up their properties in anticipation of what Mike Larson of Weiss Research calls a potentially vibrant home-selling season. "If you have been beating your head against a wall, this is going to feel a lot better,” he jokes.
Here are 10 cheap ways to make a property more attractive to shoppers.
- Improve first impressions. Touch up the paint on the front door and other areas that buyers see first.
- Clean up the landscaping. Trim the hedges and trees and plant some annuals in the flowerbeds.
- Paint the interior. A coat of light yellow or cream with contrasting white woodwork looks fresh and clean.
- Refurbish the floors. Buff the hardwoods. Install new carpets – or at least get them professionally cleaned.
- Take care of the big problems. If the house needs a roof or the front stoop is crumbling, get them fixed.
- Buy warranties. Putting appliances under warranty gives homebuyers a secure feeling.
- Improve energy efficiency. New windows or improved insulation tell a potential buyer the seller is on top of things plus they come with tax benefits.
- Replace light fixtures. Updated fixtures, especially at the entrance way and in the foyer, create a good first impression.
- Buy a stove. Home owners whose kitchen isn’t top of the line can jazz it up for a few hundred dollars by buying a new stove, which gives the room a fresh feel.
- Tidy up the bathrooms. Get rid of mildew, replace caulking and replace stained sinks.
Source: U.S. News & World Report, Luke Mullins (01/21/2010)