Selling a House Can Take a Little ‘Plastic Surgery’

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Realty Center

Suppose you finally came to an important decision—that this spring is going to be the right time for selling your house. If you had been biding your time, watching other area houses being listed and closed throughout the fall, you may also have been getting a head start on some major maintenance or remodeling projects that you knew would be needed once you put your own place up for sale.

You may even have cleared away some extraneous furniture or décor items that had accumulated through the years, and made sure the landscaping was in good trim. If you had done those things—de-cluttered, spruced up, cleared the decks, etc.—you would have been just about ready to contact an agent to get the show on the road…

But what if even all the prep work nonetheless left you with the feeling that the old place still wasn’t quite ready. What if something still seemed to be missing: something you couldn’t quite put your finger on, but something that you just knew was needed to pep up the showings that would soon be taking place.

Selling a house to yield its maximum value can be more art than science. One of the skills that’s quite important is being able to envision what prospective buyers see. Especially with older properties, selling a house that to you seems filled with comforting familiarity might seem worn out (or just plain used) to others. Although many prospects do prefer older neighborhoods over newer ones, most folks also have a contradictory impulse: they appreciate the allure of the new. They may hanker for the mature landscaping and established community structures of older neighborhoods, yet simultaneously would prefer a place that seems freshly renewed.

Fortunately, taking a few steps to make an older property ‘new again’ needn’t be hugely expensive:

  • Cabinets – It’s relatively easy to put a fresh face on worn cabinet doors and drawers to rejuvenate a tired-looking kitchen. You can find a wide range of reasonably priced panels that fit many cabinets. Sometimes the same effect can be achieved by re-staining—or simply changing the cabinetry hardware (go for stainless or brushed nickel to achieve the look the majority of today’s buyers prefer).
  • Appliances – Full kitchen remodels can be more expensive than is really practical, but sometimes much of the same effect can be achieved by simply replacing an old range, oven, dishwasher or refrigerator. Re-facing appliances that are perfectly serviceable (especially stainless surfaces that can’t be rescued) is another budget-wise option.
  • Tired-looking sinks and fixtures can all but ‘sink’ the prospects of selling.
  • Sometimes the addition of stylish faucets and some fresh caulking can transform a kitchen or laundry roomAs you close in on the time for selling your house, sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can help you see what still needs to be done—or, importantly, what doesn’t! It’s a very good reason to give us a call!


Comments (6)

Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Connie Inmon - sometimes we have to do some 'plastic surgery' - and I like that phrase.

It's so true - we can stage/de-clutter however, those little extras help the home to sell at highest price for sure.

Jan 06, 2016 02:13 PM
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

Never heard it put quite that way... plastic surgery! Very nice post! Keep writing! Welcome to the Rain! it is worth the time to be here!

Jan 12, 2016 04:40 PM
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty - Alexandria, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

Connie, just came over from Rebecca Gaujot's blog and wanted to say hello. Welcome to the Rain!

Jan 19, 2016 11:50 PM
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I like it, give the house a little face lift.  Welcome to AR and I hope you'll blog more.

Jan 22, 2016 11:24 AM
Anna Hatridge
R Gilliam Real Estate LLC - Farmington, MO
Missouri Realtor with R Gilliam Real Estate LLC

You are right a little work here and there will make an older home more inviting to new owners.  Good information.  

Feb 01, 2016 09:38 PM
Anna Hatridge
R Gilliam Real Estate LLC - Farmington, MO
Missouri Realtor with R Gilliam Real Estate LLC

Connie, Welcome to Active Rain!  I hope you will posting again soon.  Looking forward to seeing a post with a photo included.   I am now following you.  Have a wonderful week!

Feb 01, 2016 09:40 PM