Should you spend money to make money when selling a home?

Real Estate Agent with Diamond Partners Inc 00244377

I am often asked for recommendations on how homeowners should spend their money on home improvements before they list their home for sale.

"Do I repaint the house?"

"Should I replace the carpet or refinish the floors?"


It's my personal opinion that if you are planning on selling a house in the near future, you should only focus on the best return on investment and low cost quality improvements that will have the biggest impact on overall appeal. I'm not all about cutting corners, but paint is cheap, and a small purchase like that goes a long way, especially if it's a DIY project. If you tackle this type of project yourself, be sure to take your time and do a good job. Trimming your trees and bushes will improve the appearance of your home, which is the first impression. Imagine as best as you can how your home will look in marketing photos. You will want to do everything on a budget to ensure that it's inviting. Declutter and minimalist your furnishings. Purge or rent a storage unit. Clutter is distracting and it makes a home look small, even the storage areas of the home which are considered selling features. Simple maintainance like caulking and regrouting can also freshen up a bathroom. 

When it comes to the big ticket items and deferred maintanance of the major components of a home (roof, furnace, etc.), the cost could outweigh the return, so it's my opinion that these needed repairs and improvements should just be factored into the asking price. 


Selling a home is not as much about the price as it is the seller's bottom line. When the time to sell is quickly approaching, invest wisely before preparing to put your house on the market. 

Posted by



Carol Culkin - Licensed Real Estate Salesperson for ReeceNichols Real Estate, is your source for real estate in Overland Park and the bordering cities of Leawood, Olathe, Mission, Miriam, Lenexa and Shawnee, Stillwell and Spring Hill. Carol has been ranked as an award winning agent and offers her clients over 10 years of real estate experience.


Member of National Associations of Realtors®, Member of Kansas Associations of Realtors®, Member of Kansas City Regional Associations of Realtors®, Member of Heartland Multiple Listing Services, Accredited Buyer's Representative (ABR), Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES), Red Cross Volunteer - Greater Kansas City Chapter, Supportor of Cross-Lines Community Outreach.


ReeceNichols Real Estate

8001 College Blvd Suiite 100

Overland Park, KS 66210

Office: (913) 451-4415
Cell: (913) 333-8310  



Comments (6)

Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

If you're going to do that, it has to be immaculate in order for it to make sense, in my opinion

Jun 09, 2021 10:41 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello Carol - real estate decisions and questions, like so many things in life, include an "it depends" clause when answering.  It's not a "one size fits all" solution.  Careful listening and discussion of the benefits as well as possible disadvantages will help solve many issues.  

Jun 10, 2021 04:32 AM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

A seller should make minimum allowances for cosmetic changes unless they are going to put in wood flooring.  One needs to spend a dollar to make a few extra just spend the right dollars.

Jun 10, 2021 05:12 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

It is always a good idea to spend some money to get a home in tip-top shape before listing.  I always implore my sellers to allow me to visit the home before they spend any money though, so I can make sure that they are spending it in the right places that will allow it to sell for top dollar!

Jun 10, 2021 06:59 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


I think that Michael Jacobs summed it up well.  On another note, agents should continue marketing themselves whether inventory is high, low, or non existent.  Otherwise, they become non-existent. A

Jun 10, 2021 07:23 AM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

I agree - spend money wisely to get return on your investment. Paint, soap and water go a long way.

Jun 10, 2021 09:38 AM