These days, if you are planning to sell your house then you probably are not making a lot of improvements. After all, it’s going to be a struggle just to get out of the property what you put in originally in most markets, so you’re probably doing some very basic repairs and cleanup and trying not to spend too much money. However, even in today’s tough market there are some basic improvements that you can make that will raise the value of your home, decrease its time on the market and actually increase the amount you ultimately get paid.
Because the market out there right now is weighted in such favor of the buyer, most buyers do not want fixer-uppers at this time. Why would they when move-in ready houses are so cheap? Here are a few things that you can do that show clear return-on-investment in many home sale cases:
- Expand the living space
Whether you finish part of the attic to increase the number of bedrooms or build a deck to expand the area of the home, more buyers are looking for more bedrooms and social areas because more families are living “multi-generationally,” meaning that kids and parents are moving in together to combine incomes and save money. Increasing your square footage is a great way to attract these buyers. You may also wish to finish the basement so that it can be used as an additional bedroom or game room.
- Work on curb appeal
You’ve heard for years that the key to selling a house is the front door. Well, replacing that front door could dramatically increase the attractiveness of your property fast. Also replace any rotted siding and consider a paint job or installing decorative trim to sharpen the look of the home.
- Update amenities
Bathroom fixtures and kitchens tend to become dated quickly. Putting in new countertops, opting to leave stylish appliances or replacing older energy-inefficient fixtures with new efficient ones makes your house more appealing to the eye and the budget. The same goes for windows; if your property has old windows, installing new, energy-efficient models will net you tax credits and save buyers big money that they are often willing to pay you instead!
Will making these changes guarantee a fast home sale at list price every time? Not in this market. However, research does indicate that these types of repairs and improvements tend to pay off for homeowners if and when they sell.
What types of repairs are you making – and opting not to make – in your investment properties and in your own home?
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