Back to articles

Tactical Home Improvements That Buyers LOVE

Buying & Selling
Buying & Selling
Tactical Home Improvements That Buyers LOVE

You are trying to sell your house, and you really want to make it stand out among the sea of listed properties in your area. But what will give you the most bang for your buck and maximize your home’s value? You are in luck! Here are six upgrades worth every penny and guaranteed to make buyers fall in love. 

Kitchen Updates

 The kitchen is the heart of a house, where people gather to share a meal and share their day. Everyone in the house touches the kitchen, and therefore, it should reflect this importance by being the most updated room in the house. Whether it is smaller, minor updates or a full remodel, a seller can expect over a 90% return on their investment with their improvements. Here are some things you can do:

  • Replace old appliances for new, matching appliances
  • Refinishing or replacing cabinets
  • Updating light fixtures
  • Replace cabinet and drawer pulls for simple modern ones
  • Switch out old flooring for new flooring
  • Add an island
  • Put in new countertops
  • Replace old faucets for new, modern ones
  • Update with a modern, neutral paint job

Remember to keep things clean, neutral and modern. If interior design is not your forte, pick up a few idea books at the bookstore or some of the free pamphlets from the paint shop and mimic a look you like. Decorating with new hand towels, throw rugs, curtains or kitchen mats can also help modernize your kitchen.

Landscaping

Curb appeal drives traffic to your home for viewings and establishes a great first impression. Because of this, landscaping is one of the best things you can do to update your house and maximize it’s value with a 100% return on your investment. The key is to keep it simple, clean and low maintenance. Here are some ideas to try:

  • Pull out all dead, sick or unsightly plants or trees and remove all stumps
  • Spend time fertilizing, seeding and procuring a nice lawn
  • Extend the yard by clearing unnecessary wooded or overgrown areas and replacing with lawn or a planting bed
  • Mulch all planting beds
  • Remove all plants or trees that hide the house, and remove any climbing vines or growth on the house
  • Clearly define planting beds with granite pavers, bricks or stones
  • Replace or remove old walkways or patios
  • Add lighting to highlight trees, walkways and driveways
  • Plant new shrubs, flowers, or decorative trees
  • Remove or replace old storage sheds, playgrounds, barbecue sets
  • Purchase brand new lawn furniture

Although you may like to have decorative touches to your yard such as statues, birdhouses, pinwheels, or bird baths, it is best to put these away for your next house. This is also true for lawn furniture, hammocks, and toys in the backyard – keep yard furniture at the bare minimum and have storage bins to hide toys and tools. The cleaner the yard, the better the impression. Make sure you keep the yard maintained while it is on the market, either by doing it yourself or hiring landscapers. 

Replace Windows

 Another important piece to curb appeal is your windows. Newer windows can easily update both the inside and outside of the home, but they also scream energy efficiency to a new buyer. Replacing windows can be costly, but a seller can expect an 89.6% return on their investment. If you cannot afford to replace all your windows at once, try to prioritize those facing the entrance or the street first in order to provide a good first impression to potential buyers.

Bathrooms

 Bathrooms are another room that can win over a buyer. Whether you are considering a full remodel, or just minor updates, the seller can expect over a 90% return on investment, with some carefully selected minor updates resulting in over 100% ROI.  Consider the following updates:

  • Replacing sinks, tubs and toilets for matching ones
  • Replace or refinish old vanities with new countertops and cabinets
  • Replace old, worn flooring for a sleek, neutral tile floor
  • Consider switching out tub/shower combos for a built-in shower with glass enclosure
  • Update vanity mirror and lighting with a focus on making the bathroom well-lit
  • Switch out old vents for new vents
  • Replace shower/tub fixtures and sink faucets to newer matching ones with more functionality (adjustable, pull-outs, rain feature, etc.)
  • Give it a fresh coat of neutral paint

Bathrooms are a room where the cleaner, the better. If any of the fixtures have staining, corrosion or pitting from age, it is best to replace them. Be sure to update all the soft furnishings as well such as new towels, bathmats, and shower curtains. Find a way to easily hide all your personal items so buyers can feel the elegance of your new bathroom without feeling like they are invading your privacy. If you cannot afford to update all your bathrooms, prioritize the master bathroom with the most updates, and do minor adjustments in your other bathrooms.

New Entry Door

Remember what we said about curb appeal? A new, welcoming entry door can really put the cherry on top when it comes to your first impression to buyers. Consider replacing or refurbishing an older door to make it look bright and new. If the sidelights have become old and outdated, have them replaced. If your front door does not have sidelights or a transom, consider having them installed to help give elegance and more natural light to your entryway. Take a careful look at your entryway steps. Concrete steps are best replaced with stone, and old wood porches may need to be stripped and repainted. An important feature to pay attention to are any handrails. These should be clean, modern and sturdy. Finally, consider updating the walkway to the front door with new stone or brick, lighting and plantings. 

Exterior Structure

 The addition of an exterior structure can maximize the value of your home and bring some additional space for entertainment or relaxing. Popular additions tend to be porches, decks or patios. Once the exterior structure is complete, be sure to decorate cleanly and wisely, with modern outdoor furniture and updated appliances such as barbecues, fire tables, or heating lamps. If you have the room to expand, this can give a buyer north of a 90% return on investment, as well as provide some much-needed leisure area as you get through the selling process of your home. 

We hope these improvements spark clever ideas for you as you analyze what needs to get done around your home, and you plan your budget. Speaking of budget, do not forget about the little things. Cheaper and smaller updates such as a fresh coat of paint, updated electrical outlets and switches, new fixtures such as lights and door handles, or new flooring, can have a significant impact. If you need help strategizing and performing your home improvements, do not hesitate to contact us!