Home Upgrades on a Budget: Get Your Home Ready to Sell
If you’re in a “quick sell” situation with your home and your budget won’t allow for major improvements, don’t despair. There are many ways to prep a home for sale that won’t drain your resources, and you don’t need to be the world’s greatest handyman either. You might be surprised at how easy it can be to add value and visual appeal to a home and how much you’ll enjoy living in a clean and refreshed space even if it is only for a short while.
Most quick turnaround home improvements are more about elbow grease than technical expertise. Here are a few that real estate agents will advise you to begin with.
Optimize your lighting
There’s no substitute for a well-lit and attractive living environment. Most homebuyers are looking for a house with plenty of lighting, both natural and manmade. One good rule of thumb is that there should be 100 watts for every 50 feet square feet. And the more kinds of lighting in a room, the more attractive it’ll look. That should include ambient (overhead), accent (table lamps or wall lights) and task-oriented lighting (such as reading or pendant lighting). Recessed or high-hat lighting is always a good option.
If you’re looking for a super-quick and inexpensive way to upgrade things in the kitchen and bathroom, consider putting in new cabinet and drawer hardware. It’s amazing how much a few knobs and drawer pulls can add to the same old space. Brushed nickel, silver or chrome are popular choices among homeowners these days, and they go well with grey and neutral color schemes.
Break out the paint brushes, rollers and drop cloths: Painting is one of the best ways to get a home ready to sell when you’re on a budget. And it’s the single most impactful improvement you can make according to the experts. Paint can brighten a dim and dingy room and make it look cleaner. It can help add the impression of space in some rooms and using neutral color tones will make it easier for prospective buyers to envision how they might make it theirs. The nice thing is that you can be an amateur or even a beginner and still come away with something that adds real value.
Homeowners often make the mistake of defaulting their own taste when choosing blinds and drapes, deciding to stick with heavy, dark or stylized blinds that do little more than cause a buyer to calculate how much it’d cost to replace them. Remember, it’s all about lighting and plenty of it, so ditch the dingy blinds for cellular or light-filtering blinds. They can typically be had for under $20 each and they’re remarkably easy to install.
A potential buyer probably won’t zero in on your faucets, but they’ll certainly notice nice shiny new ones that give a kitchen or bathroom a lift and a little style. Many people lose sight of the fact that they’ve got faucets that were in style 10 years ago. There’s a wide range of styles and materials to choose from today. Brushed nickel is a popular choice and you can go with a modern or more traditional style of faucet.
Declutter and clean
It may not sound like an upgrade, but decluttering your home is essential if you’re serious about selling. A disorganized interior will make them think your home is dirty and has been neglected. Decluttering, cleaning and organization are vital to selling your home, and buyers will notice if you’ve come up short in any of these areas. If you decide to forego calling a cleaning service, make a checklist of cleaning supplies and tools you’ll need. And remember that the quality of your cleaning job can be limited by the quality of your cleaning equipment. For example, if you’ve been hanging onto the same vacuum for a decade or more, an upgrade could help get the job done right the first time. To make a smart, budget-friendly decision, refer to a vacuum cleaner review guide before purchasing. You and potential homebuyers will notice the difference.
Other upgrades such as painting, lighting and hardware can add considerable aesthetic appeal without stretching your budget.
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