When people think about home improvement projects, they tend to think BIG. Remodeled kitchens and bathrooms top the list. Not only do these big projects make your home more enjoyable to live in while you are still there, they tend to make your house easier to sell when you are ready to move.
However, big projects are not always affordable, or necessary, to really add some style and sophistication to your home.
Before talking about the finishing touches, you have to take care of the basics first. Your first step is to focus on home maintenance. Home maintenance isn’t glamorous and fun, but it is necessary. Potential buyers notice dirty houses, wood rot, ceiling stains, burnt out light bulbs, and banged up baseboards. After you take care of those details it is time to declutter. Whether you are moving or staying, decluttering is the cheapest way to make your house feel more comfortable. After living in my current home for 5 ½ years I finally got around to decluttering my spice cabinet last week. Trust me, life is better without expired cumin.
Now you’re ready to add some Finishing Touches!
#1. Your Exterior Entrance
You may not realize how much time a potential buyer stands outside your front door. While agents are working on getting the front door key out of the lockbox, buyers are taking in every detail. Making sure this small area is perfect makes a big first impression.
Clean and repaint your front door if the color has faded. If the door is really beat up, replacing may be your best option.
If your front door handles and locks are tarnished or outdated, replace them with something classy that will have mass appeal.
Exchange your old worn out door mat with a new one. It looks good and helps people clean off their shoes prior to walking in.
Replace your doorbell. If you have a doorbell that is broken or dirty, replace it with a nice new one. Remember, the doorbell is often the first thing people physically touch on your house. You want to make sure it reflects your home in a positive light.
#2. Minor Kitchen Remodel
The kitchen is the heart of the home so you want it to look great. If you don’t have knobs on your cabinets, add knobs. If you have outdated knobs, replace them with new ones. Adding knobs is like adding earrings to your outfit. They may not be the focal point but they finish off your look.
Add crown molding to the top of your cabinets if they do not reach the ceiling. Crown molding makes cabinets look taller, classier, and more expensive.
Replace your old kitchen faucet with a new one. This automatically takes away the hard water stains that tend to accumulate around the bottom of faucets.
#3. Minor Bathroom Remodel
The most important thing to remember when sprucing up your bathroom is buyers and visitors want bathrooms that look sparkling clean. Once you have removed any mildew build up and soap scum it is time to give your bathroom a “spa-like” feeling. This look can be created by replacing your floor mats with new, light colored mats. Add soft, fluffy, neutral colored towels to your towel racks. For a pop of color, add a decorative hand towel or a tasteful flower arrangement.
Hard water stains need to be addressed around bathroom fixtures too. Replacing faucets and shower heads may be necessary.
Lastly, replace your toilet seat and cover. This is an inexpensive fix that everyone appreciates.
#4. Closet Organiztion
Buyers love it when closets have an organization system already in place. This includes shoe racks, built in shelves, tie & belt hangers, and loads of hanging space. The days of one wire rack are long gone. Closet systems vary greatly in price depending on what you chose. For the budget conscious, home improvement stores offer wire kits that you can install yourself. Wood closet systems are more expensive and may need to be done by a professional, but they can add some serious value to a buyer who has a lot to store.
#5. Patio Perfect
Outdoor living spaces are a huge trend right now in the Tampa Bay area. Outdoor kitchens and living rooms are popping up all over. If you don’t have the space for an outdoor kitchen, just sprucing up your patio will create a nice outdoor living space. Paint your concrete a nice warm, neutral color. It automatically makes the area look more finished. Adding a decorative outdoor rug and pillows gives the area some personality. Some inexpensive furniture finishes the look.
I hope these ideas help you get the most money for your home or help you enjoy your home for many more years to come!
Melanie Atkinson is a Realtor with The Wood Team at Coldwell Banker. She can be reached at 813-368-6084 or Melanie@Woodteamrealty.com
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