We’ve seen those remodeling shows where homeowners take sledgehammers to walls, and cabinets crash to the floor.
Here are some tips from the other end of the spectrum, small remodeling ideas that are a big help to sellers. They are simple, creative, DIY… but wait! Before you shake your head: you can have someone do them for you, and you don’t have to be a Creative Type.
Small Ideas: Big Difference
These projects are worth doing, but you decide how much you actually do. If you’re a DIY fan, great. If not, you can still choose the right materials. The trick is to know your house well, and you’re the expert there.
One goal in small remodeling is to give the house a fresh, clean look that shows off its best features. Another is to spark the imaginations of potential buyers. You don’t want them to see the house as your home, but to imagine it as their home. 😉
This means following some tried-and-true rules, but also using your own knowledge of the house to its benefit.
The following simple ideas are inexpensive, and top agents agree they have proven appeal to potential buyers.
Helpful (and Maybe Even Fun) Small Remodels
1. Paint Indoors
Neutral colors are the best choice because they let good features show and present a “blank canvas” to the buyers’ imaginations. You know your warm and cool rooms, those with lots of or little sun, so you can choose warm or cool neutrals to balance those spaces.
Paint is especially helpful in updating kitchens and bathrooms, where “new” walls will take the focus off not-so-new interiors that require big remodels.
Cost: Plan to spend a few hundred dollars on quality paint and supplies if you are tackling this job DIY styles. If you plan to hire a handyman, your cost will be anywhere from $500.00 to a couple of thousand dollars depending on the extent of the work — the number of rooms being painted, and whether or not the removal of old wallpaper is required.
ROI: With the right paint colors for the interior walls and a job well-done, your ROI could be well over 100%. A nice facelift for you house and a more attractive, clean and modern look is what you get. If selling your house is the goal, then this is surely an important part of getting your home ready for sale. 😉
2. Paint Outdoors
A freshly painted front door says “Welcome!” with personality. Painting window trim freshens the first impression, but also lets you accent the windows on your home, or not. Having outdoor accent paint complement a flowering tree or your main garden color can be a charming touch.
Cost: To hire a handyman to repaint the exterior trim can cost anywhere from $500.00 to $2,000 depending on the extent of the work.
ROI: Getting your front door and window trim painted and exterior powerwashed not only welcomes buyers, it gets you money back when you sell your house.
3. Rearrange Furniture for better staging
Its placement likely reflects how you live, so rearrange furniture to minimize your presence and let the house’s qualities “speak up.” If you have a fireplace, arrange suggest a cozy evening. Aim seating towards a gorgeous view out a picture window when things are in bloom. Ask buyers to imagine a quiet reading area, or a sunny kitchen spot as a place for breakfast.
Buyers need to be able to picture the use for every single room, and you can create that use in the way you lay out your furniture. If you don’t lay out the furniture in a cohesive way, buyers could think that your floor plan has a bad flow or that it has too much unusable space.
Cost: Free if you do it yourself, or a couple hundred dollars to get a professional advice from an experienced interior designer or home staging company.
ROI: With the right house and proper furniture and lighting arrangement, you can make the whole home sale process easier, shorter, and more enjoyable.
4. Pay Attention to Small Details in the Kitchen
Speaking of kitchens (and bathrooms), buyers focus there, so details count. Choose new cabinet handles and drawer pulls, to give a uniform “look.” Hardware can be “country,” or “industrial,” etc., and can give a new feel to an older room. These small details cost pennies to fix (only $2.00-$5.00 per drawer pull), yet they give your space an instant facelift. Old hardware makes a space look dated, where new hardware makes buyers think it’s newer, and thus worth more, than it actually is.
You can make small scale changes in the kitchen that have a big impact, too. According to Consumer Reports, a kitchen renovation for as low as $300 could make you 3% more on your home sale. Spending that cash on drawer pulls and getting your cabinets/walls repainted will make the biggest impact.