Increase Your Home’s Value

If you are planning to put your home on the market soon, it’s a great idea to plan ahead. While there are many improvements home sellers can make to their properties, it can get very costly. How do you know what improvements will pay off? Here is a list of simple improvements that can quickly increase your home’s value.

Before reading the following, I would encourage you to put on your buyer eyes. Try to view your home as if it was the first time you’re seeing it. Also, keep in mind, before I put a property on the market I visit the home and will do a walk through with you giving my recommendations.

#1. Curb Appeal

One of the biggest ways to increase your home’s value is curb appeal. This is the home buyer’s first impression of your home; make it a good one! Keep the grass mowed and bushes trimmed. If there is anything that looks overgrown get rid of it. Buyers can view this as deferred maintenance and you don’t want that to be their first impression. As buyers pull into your driveway they are scrutinizing everything and thinking “Could this be my next home?”

Plant some fresh flowers and put down new mulch or pine straw. Keep your front porch clean, tidy and inviting. If you have a decent sized porch make sure there are chairs to lounge in. Even if you don’t use your front porch, make it look like you do! Make buyers feel like they need this space because they will use and enjoy it.

Take a good look at your front door. Could it use re-painting? Maybe even in a fun color. Consider changing out your front door hardware and porch light depending on their condition and age. If you have any windows that seem boring or basic, consider adding shutters.

#2. De-Clutter

Large baskets and bins that are somewhat decorative can be excellent for decluttering. Because even if you ask for plenty of notice before a showing, last minutes showings are bound to happen at some point! We often have buyers who come to town for the day with no notice and they’re only here that one day. It isn’t as simple as putting off the showing for a day in most cases.

Buyers do not expect homes to be spotless, but unfortunately when a home is too cluttered (whether it’s clean or not) buyers aren’t able to focus on the home over all the “stuff”.

When it comes to the kitchen, keep your countertops as clear as possible. Do not have your counters lined with every small appliance you own. Don’t bother having decorations out on the kitchen counters. We want all of that counter space to shine!

Do not have overcrowded walls. Cluttered walls can make your home feel like the walls are closing in on you. When it comes to artwork stick to single, larger pieces rather than a wall collage for instance.

This goes along with de-cluttering, but do not have random rooms that appear as storage spaces with boxes and things. This can be a big problem in guest rooms that don’t get used often. Even if you aren’t organized, make it look like you are for a few months! Keep your pantry, closets and cabinets organized. This makes buyers think, “Wow, they’re on top of things! If their small spaces are this well kept there’s no way they let major issues fall by the wayside.”

#4. Paint

Many buyers are able to overlook crazy paint colors, but if your main living area of the home is not neutral you may want to consider painting it. If a bedroom or two is very bright or wallpapered most buyers don’t mind. But if every room a

Your exterior’s paint job may need some help as well, though we rarely recommend totally repainting a home to increase your home’s value. This can be very costly and you’re taking a chance when you don’t even know if buyers will like it. Instead, consider re-painting the door, shutters or trim if the exterior paint needs some updating.

#5. Miscellaneous Interior Finishes

If the first thing buyers see when walking into your home is your huge, brassy chandelier from the 90’s, consider changing this out. Light fixtures are very affordable at places like IKEA or hardware stores. They’re pretty easy to install or just call your electrician friend (everybody has one).

Faucets, bathroom lights, ceilings fans…if any of these jump out at you as outdated or if they aren’t working, consider replacing them. Now, if your bathroom faucets aren’t up with the latest trends, but they’re about 10 years old and seem to blend in with the rest of the decor while functioning properly, just leave them! There’s no point in spending unnecessary money.

Maybe this is just personal taste, but if you have a light fixture in a main area of the home that screams builder-grade, consider switching this out. Again, you can purchase nice looking, trendy light fixtures for cheap! This includes spaces like the master bedroom. If you have a huge master bedroom don’t have a dinky, little builder-grade light fixture.

#6. Flooring

In most cases we do not recommend replacing flooring, but at times it’s needed. If you have pets, consider at least getting your carpets cleaned. If you have a living room area with worn carpets that may have stains, it might be a good idea to check into replacing the carpets with vinyl plank or wood laminate. There are many options now that can easily be self-installed.

It is extremely common for home shoppers to tell us they prefer to not have carpet in the main areas of the home and that a carpeted living room is something they would change in the future. If your living room carpet is in good condition, by all means, leave it! But if it’s already in questionable shape it may be worth checking into a change to increase your home’s value.

#7. Clean and Maintain

Do a good deep cleaning of the inside and outside of your home. Take care of any deferred maintenance you’ve been putting off. If the gutter is broken, fix it.  The paint on the back door is chipping, re-paint it. There’s slight wood rot on the bottom of the door frame, take care of it now! You want as little as possible showing up on a home inspection. Take care of these things now, before your home is ever on the market. This will prevent the contract-to-close process from coming to a halt for something that would’ve been an easy fix.

For instance, VA loans are pretty strict and require a WDO report in our area, which will not allow any wood rot or, in some cases we’ve experienced, even any algae stains on an outdoor storage shed. If this doesn’t come up until the appraisal is done, a small fix like this (let’s just say a green algae stain that can be easily removed) will require a signed addendum, a re-visit by the appraiser and probably additional appraisal fees.

Don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions!

We would be happy to chat or to come visit your home. We can easily provide you with a free home valuation at no obligation to you. Call/text us at 386-688-0654 or email us at to set up your free home valuation!