There are so many do-it-yourself pieces out there to prepare you with crafty ideas on making fun projects for the holidays or interior decorating. There are pretty much DIY projects for anything that you can possibly think of. Today, we are going to focus on DIY projects that may bolster your home price when you decide to sell. A little bit of work and TLC can potentially boost your home price thousands of dollars. Currently, home prices have risen 10.3% in the first quarter of 2014 alone. It is a great time for homeowners to sell, but in the same respect it is a tough time to buy as there is scarcity in homes on the market. Regardless, both markets – the buyer market and the selling market – are still competitive and it is always important to out compete others. By following these DIY home improvement tips, that home will fly out of your hands before you even have a chance to say goodbye. This is especially important if you are nearing an accepted offer to purchase a different home.
First and foremost, clean the place so that it sparkles, as discussed in one of my past articles entitled, “How To Purchase A Home in Less Than Perfect Condition”. Get down and scrub away grime throughout the house. Replace any missing or broken hardware in the home such as old toilet seats or broken banisters on the stairs. It costs very little to get this done. Chances are that you have plenty of cleaning products already lying around the house to work with which means that it will be free to clean. The most cost here will be of any extra hardware that had been replaced, which can be relatively cheap given that you do the proper shopping around. It also requires a fair amount of elbow grease. This really isn’t a bad deal—just be willing to put some work into it! Homes don’t clean themselves, and the reward will be far better than the input.
Even though pets are our friends, they can severely impact a prospective homebuyer’s decision to put an offer in on your home or not. To avoid this, have your furry friend out on a play date during your showings. Some pet owners try to keep the animal locked in a room, but there are chances the animal will run out when the prospective buyer pops in to take a peek at a room, and not to mention that not everyone sees our loved ones as cute and cuddly as we do. Some people are absolutely terrified of animals, and it can leave someone incredibly uncomfortable during the showing, and could potentially cause that person to leave the house fairly quickly. The presence of pets also indicates that there are stains or damages throughout the house, which can cause prospective buyers to be a bit overly critical of the home you are trying to sell.
There was one house that I was looking at a little while ago. After looking around I realized that the carpet was more than one color, and I could not figure out which color it was actually meant to be if my life counted on it. This indicated one thing to me: that the house was absolutely filthy. If someone can’t take care of his or her floors, than what’s there to say about the rest of the house? It was an easy reason to walk away. Standard maintenance shows in a house. Also, make sure that the fridge, freezer, stove, and oven are all clean and usable, otherwise a buyer can negotiate the price of your home down to cover the cost of replacing the pricey appliances and/or carpets.
Also, be sure that the house does not have any indication of, well, you. Keep the home impersonal – no family photos or large displays of your hobbies. You want to appeal to the masses, so keep everything simple, minimal, tasteful, but not so “you” that a prospective buyer is unable to visualize themselves in the house. If this is hard for you to imagine, think about the neutrality of a hotel. Hotels make people feel comfortable because their decor does not indicate the presence of other people (the good hotels, at least). You do not have to throw out your family memories of course, just pack them up before the home showing. Remove any large items that restrict movement in any way. Make every inch of the home tasteful, neutral, and accessible.
Lastly, be sure that the home is attractive from the outside; because when it comes to home buying, people absolutely judge a book by its cover, and if the cover isn’t good enough then it narrows the chance that that prospective buyer will even come in. You definitely want to make sure that there is no trash on the street. I know that I just told you to go on a cleaning spree and to get rid of any indication of “you”, but make sure that a prospective buyer can’t see so obviously that you just gave the home a total makeover plus clean out. Trash on or near the street can be a total deal breaker, so take care of your waste management at least a week or two prior to the open house. Also, whip out your green thumb. Trim the lawns, pull weeds or dead plants, plant beautiful flowers/trees, scrub the porch, and repair any cracks in the asphalt or cement. These cracks scream “earthquake zone”, and you want to make sure that your prospective buyers feel safe on the property from the get go. Make sure that the windows, skylights, and blinds are all clean and that the screens are intact. Fix missing tiles or leaks. Replace the screens if necessary—it indicates that the house is secure and hopefully has not been broken into. To facilitate natural lighting coming into the house, trim shrubs and prune the trees. Natural light makes the home appear happier and more welcoming. A new paint job can also do wonders for the exterior of the home. If you don’t want to do a full on paint job, rent a power washer and clean some impossible-to-reach dirt off of the home’s exterior. According to Money Talks News, doing a paint job or washing the exterior can boost the home value an average of $2000, plus, it is always healthy to have a day doing things outside of the house.
This is optional, but it may be a good idea to get your own home inspection. If you get a positive report on the home, you can use it as a selling point and make people feel more secure about the home as well as its electric or plumbing capabilities. In terms of valuing your property, don’t value the property too high. A huge issue right now is that a lot of buyers are very turned off by a high price for not as much house. If a home is priced too high, you as the seller may find yourself bringing down the asking price, which is perceived as an act of sheer desperation. Remember, the selling market is hot right now, up 4.9% in May 2014 according to Money Talks News, which means that you do have enough competition out there to make a prospective buyer walk away from your home without putting in an offer. An increase in home sales indicates an increase in inventory, so make sure that your home is easy to set apart from the others in that it gives off the impression that it is clean, functional, and overall inhabitable.