Looking to Sell? How Do I Achieve Top Dollar? – January 2015

by Tracey Sparrow

There are numerous things you can do to add value to your home. Some won’t break the bank, others will. It is all about determining whether the investment made can be recuperated and ultimately doubled, or even tripled.

Each decision you make about investing in your home needs to be made in isolation (geographically) and in regards to your potential target market.

Remember the old advice, “Never buy the nicest house in the worst street – look to buy the worst house in the nicest street”. You can have the best house, but if you pour money into it and it is in a bad location, it is likely that your investment will not be realized. Oppositely though, if you purchased in a nicer area and the investment has made the house look like those (or even better), it is likely that the money has been well spent and you’ll see a great return on your investment (ROI).

There are five general dos and don’ts that may help with you in search of the extra dollar.

  1. Paint the exterior of the house
    First impressions mean that a buyer can be enticed inside! If your property looks rundown or in need of a lick of paint, it will be used as a bargaining chip should the buyer put an offer on the table, or worse still, buyers won’t even walk through the front door as all they will see is work.
    The word of warning here is to determine if there is an appealing ROI. If you spend $6,000 painting the exterior, will you recuperate that cost? If unlikely, simply spend less money making the outside more appealing – cut back the gardens, replace the mailbox, or simply change the door knob of the front door.
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  3. Kitchens and Bathrooms sell houses
    Kitchens and bathrooms are generally considered as the two rooms that will sell a property. If it is plausible to update either or both rooms and bring them into the 21st Century, the greater the ability to move the house quicker and a likeliness to achieve a higher dollar.
    It is important to note that these are also two of the most expensive rooms to renovate but can make a significant difference on the bottom line. A face-lift can be carried out on a limited budget – simply re-painting unit doors, replacing door handles, and clearing surfaces can all add value.
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  5. Clear clutter and clean
    Kitchens and bathrooms are generally considered as the two rooms that will sell a property. If it is plausible to update either or both rooms and bring them into the 21st Century, the greater the ability to move the house quicker and a likeliness to achieve a higher dollar.
    It is important to note that these are also two of the most expensive rooms to renovate but can make a significant difference on the bottom line. A face-lift can be carried out on a limited budget – simply re-painting unit doors, replacing door handles, and clearing surfaces can all add value.
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  7. Paint the interior of the house
    Like the exterior, a lick of paint on the inside can also help add value by making the house more modern, fresh and appealing. Don’t go and change the character of the house – simply freshen it up, making it brighter and whiter which all leads to the house being characterised as fresh, clean, light and spacious.
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  9. Be realistic with your price expectations.
    Just because the neighbor sold for a certain amount, it doesn’t necessarily equate to the selling price that you can expect. Each house is characteristically different, will offer up different disadvantages and advantages and the selling price will also depend upon the personality and characteristics of the buyers in the market at a particular point in time. When selling we have an emotional attachment with a house. It is important to look at the house by the facts – size, age, location etc.

Moneywise has also identified 4 things not to do in regards to spending money when thinking of making improvements and adding value. Keep these in mind when you are assessing your options.

  • Never remove a bedroom when renovating. It is likely to cause an instant devaluation.
  • Kitchens should be functional and welcoming. ‘Unique, garish kitchens’ will have a detrimental effect on your desired selling price.
  • Most of us would look at a swimming pool or spa as a benefit; but a high percentage of the population only see the costs associated with their maintenance.
  • Maintain a natural décor. Your perspective buyers may not like the bright colours and patterns that you find appealing.

Simply invest money in the areas that you will see a return, avoid spending money in areas that will not add value, and be realistic with your expectations.

Are there any other tips you believe will help add value to a house? Share these in a comment below.  Or call us today and see how Irelands can assist you with selling your property.

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Looking to Sell? How Do I Achieve Top Dollar? – January 2015