To Renovate Or Not To Renovate?

When sellers are preparing to list their home they may be considering updating or renovating spaces that are old fashioned or outdated. We asked our System members the age old question, “To renovate or not to renovate?”

Go for bright and light

Instead of renovating say, an outdated kitchen, advise sellers to clean the kitchen thoroughly from top to bottom. Clean the stove, oven and refrigerator. Add fresh knobs to the cupboards, remove all clutter from kitchen counters and window sills, and remove the items for the top of the refrigerator. Clean cupboards and drawers and the inside of the refrigerator if it is staying. Be sure to repair anything that is broken. If you have wall paper, remove it and paint it a clean neutral color. Remove window treatments and let the sun shine in. Buyers like light and bright kitchens, so check all the light bulbs. Let the buyer replace things of personal taste like appliances and counters and flooring. For the final touch, remove litter boxes and pet toys and food when showing your home. Mandy Herring,

Consider where to spend

Don’t recommend sellers spend money on renovations, unless they are professional home renovators. Instead advise them to spend money on maintenance, getting the home in tip top shape, cleaning and de-cluttering! Rob McKibbon,

Realize it may be a matter of taste

Unless we’re talking about something truly unsightly and awful,  counsel your sellers to list “as is.” There is no guarantee they will see a return and sometimes the improvements can actually detract from a buyer’s opinion of the home. Just because you love the new tile floor doesn’t mean the new owner will. Tracy Larson,

Meet local codes

Suggest that sellers clean as much as possible, remove all debris and clutter, polish wood and glass, repair “dings” wherever possible – improve enough to present with pride. Furthermore, remind them that repairs of local code violations will generally help get a thumbs up from the local inspector and the bank appraiser. Preventing these (often minor) violations may help to get the loan passed and obtain the highest possible value. Remember, saving the buyer from contributing to some municipal escrow account and/or signing affidavits to complete repairs after closing should also result in a higher sale price. Joseph Washick,

Get appraised

While renovations may increase the value of the home theoretically, it all depends on local property values. Appraisals rules no matter how good the home smells, tastes or feels. Joseph Goodman,

Looking for more information on home improvements? Check out Money Crashers’ article, “7 Home Improvement & Remodeling Ideas that Increase Home Value (And What to Avoid).”


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A.J. Ackerman November 11, 2011
Trying to sell a house can be a time consuming, frustrating, and draining process if it is not approached in the right way. Here a are a few helpful tips. •De-clutter: Put excess furniture and belongings in storage, consider having a garage sale. Cluttered homes do not show well. •Minimize personal items: Photos and knick knacks show that it is someone else’s home. Buyers cannot picture themselves in your home when you’re pictured all over the place. •Touch up paint: Cover small blemishes within your home or on your home’s exterior. These small, easy fixes if left unattended, can turn off potential buyers. •Curb appeal is key: Making a positive first impression on prospective buyers is imperative. Excellent curb appeal = an excellent first impression.
Stevco Naumoski October 8, 2011
I apology, My first comment didn't appeared until i wrote the second comment. On the article says that there are 0 comments, but actually the comments above are waiting moderation so that's must be why i was mistaken... :) All the best.