With housing prices at recent highs, this is a great time to sell; and, with still-low interest rates, it is also a good time to buy. According to the National Association of Realtors, 5.3 million homes are expected to change hands in 2015.
In an article published January 29, 2015, Consumer Reports listed five top ways to increase the value of your home. Here are excerpts from that article.
#1. Clean up, Clear out. Cost range: $0 (DIY) to $2,500 (pro); Potential return: 3 to 5%
Nothing drives away would-be buyers faster than clutter, grime, and the weird smells that accompany a messy home. Vital to the process is de-cluttering and depersonalizing the space as much as possible. Buyers will have a hard time imagining themselves in your home if it’s filled with family photos and other personal effects.
#2. Spruce up the kitchen. Cost range: $300 to $5,000; Potential return: 3 to 7%
It’s a real estate adage that the kitchen, more than any other room, sells the home. In fact, 53- percent of real estate professionals said the kitchen is among the most important rooms of the home to have in good shape before selling.
#3. Freshen up the bathroom. Cost range: $300 to $1,000; Potential return: 2 to 3%
Buyers want to see that a home is clean and well-maintained, especially in the bathrooms. 42- percent of real estate professionals surveyed said the bathroom is one of the most important rooms of the home to have in good shape.
#4. Paint the rooms. Cost range: $100 (DIY) to $1,000 (pro); Potential return: 1 to 3%
A fresh coat of paint is the quickest way to transform a room. 16-percent of real estate professionals said interior painting is an important element in fostering the sale of a home.
#5. Enhance the exterior. Cost range: $150 to $7,500; Potential return: 2 to 5%
You should not try to sell your home without sprucing up its exterior. Start with basic maintenance: mowing the lawn, trimming overgrown shrubs, applying a fresh layer of mulch to garden beds. As with your home’s interior, it’s also important to make minor repairs, such as replacing cracked siding boards or repointing brick walls.
For the full article: 5 Ways to Boost the Value of Your Home, go to www.consumerreports.org