Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Which Home Improvements = Best Return

A dirty little secret many homeowners don't know is that most home improvements don't yield positive results when you do decide to sell. When we list a property for sale, depending on their timeframe and budget, we explore what actions we can take in order to sell the property quicker and for a higher price.

I came across this article today and thought it would be a good resource for those thinking of selling in the near future.

The top 3:
1. Clean / de-clutter - 973% Average Return on Investment: Remove clutter by storing items in basement, attic or friend’s home. Rent a storage space or sell excess items, if needed. Keep every room very clean durhttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif
insert linking open homes. Do pre-open house cleanliness inspections.

2. Lighten and brighten - 865% Average Return on Investment: Replace any burnt-out bulbs and use higher wattage bulbs, if possible. Have defective electrical components repaired or replaced. Make sure skylights are clear and keep drapes open during the day.

3. Yard - 426% Average Return on Investment: Store away personal effects from front yard. Hire gardener or landscaper to trim back the overgrowth and maintain yard. Make sure that your lawn has a healthy green appearance.

oh, and one more
5. Staging - 251% Average Return on Investment: Buy some fresh flowers, live plants and other decorations to liven up the home. Dispose of old furniture or other large items. Consider renting furniture or hiring a staging consultant.

I'm not sure how popular staging is in the rest of the country, but here in the Bay Area is very common. Since you're going to be competing with these listings, it's a usually a good idea to bring a professional staging consultant into the fold.

Check out the rest of the top ten here.

flickr photocredit Auntie P. Used under a Creative Commons License.