Preparing For Success!

Content provided by our partner Stephanie Liskowitz, Keller Williams ~

As we are homebound over the next few weeks, it’s a great time to plan for success by focusing on home projects or tasks that increase the value of your home.  People ask me all the time, what work should they do to get the best return on investment. I always steer clear of costly renovations as they are not likely to get a positive return on the sellers investment UNLESS, they can be done for below market value (ie.. kitchen cabinets purchased on sale and installed by the home seller.)


Below is a list of simple tasks that can make a big difference in your home sale value:

  1. Improve curb appeal-Lawn and landscaping neat and clean, no peeling paint or debris on the outside of the house. 
  2. Declutter-This is very important. Less is more when selling a home. It is important that a house is neat, toys and household items placed in closets. Personal accent pieces should be kept to a minimum. Remember a home buyer wants to envision themselves in the home.
  3. Deep clean-Buyers always respond to a clean home.  Hardwood floors should be shiny and carpets clean.  Walls clean of marks. Window sills dusted.
  4. Natural light in rooms-This is very important. Buyers want light bright homes.  When showing pull drapes and blinds back. If you have heavy valences, I would recommend removing them.
  5. Paint the interior with neutral tones-This can be very inexpensive and makes a dated home look more current.  Pick colors like greys and whites. They make a home look newer and bigger.
  6. Pay attention to the smells– The smell of a home impacts the buyer’s first impression.  It is hard with animals because we don’t always notice there is an odor in a home.  I recommend light smelling room fresheners. Not too heavy as a buyer can fear you are masking something.

Inexpensive Upgrades that can go a long way:

  1. Update light fixtures-Trendy light fixtures make a home look more updated and current.  They can also be purchased very inexpensively. I have seen inexpensive and trendy lighting fixtures actually sell a home.  Many can be purchased for under $250.
  2. Spruce up bathroom-Bathroom renovations don’t have to cost a lot of money.  A new vanity, light and mirror can completely change the perception of a bathroom and if you are handy, new tile can be a home run.
  3. Update the kitchen– The kitchen is the most important room in the house for a home sale.  I am cautious about making recommendations for this room as they can be costly. Pay attention to the color of the walls and the clutter. A clean sleek look is the style for the kitchen.  If you can make upgrades inexpensively, it may be worth doing. Painted cabinets can make a big difference. I recently had clients that did a simple paint job of their cabinets to white for just $1000 and we sold the home very quickly for asking price.  I am confident that this would not have happened without the upgrade.

Work together with your real estate professional to determine the best strategy.  The objective is to get you more money back than what you spent on the improvement.  I am always very thoughtful about these recommendations. Also, timing needs to be considered as well.  I have many clients that want to hold off listing until projects are complete. This is not always the best decision. Granted you want to put your best foot forward, the market will not wait for your home. If buyers are out in full force, your home needs to be on the market.  If you wait you could miss the boat.

I am confident the market will pick back up in full force once we get through this crisis. Plan for success now so when the market turns, you can put your best foot forward. There is NO HOUSING INVENTORY NOW.  There are going to be many frustrated buyers looking to make a purchase once quarantines are lifted.

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Stephanie is a marketing and advertising professional with twenty years of executive-level experience on Madison Avenue. She now merges her marketing and sales savvy with her passion and love of real estate at the Jersey Shore. Stephanie has personally purchased, designed and renovated over a half dozen homes at the Jersey Shore. As a Keller Williams real estate agent, she combines her business savvy for marketing with her exquisite home design services. Her mission is to provide her clients with beautiful, yet affordable living spaces. This starts with finding the best house for the greatest value and then maximizing that value with tasteful and affordable design choices. For the seller, it means tastefully showcasing a home and helping buyers see a vision that they can identify with and desire. Stephanie is equipped to offer tasteful and practical advice to making a buyers home more beautiful and a sellers home marketable. She is uniquely qualified to help you sell or buy your next home.

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