If you’re a homeowner considering a move, you may be wondering what your home needs to sell quickly. Before taking on a costly remodel, consider this: these measures don’t always recoup the highest percentages in return. Many sellers have much more success by investing in upgrades that boost their home’s value in the process. The best part? This becomes a win-win for both sides of the transaction.

1. Paint Key Rooms

Painting is one of the least expensive way to freshen up your home for sale, but it can cost up to $300 a room if you’re hiring a professional to do your entire home. Save big by painting just a few high traffic rooms, like the kitchen, bathrooms and rooms with brightly-painted walls. You can save even more by doing the project yourself (a gallon of pain averages about $30.)

2. Spruce up the Exterior

You never get a second chance at a first impression. The exterior of the home is the first thing buyers see both online and in person. Aside from keeping up the maintenance like mowing the lawn and trimming shrubs, look for any repair work such as a fading front door, cracked siding or a loose step that needs to be fixed before selling. Don’t forget about the roof. If it needs to be replaced, choose an inexpensive but durable option, like standard, three-tab asphalt shingles. They cost approximately $75 per 100 square feet, including installation.

3. Upgrade the Bathroom

Bathrooms can become a point of contention for buyers if they’re not in tip-top shape. Rather than taking on an expensive renovation, make minor upgrades that have an impact. Caulk the tub, re-grout tile, and install new fixtures. Larger, less costly fixes are also a possibility if you know where to look – a new vanity, for instance, can cost less than $1,000 if you shop around.

4. Make Kitchen Repairs

Buyers want to be wowed by the kitchen, but that doesn’t mean you have to fork over tens of thousands of dollars to make that happen. Focus on making repairs that cost well under $500, like tightening a leaky faucet or eliminating burn marks on countertops. For a cheap alternative to repainting your cabinets, consider updating your hardware in a modern finish.

5. Clean, Clean, Clean     

Even if the home has been renovated top to bottom, a messy appearance can be the ultimate deal breaker. Fortunately for sellers, de-cluttering and de-personalizing doesn’t have to cost a dime. A short list that will help buyers visualize living in the home:

  • Vacuum, dust and wipe all surfaces regularly while your home in on the market.
  • Pack your closets so only the bare essentials are left
  • Replace family or otherwise personal photos with neutral wall art
  • Cut clutter in cabinets and on bookshelves
  • Keep counter and tabletops clear, especially during an open house


If the project is overwhelming, consider hiring a professional cleaning service or organizer to cut through the chaos. A pro can cost anywhere from $600 to $2,500.


Lisa Southern Real Estate, located at 15 E. Martin St Raleigh, NC 27601, specializes in residential real estate. When you are ready to sell your home, our team has an aggressive marketing strategy that will get your home sold in less time and for more money! Call us at 919-800-0880 for a FREE Consultation today!

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