Put Your Money Where the Market Is

house moneyAs a home stager, I do my best to guide my clients on renovating their property in a way that will give them the most "bang for their buck". As many of us in the industry know – The National Association of Realtors states that those who generally spend 1-3% of the value of their home on preparing their home to sell, reap 8-10% in average price value (fewer price reductions, carrying costs or home sitting on the market.) This formula shows that using conservative figures, if your home is worth $500,000 and you invest 1% to prepare it for sale - $5000 - you will reap $40,000 in return. The investment figure includes much more than staging fees, this includes new furniture, using electricians, painters and carpenters if needed. Included in the "return" figure is the amount saved from shortened time on market.

You have to know what is trending in the market in order to make the right investments in your property. Consult with a home stager and make sure you are spending your money wisely. If you spend money painting your home a taste specific color like purple, you won't be making a smart investment at all! If you replace your worn carpet with a carpet in something other than a neutral color, you're wasting money. Even worse – if you replace your worn carpet and you are covering hardwood flooring you're throwing money away!

Kitchens are one of the most important selling features of a home. Many times our kitchens are out dated, and we don't have the money to invest in a new kitchen when we are trying to sell. Don't underestimate the power of a clean kitchen. No one wants to buy a dirty house. Consider refacing your cabinets. If you've investigated refacing and you're sure it is out of your budget, try painting your cabinets with high gloss white enamel paint. Then switch out your old hardware to modern brushed nickel. Keep your counters decluttered to show off the space you have – don't leave more than 2 items on the counter. If you use a dish drying rack for hand washing – put it away, no exceptions! If you don't have a dishwasher, don't advertise it! If you do have a dishwasher and still have a hand drying rack, buyers will be turned off. The drying rack spells "work" to the people coming through your home.

These changes will make a huge impact for very little money. If you don't like your current kitchen, buyers looking at your home will probably not like it either. Make it a clean, fresh space that people can imagine themselves in.