A major problem for a lot of sellers is the overwhelming need to fix every aspect of their house before it can go on the market. However, not every project will net a profit so it is important to focus on the ones that will give you the most bang for your buck.
Surprisingly, lower cost projects have the best return on investment. These are often fixing maintenance issues like replacing the siding, roof or windows. These projects typically return 92.8% of their cost at resale, making the project almost free. Buyers are quick to notice problems on the outside of the house and it may cause them to lose interest in your home before they have even seen the inside. Maintenance issues are also red flags because it appears as if you have not taken care of the home. When replacing the siding or windows, be sure to choose styles that will last. Because you are selling this to someone else, detach your opinion from the decision and choose neutral colors and styles that go with the rest of the house.
After all maintenance and outside issues are fixed, bathroom and kitchen upgrades provide the next best return. Rather than shelling out the money for a remodel, it is recommended that you just give the rooms a “face lift”. This includes painting the cabinets, installing new countertops or flooring. The buyers need to be able to envision themselves in these rooms, as it is a focal point for the house. As with the outdoor renovations, it is critical to choose styles that will last, rather than going with fads or your favorite color. After all, you won’t be living in the house much longer (hopefully!).
Remember, buyers want all the basics covered in the house before anything is added on. The first priority should always be maintaining the existing structure, which will yield the best return.