Tuesday, October 2, 2007

10 inexpensive ways to increase your home's value

Thinking of renovating but cash is a little bit tight? Are you looking for ways to spruce up your home without breaking the bank? If you are thinking of selling your home, or just fixing it up so you can enjoy it yourself, here are 10 great ideas to consider.
The kitchen is and always be the nerve center of the home. Someone looking at your home, and I do it myself, head straight to the kitchen to check it out. Make sure the kitchen is clean, smells clean, and is updated. For the cost of a nice night out at a very nice restaurant, you can install new lighting, that is brighter and even more important, energy efficient. How about replacing the faucet. There are some really nice and reasonably priced faucets on the market. New kitchen cabinet door handles look great and really don't cost that much. Go for it!! Letting out the belt? For a few more bucks, how about new cabinet fronts?? You don't need to replace everything, how about just the fronts. You can have the fronts replaced, remove the drawers and replaced, refinish the cabinet box and in a short period of time, you give the appearance of brand new cabinets.
Appliances need a face lift too!! You can order new front panels for you appliances. Inexpensive and something you can do yourself. Sometimes the backs of the panels may be a different color. Check first before you spend any money at all.
Next to the kitchen, the bathrooms are equally important to update. Simple things like a fresh coat of paint, new towel sets, new toilet seat. Feel feisty? How about a new sink? I like a pedestal style sink. Really classy. I just finished re-caulking the tub. It was old and dingy and had to go. Cheap fix that looked nice also. Try your hand at re-grouting the tub. Not difficult, take your time, read the instructions. Some people might even go as far to install a new, one piece tub that fits right over the old existing tub. You might want to hire a professional to do this job.
A home I used to live in was nice, but the closet space was cramped to say the least. I went to Home Depot and looked around. I decided the best thing for my money was wire shelving. You can hire companies to do the job, or you can do it yourself. I just measured the closet, asked for some help in the store, bought what I needed and did the job, saved a few bucks and it looked great. Lots of options doing this. This added space and really helped to organize my tiny closet space.
I have seen homes listed as 4 bedrooms. I went upstairs and what they were calling the 4th bedroom was just a loft. A closet less loft. For it to be a bedroom, you need to have a closet. It had heat, but no closet. For less then $1200 you can frame out and drywall a closet. NOW, you can call it a 4 bedroom home.
How is the carpeting? Maybe just a good cleaning? Is the path from the kitchen to the door to the deck deeper the the grand canyon? It's outttta here. Just replace it. Not going to cost you a bundle, but it does look great. That's something a potential buyer is certainly going to notice. Hardwood floors? How about a good cleaning as well? Make them shine!!
Is the light in the room not as bright as it used to be? Have you tried cleaning the bulbs? Unscrew them, take a dry rag and just clean them off. You'll be amazed how much brighter the room is. If that still isn't good enough for you, consider replacing them with a nice chandelier. I put in a new ceiling fan with lights. I think surgery could be performed with all the lights. Real nice addition. Not to mention, it helps keep the house cooler in the summer.
As I mentioned last week, you can do a home inspection for your self if you are considering selling. How about bringing in an electrician, or a plumber just to check some of the bones in the house?
Again, curb appeal!! You really need to make a great first impression on a buyer. Purchase the mulch, add the mum's, trim the hedges, re-paint the front door. Just do it!
How about the front door? Ugly? Tired? Nice coat of paint, or a faux finish! OY! It will pay for it self at the settlement table! You can do it! Confucius said" the longest journey starts with a single step" or something like that. "If you want to sell your home, you gotta call Rick", and I'm Rick and that's my blog for this week. Talk to you again next week, and thanks for stopping back. My cell is 610-613-2840. I hang my license at Keller Williams In Exton, Pa. My office number is 610-363-0400, and I am at extension 2452. Just ask for me.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Selling your home? Here are a few things to consider...

Lets face it, it is a buyers market, and it has been for months. The days of multiple offers and offers as soon as the sign is placed in your yard are gone. Here are a few tips to help sell your home. Home repairs are extremely important now. In the past, If a buyer wanted your home bad enough, they would jump thru hoopes and except a lot of things. Again, those days are gone. There are simply too many homes on the market to except just anything. Fix it, NOW!! First impressions do count, curb appeal is very important. I went to see an 800, 000 dollar home the other day. The home was vacant, and it looked like it. The mulch was bad, the gardens in the front were in need of some serious weeding and the lawn, although nicely cut, was brown. The home next door didn't help because it was perfectly manicured. Trim the shrubs, put down some fresh mulch, flowers, fresh paint if it is needed. Is the front door lock tarnished? Replace it! Is the welcome mat, "Unwelcoming", it's outtta here! If the exterior of the home looks great, it will give the impression that the inside will be great as well.
I always suggest that you neutralize and de-clutter. Look, your getting ready to move, so pack that stuff up, clear out some closets. Get it in boxes, put it in the basement or garage(neatly). Any buyer will understand boxed stuff, but a jammed closet will turn them off quicker then PECO on an over due account. If you are going to paint, and please do so if it is needed, PLEASE choose a neutral color. Forgets the reds and blues. Go with a mauve, or egg shell white, or irish linen.
Have you considered having a home inspection done before you put it on the market? You can do it. I did. I found out that I had a few minor things that needed to be taken care of and had them done. Go ahead, let that buyer have one done as well. It's their money. You can also share your inspection with a buyer. A home buyer will recognize the value of a house that doesn't need major repairs. Just do it!!
It's no secret that buyers are "wowed" by updated kitchens and bathrooms. Again, I went into another home the other day, only 600, 000, but the kitchen missed. Dark, old counters, cabinets that were ok, but if I were in the market, I would keep on going and not consider the home. There is nothing wrong with just re-facing them if the cabinets are structurally sound. Make sure everything matches!!
Another idea to give a buyer piece of mind, give them a home warranty. Warranties can be purchased thru companies like First American Home Trust. If you list with me, I will give you one!
These are just a few simple ideas to help. You need to go the extra mile to get your home sold. Homes are sitting on the market longer. There are over 4 million homes on the market now across America. You need to do something special to make your home stand out over your neighbors. If you would like meet with me, at no obligation to you, to discuss how I will market your home, Please give me a call at 610-613-2840. If you want to sell your home, you gotta call Rick! I'm Rick and thats all for now. Stop back again!!