Preparing Your Home for Sale:
Steps to Spruce
Up Your Property
Whether you are sprucing up your home as a spring cleaning
ritual, or preparing your home for sale, there are some
tried and true tips to help you gain the most from your
efforts. In fact, some of the most important fix-up
projects a homeowner can perform may be accomplished on
little more than elbow-grease, and they can help speed the
sale of your home.
A thorough cleaning, a fresh
coat of paint, and yard grooming are the ABC?s of
preparing for a sale. First impressions are important and
a neat, clean look gives a good first impression to
Some additional ideas which
you may want to consider:
Plan a yard-sale, or a tax-deductible donation to remove
old furniture and toys, appliances and other clutter
material. Your attic, garage, closets, cupboards and
storage space will look so much bigger, and moving will be
easier for you,
A newly painted wall (in a
light or neutral shade) is a canvas to the eye of
prospective buyers; and clean windows brighten and
enlarge each room.
A well clipped yard - free
of scattered toys - allows viewers to focus on the
neatness of the home.
Fix dripping faucets and
repair any caulking cracks. Bathrooms are a key selling
If you are prepared to invest
some money to improve your home?s presentation, start with
the most cost-effective projects and remember to keep a
journal of jobs and receipts. Home improvement costs are
often deductible (when costs are incurred 90 days before
the sale and paid within 30 days after the sale). While
lawn-mowing and weekly cleaning bills do not qualify
according to IRS regulations, new paint, a new water
heater, or new gutters usually do apply. Some hints:
New paint indoors or out is
usually approved by the IRS for deduction if completed
and paid for near the time of sale.
New floor coverings (in
neutral shades) on kitchen and bathroom floors may be
another affordable investment which can speed a sale by
appealing to buyers? desire for a property that is
?ready to move in,? particularly if the current style of
colors are dated.
Repair broken woodwork,
loose planks, and creaky stairs. No buyer wants a home
that needs structural repairs.
Hardwood floors are a plus.
If you have hardwood floors, consider removing the floor
covering, especially if the carpet is worn.
You may want to reconsider
more ambitious jobs, however, if you are thinking of
selling the home any time soon. While bathroom and
kitchen up-grades generally help appreciation, not all
home additions will add value to the property - other than
that value which you personally enjoy. Not everyone wants
a swimming pool that could be a safety hazard for young
children, or an island kitchen design that restricts
kitchen traffic flow. A new deck may recoup its
installment costs, but new kitchen cabinets come in a
variety of designs and styles that the buyer should
choose. Talk to your REALTOR? about the improvements most
appropriate in current market conditions and you will do
your share to speed the sale of your home.
? 2005 Massachusetts Association of REALTORS?.
All Rights Reserved.