If you are getting ready to sell your home in San Mateo County, or even thinking about it, look around your house this new year, and try to decide what to do to get it ready. I am going to give you some simple improvements that will give you a good ROI, and some to stay away from.
Kitchens can sell a home. It’s the heart of the house, the heart of the family and the place where friends and family gather. If your kitchen needs work and you can find the money, redo it. New cabinets, counters, sink and faucets, and new appliances sell a home. A medium priced kitchen remodel runs around $40,000 ROI? Almost always 100%. If your kitchen was done within the past decade, look at the appliance and replace those. ROI? 100%.
Bathrooms. If you can, spruce up the master bath. If you live in one of the homes built in the 1920’s or 30’s and have the black and something colored tile, leave it. The quality of that tile runs circles around what we have today. Work with thecolor and look at your tub. That’s where we see wear and tear. There are companies around who will come in and refinish your tub. ROI? 100%
Landscaping. You must, must, must have a neat yard. Does the grass need reseeding? Cut it out and put in sod. Have someone come in and weed. Plant flowers. Put bark around bare spots under trees. have trees pruned. Pick up fruit that’s fallen on the ground. 100% ROI. If your patio is in bad shape replace it. A new concrete patio runs several thousand dollars and will dramatically improve the look of your backyard. ROI? 100%.
Decks. They are the biggest issue for Pest companies. If your deck is bad, you are given two options. One tear it out. Two replace it with Trax a synthetic material that is pest resistant. ROI? 75%
Painting trim on your house may be all it needs. Power wash the siding. Paint your front door an inviting color. Put fresh plants next to the door. Hand a wreath on the door. Make it welcoming. ROI? 100%
What not to do? Don’t refinish floors in a house that needs to be remodeled. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen this done and what a waste of money it is for the seller. ROI? $0.
Don’t over improve for your neighborhood. If you live in an entry level neighborhood with mostly first time buyers do just enough to make your house sparkle but don’t over improve it. No one wants to buy the most expensive house in the neighborhood and you will not see a ROI.
Don’t make your house too different from the others by adding rooms that make no sense to anyone else but you and your family. Remember the Winchester Mystery House? I’ve seen plenty of silly kinds of additions in homes and they sit on the market for a long, long time. ROI? $0
Finally, DO invest in the cost of a stager. The Stager is a professional who can help you both inside and outside of the house. Their practiced eye and keen sense of what’s going on in the market will help show of your house to its best. Whether you have to move your furnishing out prior to the sale and have them bring in their furniture, or have them supply only a few extra pieces to fill in it’s well worth it. If you are like so many of us and your house is cluttered, the Stager will help you clear out the house. They are there to help your ROI and generally can add between 15% and 20% to the selling price. That is one heck of an ROI in my opinion.
Remember, don’t over improve your home for your neighborhood. It makes no difference whether it’s an entry level, mid-level or high end home. Look around at the homes for sale and see what’s been done to them to enhance their look and appeal. Follow suit.