In anticipation of the new TLC series Hope For Your Home, which premieres this Saturday, I thought I'd share with you host Kirsten Kemp Becker's five tips for increasing the value of your property. A veteran Realtor, author and real estate company, and owner of a successful design company, Becker knows a thing or two about acclimating your home to the current economic climate. Here's a few ways she says you can do so yourself:
- Plants on the outside. "The most economic way to achieve curb appeal is by refining your landscaping at the front of your house and by making sure the front door is the focal point. Guests, buyers, and appraisers will take notice of the entry experience and homeowners/sellers need to establish that emotional connection from the moment they pull up to your home. Remember the details: trim weeds, fix broken screens, hide the trash cans from view, and plant some fresh flowers in prominent planters."
- Paint on the inside. "The biggest transformation in the shortest period of time results from paint. It can lighten a room, create an accent wall, and provide flow from one space to another."
- "If you can't afford new lighting or higher ceilings try painting a neutral color on the walls and a shade lighter on the ceiling."
- "To give a room a focal point or create more drama around one wall, try your hand at some color by painting it a shade of chocolate or charcoal to achieve a designer's touch."
- "If you can't afford to remodel the entire house and change your floor plan to make each room transition smoothly, try using the same shade of paint in all the public areas and down hallways — consistency of tone adds a feeling of congruency and openness."
- Kitchens and baths. "Invest time and money into updating kitchens and bathrooms, but it doesn't mean ripping it all out and starting over — you can enhance what is already there. Learn to distract buyers' eyes from that which is not perfect by directing them towards areas that have been completely updated. A coat of paint and new hardware on existing cabinets and bathroom vanities can instantly update dated countertops tiles and fixtures. Take it one step further by using epoxy over existing tile or regrout to avoid demolishing and installing new tile, which saves time and money."
- Declutter. "Stick with the timeless tried and true paint colors, accessories, and furniture in order to maximize the length of time and enjoyment out of your investment. Paramount to this is how you maintain your home. There is nothing like clutter to bury a home's value. If a professional can't see the space, appreciate the finishes or easily navigate around personal belongings and oversized furniture, they can't appraise it or sell it for top dollar."
- Clean, clean, then clean again. "Even if a house has a poor floor plan, limited landscaping, or outdated bathrooms and kitchens, everything looks more valuable when it is well maintained and dust free. Pride of ownership shines through in a house that is clean and well cared for, which translates into higher profits in a sale and more attractive loan options for a refinance."
There's four more where this came from, so