Selling your home can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. Most people trying to sell their houses do so because they need to move for one reason or another. This usually means that time is of the essence, and they need to sell fast. If you’re in this situation, don’t despair – there are several cheap fixes you can do to make your house more appealing to buyers and help it sell more quickly.
The Importance of Fixing a House Before a Sale
It may seem like common sense, but repairing a home before attempting to sell it is crucial. Potential buyers will be looking for any reason to lowball their offer or walk away from the real estate transaction altogether. About one in four buyers will back out of a sale if they find any problem with the property.
Additionally, many people are looking for their forever home – a place they can move into without worrying about making any major changes or repairs. Maintaining your home in good condition will make it more attractive to these types of buyers as well.
This means that if your house needs any work at all, it could be a deal-breaker for potential buyers. Your real estate agent will definitely recommend making some repairs or updates before listing the property as a selling strategy.
Of course, not everyone has extra days in a week or a few hundred dollars to spend on major renovations or repairs before selling. If this is the case for you, consider the following fixes to attract buyers while saving money on renovations.
Cheap Fixes that Help Sell Your House Quickly
1. Declutter and Depersonalize
When prospective buyers come to look at your house, they want to be able to imagine themselves living there. You want to declutter and depersonalize as much as possible by removing personal items like family photos, heirlooms, and any excess furniture or knick-knacks. It would be best if you also considered renting a storage unit to temporarily remove any larger items from your home.
Decluttering costs nothing if you do it yourself, but if you’d rather hire a professional home stager, this will likely cost about $900 for the service fee and between $400 and $700 staging fee per room during the first month of your listing. Storage can cost anywhere from $100 to $300. So find what fits your budget and declutter accordingly
2. Give Your House a Fresh Coat of Paint
Newly painted walls can brighten up any room and make it look more spacious, clean, and inviting. This relatively cheap and easy fix can significantly affect how quickly your house sells. Your home value could potentially increase by $4,000 just by adding a fresh coat of paint!
But repainting an entire house can be expensive. Professional painters usually charge between $20 and $50 per hour, with varied pricing for different rooms. Painting the ideal living room space can cost between $900 to $2,000, kitchens and bathrooms at $300 to $750, and bathrooms at $150 to $300. This means that the cost of repainting an entire house will depend on how many rooms your house has and how big each room is.
DIY painting can save you a lot of money, but it will take more time and effort on your part. If you decide to go this route, you can limit your budget to around $200 to $300, plus a lot of elbow grease.
3. Update Your Hardware
One of the quickest and cheapest ways to give your house a fresh look is to update your hardware. This includes cabinet pulls, door knobs, and faucets. Replacing just one of these items can cost as little as $5, but it can make a big difference in the overall look of your house.
You could also replace all your light fixtures. Depending on the size and style of your house, this could cost anywhere from $50 for regular fixtures to $1,500 for chandeliers. You will likely need a professional electrician for this job, which could cost an additional fee of $65 to $175.
4. Give the Front Door a Makeover
The front door is the first thing prospective buyers will see when they look at your house. Most people want their house to make an excellent first impression, so a front door makeover can go a long way. Painting or staining your front door is easy and relatively cheap (only around $125 to $250) but can make a big difference.
You could also replace your front door entirely. This will obviously cost more, but it will also have a more significant impact. Replacing a front door typically costs between $470 and $1,400, depending on the size and style of the door.
5. Fix Any Damaged Floors
No one wants to buy a house with damaged floors, so fixing any issues is essential. You want to repair or replace carpeting, hardwood floors, tile, and linoleum. Depending on the severity of the damage and the type of flooring, repairs can cost $350 on average, varying from $100 to upward of $1,000.
6. Install Crown Molding
A real estate professional will likely tell you that one of the best investments you can make when selling your house is to install crown molding. This molding is placed along the junction of your walls and ceiling and can give your house a more luxurious feel. It can also make rooms look larger and brighter, which home buyers are definitely looking for.
The cost of crown molding can vary depending on the material, the size of your house, and whether or not you install it yourself. On average, however, most people spend between $1 and $6 per linear foot of molding, with $7 to $40 on more expensive materials.
7. Get New Blinds or Curtains
Old, outdated window treatments turn off many buyers. If your curtains or blinds look worn, it’s time for an update. New blind installation can cost around $700, while new curtains can go for $200 per panel. Simple Roman shades start at about $100 each.
8. Replace Your Dishwasher
Instead of a major kitchen remodel, you might get away with just replacing your dishwasher. This is a quick and easy job that most people can do in less than an hour. Depending on the model, a new dishwasher will cost you between $350 and $2,000.
You could also opt for a used dishwasher, which would obviously cost less. However, it might not be worth the risk unless you know the previous owner and can vouch for its quality.
9. Update Your Landscaping
Curb appeal is essential when selling your house. You should mow lawns, weed your gardens, and trim your landscaping. You might also want to add some new plants or flowers to spruce up the place. Depending on the size of your property and the amount of work needed, landscaping can cost anywhere from $100 to $10,000. But if you do it yourself and only buy a few new plants, you can probably get away with spending less than $100!
10. Add Bathroom Storage
You can never have too much storage, especially in the bathroom. Adding shelves, cabinets, or even just a few hooks can make a big difference in the feel of your bathroom. Ample storage is something that many home buyers are looking for, so this is a great way to make your house more appealing.
Adding bathroom storage is a relatively easy and inexpensive project. You can find shelves and cabinets at your local home improvement store for less than $100. Or, if you’re feeling really crafty, you could make your own.
11. Install a Ceiling Fan in Your Dining Room
Many people forget about ceiling fans, but they can actually be a great selling point. Not only do they look nice, but they can also help keep your house cool in the summer. This is especially important if you live in an area with a lot of hot weather.
Installing a ceiling fan is a relatively easy job that most people can do themselves. Ceiling fans typically cost between $700 and $2000, depending on the size and style. Rewiring an existing ceiling fan will cost less.
12. Consider Window Washing
Finally, dirty windows are a turn-off for most home buyers. If your windows look dull, give them a good cleaning. You can either do this yourself or hire a professional to do it for you. The cost will depend on the number of windows you have and how dirty they are.
It might be worth hiring a professional if you have many windows or are particularly difficult to clean. Window washing typically costs between $5 to $15 per window.
The Most Important Factors When Selling a House
There are many factors to consider when selling a house, but some are more important than others.
Here are the most important things to keep in mind:
Of course, the most crucial factor when selling a house is price. You need to ensure you’re pricing your house competitively with comparable homes to attract buyers. But you also don’t want to price it too low, as you could leave money on the table.
The location of your house is also very important. If you’re in a desirable neighborhood, you’ll likely have more buyers interested in your home. Real estate agents often talk about “location, location, location,” and for a good reason.
If your house is in good condition, it will be much easier to sell. But it could be more challenging to find a buyer if it needs repairs. Older homes, in particular, can be tricky to sell if they need a lot of work, so fixing up your house before putting it on the local market could be a good idea.
The housing market is constantly changing, so timing is essential when selling a house. Generally, it’s best to sell in the late spring or early summer, as that’s when most people are looking to buy. But there could be exceptions, so it’s always best to consult with a real estate agent.
Finally, marketing your house is also important. You must ensure potential buyers know your house is for sale. The best way to do this is to list it on the MLS, as that’s how most buyers will find homes for sale. You can also use yard signs, open houses, and online listings.
Selling a house can be complex, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. By following these tips, you can make the process much easier and increase your chances of a successful sale. With a little bit of effort, you can be on your way to selling your house in no time.