The single most cost-effective investment you can make to increase the value of your home is to buy a roll or two of plastic trash bags. Stuff them with junk outside the house -- from beer cans to raked leaves.
Nothing could be more common-sense than cleaning up the yard and exterior, right?
"You'd be surprised at how many people don't recognize the importance of doing these kinds of items. When renovating a house or preparing it for sale, spend money on things a buyer can see.
Any successful investor is adept at spotting hidden value, buying low and selling high. That's what investors do, when scouting out properties. They look for that house that shouts YIKES>
What a 'Yikes' house looks like
A house with high "Yikes!" appeal has weeds, a boat parked in the front yard and an old car transmission on the side of the house, nested amid beer cans. A rain gutter hangs down. Overgrown shrubs obscure the front windows, creating a dreary interior. People actually try to sell their homes in such condition, creating opportunities for bargain-hunters.
Protect, improve, appreciate
Families that spent more on home improvements also realize the greatest rates of price appreciation. In many regions of the country, homeowners recover as much as 80% to 90% of the cost of home improvements in the form of higher home values. Little wonder, then, that homeowners spent almost $2,300 on average in 2001 to help protect and improve their most important financial asset."
If you're getting ready to sell a house, you want to be among the homeowners who recover 80% or more of their investments in the form of a higher price. The key is thinking like a buyer. And what do buyers do? They drive up to a house and look at it. If they're not repelled by what they see, they step inside and look around.
Based on that typical experience, follow these guidlines:
Spend money on what can be seen vs. what can't be seen.
Fix up the exterior first, then the interior.
Focus first on the "Yikes!" appeal -- clutter, trash and bad smells that drive down a home's value.
- Visibility adds value. The improvements that are most visible are the things you need to focus on.
What you see is what pays off
This means that, if you have $10,000 to spend, and you can either spend it all on a new roof or all on repairing a cracked foundation (but you can't do both), you should replace the roof because it can be seen. Whatever your budget, put a higher priority on improvements that can be easily seen, because those give you the best bang for the buck.
People expect the foundation, plumbing and wiring to work. If they don't, they detract from value. But fixing them to bring them up to code doesn't necessarily add value."
Because an unkempt yard and ugly exterior can cause prospective buyers to drive away without going inside the house, you should work on those first. Clear up clutter. Then concentrate on landscaping. Prune hedges, trees and shrubs, especially if they obscure the front of the house. Paint. If the roof is dirty, hire someone to power wash it.
From the curb, "the roof takes up 30% of what you see, if you have a nice-looking roof, that goes a long way in curb appeal for the house.
Cut clutter, clean
There is no need to break the bank -- just that you spend a little time and money to make the place look better. You should do the same inside the house -- reduce clutter and clean everything. If you own a pet, invite a non-pet owner inside the house to sniff around. You might be immune to the smell of your pets urine, but the stench could make a buyer retch.
Deal with the hassle, keep the profit
People don't want to fool around with painting and replacing carpet and fixing the house up. In the world of fast food and instant gratification, people just want to buy a house and move in.
Seek the ADVICE of your Real Estate Service Specialist :>) me, Shelley Simpson, who is familiar with your neighbourhood