Sell your house faster with these simple and affordable Do-it-Yourself projects
Are you planning to put your house on the market this spring? Here are 7 easy DIY projects that will enable you to sell your house faster…and most likely at a higher value, too. The good news is that they are pretty easy to do, even if you’re a novice Do-It-Yourselfer, and their inexpensive too. Furthermore, you’ll enjoy your home more while you’re living there, so even if you plan to sell in a couple o years, these are great projects to improve your home’s look and value at the same time.
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7 Easy DIY Projects to sell your home faster
Of course one of the simplest and most obvious ways to make your house more sellable is to give your walls a fresh coat of paint…and you’ll see that this item is on almost every real estate agent and stager’s list. Why? Because it works!
Painting can make a huge difference. It can lighten and brighten up your home, and it can make it more inviting. Importantly, it can also make your home look larger, cleaner and better maintained. Grays and greiges are currently the most popular and the best colors for selling a house. Check out The Best Shades of Paint to Sell your house. Even CBS had an article on how paint colors can help boost your home’s value.
You can either paint yourself or hire a professional. If you do it yourself, your only costs will be paint, paint brushes, rollers, painter’s tape and perhaps a few other miscellaneous items such as drop cloths. If you follow above links, you can see my top recommendations for best brands/items and you can buy them direct on Amazon.
What a difference a fresh coat of paint can make…even if you’re not planning to sell for another year or two. It will be a breath of fresh air for your home.
This one is FREE…or close to it (you may need to pay for some garbage bags). I’m sure you’ve heard the term “less is more” before and it really holds true. The less “stuff” you have, the larger your space will look. This principle holds true for almost all items – furniture, knick knacks, area rugs (use a max of 1 per room), pictures on the wall. Just repeat to yourself, “less is more.”
Get rid of anything you’re not going to take with you to your new home. (Later, it will making moving easier and less expensive)…and then get rid of more…and then some more. It will make your space look more attractive and inviting. And, it will help potential buyers imagine it as their home. You may want to get your agent or a stager for advice, or even some friends that you feel will be honest with you.
Give items away to your kids/friends/family (if they want it), donate items. You could even do a garage sale. Toss whatever is left. We tend to accumulate a lot of stuff over time. You want your house to look great to buyers when they visit…and in the photos…which is your first impression. (And, remember, rooms look more cluttered in photos).
And, of course you will want to clean, clean, clean. Do a double or triple “spring cleaning” and clean EVERYTHING. And, then clean it a 2nd time. And, make sure you clean again right before your house is on the market and everyday/every showing.
3. Optimize Lighting
Lighting can make a big difference. It can make your house look lighter and brighter, and hence more inviting. Most of us don’t enough enough lighting. You should strive for 100 watts for every 50 square feet. Replace bulbs as needed and supplement if you need to. You usually want to have 3 types of lighting in each room: 1) ambient (overhead), 2) task specific (e.g. pendant lights, under cabinet or reading) and 3) accent (table or wall lights).
For most rooms, high hats or recessed down-lights in the ceiling (ideally with a dimmer) is ideal. In the bedrooms, add or floor or table lamp and beside lamps (Note: you can take those with you to your next home). For the bathroom, wall mounted sconces work well, but make sure they are up to date. For the kitchen, high hats, pendant lights for islands and under cabinet lighting work well.
Brass and gold fixtures look dated and don’t go well with cool colors for the wall, so if you have them, convert to brushed nickel or chrome.
4. Paint your cabinets and/or update your hardware
If you have mid toned or honey oak cabinets (or a similar color), they are super dated. They will make your house look smaller and out of style. An easy way to give your kitchen (or bathroom) an upgrade is to paint the cabinets (see How to paint cabinets the RIGHT way and you’ll see the best method and right type of paint to use).
And, the 2nd simple fix you can do (regardless of whether you need to paint) is to update the hardware. Go for brushed nickel or some sort chrome or silver (gold, brass, etc. is dated). Not only will something in the gray/silver family look better, but it will go much better with stainless steel as well as the most popular paint colors (grays and cool tones are most stylish and popular now).
Here are some affordable brushed nickel options on Amazon.
5. Update dated kitchen flooring with engineered vinyl plank flooring
If your kitchen flooring is old, damaged or dated, consider adding a engineered luxury plank floor, such as Coretec Plus. Kitchens are the heart of the home, and the area that many families spend the most time in. Hence, they can make or break a sale.
So, if you have dated or broken tiles, or unattractive vinyl that’s peeling up, you are better off fixing the eye sore. The good news is that there is a new category of flooring that’s perfect for kitchens because it’s waterproof, stylish and affordable. It’s called engineered luxury plank floor.
Coretec Plus is the most popular and reliable brand, and it’s an amazing product. You can read my full review of the product here. It’s looks like hardwood, and importantly it’s a floating floor, so it can be installed directly on top of tile or vinyl without the need to rip up the existing floor. (It’s also available in tile formats, but more home buyers prefer the wood look). You can order samples of Coretec Plus on Amazon here. Also, if you read my review, you’ll find a video on how you can install this product yourself.
6. Add cellular blinds
First, if you have dark, heavy or taste specific curtains or drapery, they have got to go. Even if you don’t replace them. Not only do these look dated (and chances are the buyer’s taste is different than yours), but also, these hide the light and make your space look much smaller.
A great and inexpensive solution is to replace them with cellular or light filtering blinds. These are great because they help you filter the light when you need to and they can easily be lifted when you want more light. In addition, you’ll notice when you look at the profile that there are hexagons (hence the name cellular blinds), and these honeycomb shapes provide a bit of insulation as the air pocket makes the room cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.
These are way less expensive than most people realize. In fact, you can often get them for under $20 per window, and in fact this one is around half of that. These cellular blinds are easy to install yourself. In fact, this one is super easy to install – no drill, screws or brackets needed.
7. Change the faucets
Sometimes, it’s the little things that can make a big difference…and thankfully, they don’t cost a lot. If your faucets are outdated…or rusty, consider updating and upgrading them. It’s not expensive and it’s a project you can do yourself to give your bathroom (or kitchen) a breath of fresh air. Here’s a great one for the bathroom. In fact, it’s currently a best seller on Amazon and it’s brushed nickel.
This little tweak can go a long way. And, if you need an updated faucet for the kitchen, this is a great choice and a great bargain. It’s brushed nickel, too.
These 7 projects are fairly easy and inexpensive to do, and they will definitely make it faster and easier to sell. Also, these are great projects to do if your recently bought or moved into a new house.