Low-Budget, Big-Impact Updates for Home Sellers

If you’re selling a house, you’re probably dreaming of how to get the biggest profit from your sale without having to invest a lot of time, work and money. These quick fixes add the most value for the least money:

  • Clean
  • Curb Appeal
  • Interior Paint
  • Flooring
  • Kitchen
  • Bathroom
  • Staging


They say cleanliness is next to Godliness, but when it comes to selling your home cleanliness is next to profits. A clean home sells for more money. So if you’re ready to put your house on the market pick up your scrub brush or call in professional cleaners.

Focus on both the inside and the outside of the home. Scrub every nook and cranny, every crack and far-reaching spot. Power wash the house. Clean the windows inside and out. Shampoo the carpets. Steam clean the hard floors. Tackle any grime in the bathroom and the kitchen. These rooms are especially important to be super clean. Make everything sparkle and shine, and you’ll be smiling all the way to the bank.

Curb Appeal

First impressions make a huge difference. Perspective buyers tend to make up their mind before they walk into the house. So trim your shrubs, cut your grass, place potted flowers at the entryway, paint the front door, invest in doorknobs, a mailbox and house numbers. Wipe down lawn furniture.

Interior Paint

Painting your home before you put it on the market is one of the cheapest ways to get the highest possible price for your property. Use soft colors like pale green or muted beige. They can still be neutral while greatly improving the look and feel of each room.


If you’re flooring is beyond steam cleaning or shampooing, you may need to look at replacing it. If you’ve got hardwood under old carpet, rip up the carpet and refinish the floors. When carpet is your only option, buy the best padding. Mid-priced carpeting will look and feel fine if the padding below is thick. Wood laminate flooring looks great and holds up well. Even fresh, up-to-date linoleum is better than cracked 70’s style flooring.


Check the tracks on your drawers. New cabinetry may be out of the question, but fix bent drawer tracks and slides, replace dangling pulls and tighten screws on handles or replace the pulls and handles.  If you’re cabinets are dark, dingy, or scratched; consider giving them a fresh coat of paint.


Get rid of any mildew that may have accumulated around the tub. Freshen and/or replace any discolored or cracked grout or caulking. Put out fresh towels. Replace the shower curtain.


Clean out the clutter. Most houses have too much furniture. By removing furniture, you will open up the space and make it seem larger. The rule of thumb is to remove two pieces of furniture from every room. Box up out-of-season clothing. Remove personal items from walls and shelves. Don’t distract the buyer from the home. Allow the buyer to picture themselves in the space.

Use bouquets of fresh flowers and bowls of fruit to add life to your room. Set dining tables and create small vignettes like a folded newspaper with a coffee cup on a tray by a chaise lounge. These small touches spell home, especially our idealized version of home.

When your potential buyers can picture themselves in the space, you’ll have a sale. With these inexpensive up-dates and staging ideas; you’ll be sure to bring in a larger profit.

By Bonnie Marlow, Realtor, Cisco Realty


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