Kathy Henne: Don’t Overdo It


By Kathy Henne

Homeowners who are preparing to sell realize it’s crazy out there! While presenting your home in model condition is one of the best ways to win the attention of potential buyers, be careful to avoid the pitfalls of over improvement that may not produce the offer you are expecting.

First and foremost, do not try to out-do the other homes on the block. Yes, you want your home to stand out, but not so far out that your asking price will have to be significantly higher than those of the homes around you. You’ll price yourself out of the market in your own neighborhood while waiting and waiting for those offers that aren’t going to come.

Second, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” Don’t waste your time and money on improvements that will not pay off. You can’t know for sure if buyers will respond positively to your idea of an “improvement.” When you make improvements, you need to keep in mind that you’re making them for your enjoyment and the enjoyment of your family. You’re not going to get back the money you spent on a dollar for dollar basis. You’ll have the enjoyment out of the improvement and you’ll be paying for that enjoyment. Before you make any improvement, consult with your real estate agent. They can share their past experiences and give you valuable insights into the likes and dislikes of potential buyers for your home. Don’t overdo it, and just stick to the basics.

Speaking of basics, the most important rule to follow is that of regular upkeep on your home. Keep on top of your regular maintenance so you won’t feel overwhelmed with last minute repair items. A clean, well cared for home will appeal to the buyers. They’re looking for a home that they can see themselves living in. Give them a clean, functional canvas, and they’ll envision the home of their dreams.

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