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Looking to Sell Your House? Don’t Overspend on Getting Your Home Market-Ready

Sam DeBianchi
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There’s no better feeling than making a profit on the sale of a house and knowing that all those upgrades went to good use. Fortunately, over the past six years of owning and selling numerous homes of my own — making as much as $275,000 in two years on one of the sales — I have learned a thing or two about where to spend and where to save when getting a property ready to hit the market. If you’re trying to get your home ready to sell, there are some simple ways to sell for a profit and make major upgrades without going broke.

Up Next: Check Out These Simple Renovations That Seriously Boost Your Home’s Value

Room Refreshing

Though bathrooms and kitchens are very important rooms that generally see a great return after updating, they also cost a lot to redo. Sometimes I don’t want to spend the money doing a whole kitchen renovation, so instead I think of items in my kitchen I can work with. For example, I had a kitchen that had a 1980s flair, but I was able to add a more modern touch with a fresher, trendier backsplash and new hardware. A new kitchen can easily cost over $15,000. A new backsplash costs closer to $1,000, with the hardware costing about $500.

Related: 20 Home Renovations You Can Make for $1K or Less

Upgrade With Neutrals

I’ve had some luck over the years with owning some beautifully upgraded homes, those that have big ticket items handled and simply require a fresh coat of paint. With that said, even the best of homes still need a little work before hitting the market. Neutral decor pieces have always been my friend. Faux plants, beautiful hardcover books, vases, candles, diffusers, floor rugs, floor lamps and other miscellaneous, simple items that make a home feel warm and inviting can go a long way. The $500-$1,000 spent at HomeGoods and Wayfair on these items have always paid me back tenfold.


Nobody wants to enter a home that’s messy, and a prospective buyer shouldn’t have to step over your dirty laundry to see the master bath or open a cabinet full of clutter. But custom closets can be extremely expensive, ranging from $1,000 to more than $20,000 (a girl can dream of a $20,000 closet, trust me).  While I’m not Marie Kondo, I do find joy in a well-kept house, and my investment in organizers has made my house — and life — a lot cleaner. I’ve been able to find inexpensive organizers for my kitchenware, closets and baths all on Amazon costing anywhere from $20 to $200 depending on the space it’s being used for.

Related: How Much It Really Costs to Tidy Up Like Marie Kondo

Curb Appeal

A first impression is the most important thing in selling your home. As much as the inside matters, the outside is what is seen first. New landscaping can cost thousands of dollars and depending on the climate and plants, it may not last over the course of the property being on the market. For a mediocre exterior that needs to shine, I’ve learned that a good pressure wash of the porch and fresh mulch with more self sufficient-type plants for the landscaping can do wonders.

Watch Out: 20 Home Renovations That Will Hurt Your Home’s Value

Make It Work

One of the simplest things I’ve found both being a realtor and a seller of many homes is to take the time to make sure things in my home work and replace or repair as needed. The lights, air conditioning, surround sound system, washing machine, whatever it is, I know that any buyer coming into my house will want to see all the features it has to offer. These features have to be in working condition. A maintained home is a much easier home to sell.

Click through to read about home renovations you need to make before you retire.

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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Looking to Sell Your House? Don’t Overspend on Getting Your Home Market-Ready