Summer is in full swing and so is the real estate market. Spring through to the end of Summer is prime season for home sales with multiple new listings coming up daily. The market is HOT and the competition is real. 

When a home buyer is walking through a house, especially an older house, they are instinctively making a list in their head of all the things that need to be done. This can be a distraction for the buyer and take away from other qualities that home has to offer.  

Even if your home is a “fixer upper”, you don’t want the buyer focusing on the old outlet or dated lighting. These things land on the TO DO list and could make the buyer justify putting in a lower offer. It’s all phycological, not logical, but to them there is work to be done, no matter how small the item.  

The good news is that psychology can be used against the buy as well. If you have decided to list you home, we have some inexpensive things you can do to help your older home show better…without having to do a full renovation. Let the buyers see your older home for the character it has and not the small simple things that are easily updated. 

Update light fixtures 

The light fixtures in a home can be a dead giveaway to the age of the home. The style of the ceiling light or chandelier can date your home. If you are still using halogen light bulbs, you are likely getting a yellow glow off your lighting as well. This will cast a yellow hue over the room that will make the room look older and even dingy. 

Think about updating a couple of key, statement, light fixtures in your home. Statement lighting would be your dining room chandelier, master bedroom ceiling light and bathroom lights. Replacing these with a fun, updated fixture to bring your home into the 21st century. Wayfair is a great resource for inexpensive, fashionable pieces. 

For the other lights in the home, simply change the bulbs over to LED. Not only will this be a selling feature but they will also give off a better light than a halogen bulb. Stick to the cooler temperature tones (4100K light). These are brighter and give a more natural light. 

Change outlets and switches 

A lot of older homes still have the builder basic, beige, outlets and knob light switches. Or did at one time but they have since been painted over 100 times with each new color of wall paint over the years. 

Go through the home and replace the outlets with new, white receptacles and cover plates. You will be surprised at the difference this makes to the overall appearance of the room. 

While you’re at it, change the old knob light switched out for the white flat switches or dimmer switches and new cover plates. This will give the rooms a more modern, update fell for a relatively inexpensive cost.  

Baseboards 

Changing out baseboards can be a little more on the expensive side but the outcome is worth it. By replacing the builder basic 3” baseboard for a more modern 6” baseboard, you will elevate the design in the room without having to do much else.  

If replacing the baseboards isn’t in the budget, give them a fresh coat of paint. Choose a color that is different than the wall color to frame out the room. Baseboards get a lot of beating. Giving them a fresh coat of paint will clean up the baseboards, making them look brand new! 

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Dings and Scratches  

Dings and scratches in walls and floors will definitely be called-out by potential buyers. That said, dings and scratches are part of general wear-and-tear on a home. If you are selling, walk your home and look for any larger marks and repair them. 

Fill and paint any damage to the walls. This could be nail holes from hanging pictures, dents in the drywall from moving furniture around or nicks along the corners from wear and tear. 

Also take a look at your flooring. Fill any cracks in tiles or scratches in hardwood.   

Clean windows 

Before showing your home, you’ll want to do a deep cleaning – obviously. But pay special attention to your windows. Make sure you give them a good cleaning, inside and out. When the sun shines through, do you get a streaky or foggy image? Streaky windows will be a distraction to potential buyers and could make it look like there is something wrong with the windows. Plus, natural light is a big selling feature. You’ll want to use it! 

If you need some ideas or guidance for your home, send us an email at design@letskissdesign.com 

Are you in the market for a new home? What things are you looking for when you’re walking a property? Share your opinions below. 

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