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Top Tips for Decorating Your Home to Sell

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If you are planning on moving home in the near future, then redecorating could go a long way towards ensuring that your home is as appealing as possible to prospective buyers. There are a lot of home improvements that can help to increase the value of your property, but redecorating is one of the most high-impact improvements, and one that will offer the most financial return on investment.

What Do Buyers Want?

The main thing that buyers are looking for is a home that they could imagine themselves living in. This means a property that is clean, tidy, de-cluttered and fairly neutral in its appearance. This is why sellers ‘stage’ homes when they are looking for buyers. A polished, clean kitchen and bathroom, a freshly painted bedrooms, and a spacious, bright and airy living room will draw buyers in and allow them to fill out the home with their own imagination.

“Family-room-700” by Andwhatsnext at the English language Wikipedia. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons –

Things to Avoid

As sad as it may seem to you, the person who lives in the property right now, prospective buyers aren’t interested in the character that you bring to the home. Rather, they want a blank slate to add their own flair to. This means that you should avoid bold patterns or unusual colours. Your child may love to have their bedroom painted orange – but you should save that for the home you move into – choose a neutral colour when you are selling the home. Take down that massive portrait of your great, great grandmother, and put that special religious sculpture into storage. As much as it means to you, such symbolic items are unlikely to fit into the next buyer’s view of what the house could or should look like. Give them a blank slate and let them fill in their own ideas for the way the house could/should look.

Quick, High Impact Fixes

If you have the time, motivation and resources to completely redecorate, then it is worth sprucing up every room. However, if you are on a tight budget or a short timescale then that may not be possible. Here’s a quick overview of some of the most important fixes that will offer the best returns for you:

  • Maximise kerb appeal – mow the lawn, pressure wash your path, and repaint your doors/window frames.
  • Kitchen – the kitchen is one of the most important rooms. Declutter, clean and resurface counter tops, and replace or polish drawer handles and doorknobs.
  • Bathroom – make sure that the bathroom is sparkling clean and clutter free. If you can only repaint one room, choose either the bathroom or the kitchen.
  • Curtains/window dressings – make sure that each room is light, bright and airy. Choose simple, season-appropriate curtains or blinds. If you have imposing, heavy or bold curtains right now, swap them for something simpler.
  • Put away throws, minimise the number of cushions and other accessories in each room. Put ornaments into storage. Aim to make your bedroom/living room look as spacious and clutter free as possible.
Before and after ‘home staging’

You don’t have to spend a lot on redecorating. Rather than thinking about completely changing how the property looks, focus on fixing problems. Oil squeaky doors, repair loose handles and fix dripping taps. A clean, tidy and fresh property is a property that will appeal to buyers.

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