Top 15 Features That Sell Homes For More Money
As a homeowner, you obviously want to sell your home for the best price you can.
While most people opt not to bother with a lot of upgrading in their house, some are not afraid to risk their money right before selling their property.
In most cases this turns out to be the right call and the homeowners who add various features to their homes fetch a better price for the property.
There are also some cases when the investment turns out to be not so profitable! These are home owners who go out and do things – without seeking professional advice – liking adding a pool to their home – not knowing which things can increase or decrease the value of their home.
If you’ve been thinking about selling your house and want to do some upgrading and remodeling that will get you a zero or two more on the total but don’t know where to start and where to stop, keep reading.
We will cover some of the most sought-after features by buyers that can not only help you sell your property for more money and also more quickly.
Smart, energy-efficient choices impress buyers not only because of their design but also because they will lower their future utility bills, which is why they are increasingly more willing to pay a few extra bucks for these future benefits.
As the world is turning to a more energy-efficient, environmentally-friendly living, properties containing such features are becoming increasingly popular among new home buyers.
For instance, energy-efficient windows lower heating and cooling costs by 12%, while Energy Star-rated appliances additionally reduce hundreds of dollars on utility bills.
The price you’ll be able to extract from adding these energy-efficient elements will keep increasing as you add more of them, so feel free to upgrade your property as your budget allows.
Other energy-efficient elements you can add are:
- Solar panels.
- Energy-efficient light bulbs.
- Energy star rated appliances, which we will talk about below.
Who doesn’t love a flowery garden spanning over a freshly cut grass?
Your yard and garden are the first things buyers will see when they enter the property, and as such, you should prepare them to make a lasting first impression.
Some of the most common tips include:
- Planting tropical plants.
- Applying a layer of mulch to get that contrast.
- Shape and trim bushes and trees.
- And of course, plant colorful flowers to give your house that homey vibe and make your garden more impactful.
One useful pro tip is to take your time with landscaping as it may take up to several months for the effects to be noticeable.
Leave at least a month of time to allow everything to grow, bloom and look natural instead of looking like you’ve just thrown a bunch of things in an effort to make everything look better.
A splash of fresh paint on the front of your house is not only an eye-catching feature, but it’s also one that can bring you a higher asking price.
It shows potential buyers that you’ve taken care of the property both inside and out which will give them the confidence to pay a higher price for a well-kept house.
Exterior lights are also important for home buyers. Besides making the property more appealing, they also add a to the safety of it as they illuminate the space in front of the house.
Good lighting can get you far, and I don’t just mean the actual ceiling lights. You should thinkg about:
- Table lamps
- Wall sconces
They can all give a completely different dimension to your property and make it look more luxurious, stylish, modern or extravagant.
You may consider placing energy-efficient light bulbs and make the home even more desirable for those looking for more ways to save on utility bills.
Another thing to consider, as well, is natural lighting.
Make sure that you always allow natural light to come in in every room and that your curtains and blinds aren’t preventing natural light from entering.
This is something that is on the top of the list for many home buyers.
New windows definitely pay off, especially if the property is on high grounds.
It will create that “wow” effect the second someone enters the space and provide natural light that will illuminate the space and make it look more welcoming and comfortable.
Plus, if you opt for energy star rated windows, they can also reduce future utility bills for homeowners, especially their heating and cooling bills.
Energy-efficient windows are specially designed to block the outside air from entering and disrupting the inside temperature.
This means that you won’t have to turn on your air conditioner to the maximum to achieve the ideal indoor temperature during cold winter or hot summer days.
One of the first thing home buyers look at when they enter a house is the flooring.
Looking at old, torn carpets is really dispiriting and can potentially be a deal-breaker for many.
To avoid buyers running away from your house – just one minute after entering – because of horrible flooring, you can try and clean your carpets through a cleaning company or on your own.
However, if the carpet looks unfixable, it would be a better idea to buy a new one and not risk losing potential buyers because of it.
The case is similar with hardwood floors too. If you have any type of hardwood floors that have been damaged over time, you can buy water-based products for just a few hundred dollars to renew them and give them their old shine back.
Now, the saying “it’s all in the details” isn’t for naught.
The décor and small details are what gives the space its soul and make every room stand out.
Here’s some tips and tricks to help with the soul of the home:
- You can add different colored pillows that match the curtains for a chic look.
- Combine different vases and flowers to bring freshness into your rooms.
- Bring in different art work and hang it around the home. Your staging team will most likely do this for you, if you’re using one.
Basement Remodeling (If Applicable)
The basement in your house can be turned into an additional living space or an entertainment center that will add thousands of dollars to your home’s final price.
Obviously if you don’t have a basement and live in a Townhouse or Condo without one, this doesn’t apply to you.
One of the biggest benefits of a basement is that you have (in most cases) a huge space you can adapt as you want.
You can make a wine bar here, build your own dance floor and entertainment center, add a big screen and turn it into a theatre room, or buy a few exercising machines and turn it into your own private gym.
Or if the space is big enough and allows it, you can even turn it into a separate living space with a full bedroom, bathroom, and a small kitchen.
Now, kitchen remodeling does require detailed planning, space adjustments, and a good deal of money, but there is no need for you to go that far for a house you intend to sell.
All the kitchen needs is a small cosmetic upgrade:
- Assess the room and see if yours needs one as well.
- If there is some wall paint that has peeled off, apply a fresh coat of paint.
- If the wooded countertops have lost their shine rinse them and wipe them down with club soda to make them shine again.
- Or if the vinyl floors look old and have faded, cover them with floor leveler so the pattern doesn’t bleed through.
There are so many DIY cleaning techniques you can look for online that will make your kitchen sparkling clean and make it look brand new by only using ingredients you already have at home.
Again, while bathrooms are known to be one of the most expensive rooms to equip and model, you can do a few minor changes to it and get maximum cost efficiency for them.
- Remove the old, dated wall covers and apply a fresh coat of paint to make it look more up-to-date and newer.
- Replace the old shower doors with new ones or remove them completely to add the illusion of space. Many people won’t even look beyond the shower doors.
Some remodeling will cost you more at times, but there is no need to panic – this is about putting in $1 just now to get more than $1 back when you sell.
Properties that have specialty rooms like:
- A library
- Home office
- Theater room
Sell for quite a bit higher than those who don’t have them.
Home offices are especially popular nowadays as more and more people have flexible work positions that allow them to work from home.
The good news is: if you don’t already have these, you can actually create them yourself!
Or, instead of having a huge dining room or kitchen that are space inefficient, why not turn part of it into a walk-in pantry or a storage room for your extra pans, appliances, and tools?
It will not only improve the overall layout of the room but will also add dollars to the total price of the property and help it sell faster.
You can also turn the extra bedroom into a theater room with an entertainment center where buyers would be able to sit with their friends and relax on a Sunday evening.
Another convenience you can add is a secluded, private library area or corner. This will definitely win the hearts of book lovers and make the property even more versatile for potential buyers.
Other Modern Features
When potential home buyers see a few modern appliances and features, they know they won’t have a lot of investment to make towards getting the house up-to-date.
You don’t have to include the latest and most expensive features to make the property a modern one.
Sometimes, small things do the trick.
Home systems, for instance. There are so many smart home gadgets you can install and impress potential buyers when you say “lights on” and they do turn on!
You can also automate your house as much as you can through:
- Installing remote controlled doors.
- Light sensors.
- An intercom.
- Apps on your phone that connect with your home systems.
- Solar panels are another modern feature that has increased in popularity recently.
It’s another way to add to the energy efficiency of the house you’re selling and lure in even more potential buyers willing to pay extra for this useful feature.
All these modern features can cost quite a bit to buy, but they all add up to the overall value of the house.
Some more than others, but the difference in numbers will definitely show in the end.
A well-designed patio is the number one most-desired outside feature for buyers.
When potential buyers see a nice, furnished outside patio, they immediately imagine themselves spending their time there with family and friends.
This means that they begin to see themselves living here without even entering the home itself, which will later help you get a better price for the perfect home they’ve envisioned.
You can go for anything – a low, ground-level patio with wood furniture or a concrete patio with high-end elements, the options are out there for you to choose from.
Other Outdoor Elements
There are are some high ticket items that it can be tempting to add or add to:
- Sports courts.
- A pool.
However, you should be aware that it’s very hard to get a positive return on investment for these things listed above.
Other, less expensive ways to improve the outdoor areas are:
- Small fountains.
- Scatter leaves to add color.
The outdoor area is actually the ideal place to focus on when preparing your house for sale since it offers the best opportunities to add value to the property without investing a lot of money.
Freshly Painted Walls
In the end, a fresh coat of paint is the most affordable thing you can do as an update to every room to make it look more alluring and fresher.
A simple paint job was actually one of the things that helped so many properties sell for more.
In fact, Zillow has done research on over 32,000 sold properties to see which colors of rooms sell best and they found that houses with light shades of blue, pale blue or gray, and powder blue sold for around $5,500 more than other colors.
This goes to show that a simple paint job is not something you should overlook when you’re preparing your house for sale.
In Summary – Features To Sell Your Home For More Money
One thing all these features have in common is that they all add value to the house and have the potential to change the buyer’s perspective of the house you’re selling.
But before you get carried away with some of these adjustments, make sure that your property has all the basic features and that they are all functioning.
Having a landscaped yard with a beautiful outdoor patio is worth nothing if the house has mold on the inside or huge holes in the walls.
Meaning, take care of the basic things essential for selling a property first, then go over to features that will help you sell it higher.
The positive thing about all of these upgrades is that they won’t cost you a fortune if you do them one at a time, so you can start now and get your home ready for sale at a price that will return all the money you’ve invested in it until then, in some cases double or triple of it.