The initial impression your home makes says it all and this goes beyond just the first glance they get when they pull up. Most buyer’s take the time to fix up their home before listing it and some of these improvements include do-it-yourself projects such as making simple repairs including painting the walls and cabinets or swapping out hardware and fixtures. Unfortunately, if these jobs are not done the right way, buyers will notice and if the renovations are that bad, they might deter your prospective buyers all together. The following will discuss the most common DIY mistakes that homeowners tackle and ultimately mess up.
#1: Using The Garage To Add Livable Square Footage
Of course buyers are looking for more space but when that space messes with the flow of your home and feels forced, it can be a real deal breaker. In many cases, seeing a garage that was enclosed to add more square footage, buyers have no desire to see the rest of the home. Sure, livable square footage is nice but when it means compromising a garage, buyers aren’t interested. This space is viewed as a place to park and store things not used or needed in the home. And in some instances, this alteration takes away from the curb appeal of the home as it means the driveway ends at a wall versus the garage door as it was meant to.
#2: Doors That Do Not Open Or Close As They Should
Updating the doors in your home can make the entire place look new. Adding a beautiful front door will contribute to the curb appeal of your home but if it doesn’t function properly, it instantly becomes one more reason the potential buyer might not be interested. This holds true for the interior doors, if they are not installed correctly or the hardware isn’t put on right, they will quickly lose their appeal. Doors that do not open or close as they are supposed to or that bump into other permanent pieces within the home may keep some buyer’s from sealing the deal.
#3: Hardware That Wasn’t Properly Installed
Your cabinets might be in good shape, but a simple hardware update can make them look as good as new and up to date with the current trends. Be sure that you install your new pulls, handles, or knobs properly. It can be easy to assume that no one will notice the hardware isn’t on right, but potential buyers are sure to look at everything before they make an offer. It is a tell-all sign of shoddy craftsmanship which can make them wonder what else has been half done.
#4: Cheap Crown Molding That Lacks Elegance
Crown molding is used to make a room feel more finished and elegant. But when it is cheaply done and not finished appropriately, something that is supposed to make a room look classy quickly becomes one that looks terrible. Crown molding is eye-catching so not taking the time to finish it properly will have buyer’s looking at other trim and woodwork in your home for flaws. It can be the small things that cause prospective buyers to continue their search elsewhere.
#5: Painting Over Imperfections
Painting is one task that homeowners feel confident taking on in an effort to save money. Doing it yourself will keep it inexpensive while instantly making the space feel new when it is done the right way. But when you paint over surfaces that weren’t appropriately prepared, you are enhancing the imperfections, not hiding them. Cracks, gaps, flaws, and chipped paint will show through the fresh paint which completely defeats the purpose of creating a fresh new look for buyers to admire. Properly preparing the walls prior to painting them will make a big difference.
#6: Messed Up Mortar
When you start preparing to show your house, you start seeing things you didn’t notice before. Maybe you see a crack in the mortar in the brick near the entryway of your home. You don’t want this to be the first impression that potential buyers get from your home, so you gather everything you need to tackle the repair. However, if you do not know the steps to take or try to get by with the bare minimum, you can create the bad first impression you were trying to avoid. Failing to remove the old mortar and simply applying new mortar on top is going to look awful.
#7: Updating Your Bathroom But Leaving Old Fixtures
Buyers love updated bathrooms and kitchens. Adding a new vanity will instantly change the entire look of your space but not when you only halfway invest in the job. Even the most on-trend vanity can slip into the background when you don’t replace the old, rusty faucet too. It is important that you stay consistent when making renovations in your home. Avoid halfway doing projects as this can be worse than not making any changes at all.
#8: Thinking Paint Is Enough For Old, Dated Kitchen Cabinets
Kitchen renovations are expensive which means outdated kitchens can turn buyers away– they see it as an instant, big expense should they buy your home. But a simple coat of paint on worn-out, dated cabinets isn’t enough. While it might look good in pictures, buyers will be quick to see the flaws when they tour your home. Consider offering an allowance to replace these cabinets when the deal is done instead.
Tom Reese has 20+ years experience in helping his clients sell their homes for a price that sells and makes them a profit. Tom has helped his clients buy and sell property in every neighborhood in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati.
About Tom Reese
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