Buyers are emotionally drawn to homes that look up to date and feel “warm” and inviting. Not only do homes have to be clean, light, and spacious-looking, they need to have new and up-to-date touches to appeal to buyers. Here are some items to consider:
1. Slipcovers – if your home has old or patterned upholstery, give serious consideration to adding solid-color slipcovers to freshen and update it. Neutral colors are your best bet.
2. Paint – A fresh coat of paint to cover marked-up walls or strong colors will go a long way to giving your home that “clean, light and bright” look.
3. Remove wallpaper – in general, wallpaper is too personal to appeal to buyers, except it is neutral grasscloth. It is best to remove wallpaper and re-paint walls with off-white, sage green, gray, or beige colors, in keeping with today's trends.
4. For marred or scratched kitchen cabinets / tabletops, use a wood refinishing product such as Restorzit to make them look good as new again, without sanding and restaining.
5. Get rid of bathroom toilet seat covers and mats, which scream “granny” and “germs.” Bathrooms should have white or ivory shower curtains and towels for a super-clean look.
6. Use a standard window cleaner OR two teaspoons of vinegar to a quart of warm water to make windows shine.
7. If you can not afford to replace outdated chandeliers and sconces, spray-paint them with silver or bronze spray paint made for metal, and add new white shades. You can also use a hot glue gun to add bands of trim to the bottoms of the shades for a fancier look. Another option is to hang magnetic beads from the chandeliers.
8. Replace outdated switch plates with plain chrome or white ones.
9. Replace outdated towel racks and curtain rods. Wood and clear plastic curtain rods are out of date.
10. Create an inexpensive designer look on a coffee table by filling hurricane vases or apothecary jars with polished stones, glass beads, colorful candy or seasonal items such as acorns, pine cones, or holiday decorations. A grouping of three always looks pleasant.
11. If you do not have a headboard in the master bedroom, create the look of one by hanging a large horizontal or three square or rectangular canvases. Alternately, make an inexpensive headboard by having a big-box home store cut three panels of 3/8 “plywood
18 “by 18” (or two panels 30 “x 30”) for a queen-size bed, then paint them and hang on the wall. Black or dark brown paint / stain will give the look of a wood headboard.
12. MirrorMate frames are a great product for updating “builder standard” frameless bathroom mirrors.
13. Replace outdated brass hardware with chrome, brushed nickel, or bronze faucets or doorknobs instead.
14. Organic Touches – Plants, trees, and faux flowers add real warmth and beauty to any space. If you have a green thumb, by all means go for the real ones. Pier One, HomeGoods, and Michael's are excellent resources for faux florals.
15. Bring in trendy accessories, such as vases, fancy boxes, bowls with decorative balls, dark wicker baskets, white candles and candleholders, a new welcome mat, and sometimes a few new pillows for chairs, sofas, and beds.
16. Hang light-colored solid drapes (or drapes with a band of color that coordinates to another color in the room) in a fabric that fits the season – sheer, linen, or polyester (looks like silk for much less money) for spring and summer, heavier cotton for winter. Hang them up to the height of the ceilings when the ceilings are the typical 7 or 8 'height, to visually “elongate” the windows. Keep drapes pushed to the side to let in the most light and show off the view.
Now, buyers will be drawn to the beauty of your home, will remember it, and hopefully will start making offers! Happy staging and selling!