What to Update Before Selling Your Home


Many homeowners that are planning on selling in the next six months to a year wonder what to update before selling their home to get the biggest payout. There are a few updates that will help you to attract qualified buyers and help you to get close to your asking price. Here is a list of what to update before selling your home.

Get The Maintenance Out of The Way First

If you are wondering what to upgrade before selling your home before you start any actual upgrades, there is a list of things that you need to get done. If it has been a while since you have had your heating and air conditioning serviced, now is a good time to do that. Having your HVAC system inspected, and tuned up, and making any necessary heating and air conditioning repairs now will ensure that when you are ready to sell your system is in good condition.

You can lose qualified buyers if your home needs air conditioner repair. Addressing problems that can get in the way of a smooth sale now will save you disappointment down the road when you are trying to sell your home. Furnace services, ac tune-up, and other HVAC maintenance and repair are essential to selling your home.

Other maintenance activities that should be done before you put the house on the market include connecting with a roofing service to have your gutters and roof inspected. Having your gutters cleaned and any roof issues addressed by a professional roofing service now before you start other updates will ensure that your home systems are in great shape.

If you are like most homeowners, there are maintenance activities that have fallen by the wayside. Now is the time to catch up on all the maintenance that has slipped into the cracks.

Update Your Home’s Curb Appeal

If you ask a real estate agent what to update before selling your home nine times out of ten they will suggest that you upgrade the curb appeal of your home. Curb appeal is a term that is used to describe how a house looks from the “curb” or when you first drive up to the house. Curb appeal is what gets the initial attention of qualified buyers.

The first thing that people will notice about your house is the condition of the driveway and the walkways. Concrete contractors can help you to repair any problem areas. If your driveway is cracked, chipped, or has potholes, it can be a big turn-off for buyers. When a potential buyer pulls up in front of your house, the last thing you want them to think is that, by the looks of the driveway, your house is going to need some work.

A nicely landscaped front yard and a driveway that is in good condition can send the message that your house is well cared for. Consider upgrading your driveway, adding some plants, and painting the exterior of your home. If you do not want to paint the entire exterior of your home, you could just paint the front door, porch rails, and trim.

A lot of homeowners that are getting ready to sell think that learning about what to update before selling your home will mean having to spend tons of money. The fact is, small changes can have a big impact, especially on curb appeal. For example, as mentioned above, you do not have to paint the entire exterior of your home (unless, of course, the paint is peeling and chipping off) you can just paint the front door, trim, and handrails. A fresh coat of paint on these areas can instantly improve your curb appeal.

Update The Kitchen

There is an old saying about kitchens and baths and how they sell homes. Qualified buyers that are looking for a turnkey approach to home buying will be highly interested in your home for sale if the kitchen is updated and looking great. What to update before selling your home in the kitchen is entirely up to you, but there are some suggestions that can help you decide what is important to update in your home.

First, you should NOT do a complete kitchen remodeling that includes things like replacing the countertops, floors, and cabinetry. It is a risk that you do not want to take. You may get a return on your investment, but you may not. Complete kitchen renovations can cost anywhere between $30,000 -$60,000 and depending on the market in your area, you may not be able to get that money back.

Here is what to update before selling your home in your kitchen. If your home has outdated kitchen cabinets, you do not need to pay for new ones, you can paint and update your cabinetry with new hardware. This is a simple way to upgrade your kitchen in about a weekend.

Other upgrades that are easy to accomplish and affordable for the kitchen include painting the walls. A fresh coat of paint can go a long way in refreshing your kitchen. Of course, if the flooring is damaged, you should replace that as well. Replacing flooring can get expensive, but you can choose mid-grade flooring to help keep costs down. You may be able to repair broken and cracked tiles instead of replacing the entire room flooring.

It is important that everything in the kitchen is highly functional. If you have a leaky faucet that needs to be replaced it is worth hiring a plumber to solve the problem.

Upgrade Your Roofing System

One of the things that homeowners often hear when they ask what to update before selling your home is that they should update their roofing. That does not mean having your roof replaced, but it does mean having your roof cleaned up professionally and inspected. A roofer can clear away debris from your roof, inspect it for any necessary repairs, and get the repairs done quickly.

As an added bonus, when you have a professional roof inspection you will get documentation that states that the roof was inspected and what the findings were. You will also get documentation that you can share with buyers about any repairs or upgrades that were done. This can be a huge selling point for buyers. It shows buyers that your roof is well-maintained, so they can buy your home with confidence and not have to worry that there will be roof repairs in the near future.

Upgrade Your Deck

What to update before selling your home is a combination of things both inside and outside your home. About 67% of home buyers report that a deck or patio is a “must have” according to the REA. If your deck or patio has fallen into disrepair, now is the time to upgrade it. A home builder with deck-building experience can help.

You want buyers to see themselves living in your home and a great outdoor area where they can gather with friends and family can help to create the vision you are trying to achieve. Upgrading your deck or patio can have buyers engage in bidding wars to buy your home. Decks and patios expand living space. For example, if your home has a dining room or kitchen that is on the small side of the scale, a deck or patio can become an even more important selling point. Potential buyers will see the space as an extension of these areas that can help ensure them that your home has just the right amount of space for their family.


Remember we talked about how bathrooms and kitchens sell homes? Well, if you are trying to figure out what to update before selling your home, you do not have to look any further than your bathroom. Again, like the kitchen, it is NOT suggested that you start a whole renovation project in your bathroom because you may spend more than you can regain. However, there are some things you can change in your bathrooms that will be relatively inexpensive.

Upgrade the plumbing in your bathrooms by adding new low-flow shower heads. While you are at it, you should also upgrade the faucets in sinks and tubs. New plumbing appliances in the bathroom instantly update the room. As an added benefit, there are many buyers that are conservation conscious that will appreciate the low-flow shower heads.

You do not have to rip out the old vanity. You can instantly upgrade it by painting the cabinets. Paint the walls, have the tub professionally refinished, and replace the old hardware with new hardware. Simple changes can have a big impact.

Declutter and Organize

Spend a little money on organization tools for the garage, the closets, and other areas of your home. Potential buyers are typically, more interested in a home that appears well organized. The first step in getting your home show ready is to declutter your home. Investing in organizational tools for your home is something that will not only make your home highly organized, but it will also help buyers to envision their own things being highly organized in the home.

Clearing out closets and adding organizers that can help to keep your own things organized while your home is being shown will benefit you and make your home seem more spacious. Decluttering is a very important part of the process of selling your home.

You want to be sure that there is a clear path to every area of your home, even the little visited areas like your attic or your garage. Getting rid of the clutter will make your home seem larger. A decluttered home will sell faster than a cluttered home. As a matter of fact, many real estate agents recommend that you depersonalize your home before showing.

Paint The Entire Interior of Your Home

One of the easiest ways to update your home is to paint the entire interior. We talked about painting kitchens and bathrooms, but you should add every other room of your home to the list of paint projects. A fresh coat of paint can magically transform your home. Choose from a neutral palette to ensure that your freshly painted home is appealing to everyone.

If you have a few rooms in your home that have been painted in the last three years, you can save some time by painting the trim and any doors. This will freshen up the space and help it to look pristine without taking all the work that it takes to paint a room from top to bottom. Paint has the power to transform smaller spaces and give the illusion that the space is larger. It can add warmth to any space. At the very least, a fresh coat of paint will make the house look much cleaner. Painting is an affordable way to update your home and get buyers interested.

If you are getting ready to sell you need to know what to update before selling your home. These suggestions are a good place to start. If you have any questions about what to update before selling your home that is more specific to your home, you can connect with a real estate agent that can help.

These generalized updates are something that every homeowner should do at a minimum when they are trying to sell their home. However, there may be specific additional updates that you will need to do based on the real estate market in your area and what buyers are looking for. Learn more about what to update before selling your home to get the best possible price for your home and to sell your home quickly.

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