What are the two areas that we spend the most time in during any one day? The answers is the kitchen and bathroom. These areas are the business areas of anyones home and can easily set your home apart from the others. In previous posts I have spoken about the need, espessially in this current market to set youself apart from your competition. People spend a large part of their day in their kitchen and bathroom and this goes hand in hand with all the research I have looked at that has shown these two rooms to be at the top of the list of selling features when it comes to real estate sales.
Todays trend is to have an open plan kitchen. A big open plan kitchen can be good for watching the kids while making dinner, but not only growing families are looking for a larger kitchen. Open plan kitchens are also great for those who enjoy cooking and entertaining. When it comes to selling your house take care to make sure your kitchen is showing its true counter and cupboard space by clearing the bench clutter and removing excess decorative items from the tops of cupboards and in glass door cabinets. Also, make sure there are no additional carts, bookshelves or tables hindering the traffic flow.
When showing the house make sure the kitchen looks bright and clean. This area is generally the ladies area. In the kitchen you need to be thinking “how am I going to get the ladies to like this area.” This isn’t fact but generally the lady in the family will have more say when it comes to the buying process and the kitchen is a great place to start winning her over.
Today’s image of the ideal bathroom is that of a spa-like getaway inspiring a sense of relaxation and freshness. No matter the size or style of your bathroom, you can make it a more restful place to escape. The bathroom is a family area and generally a private area where parents are looking after their younger children or the rest of the family are cleaning and preparing themselves for the day or night. It’s very important.
Here is a list of things you can do to improve these two key areas in your home:
* Start with the paint colour. Pick a neutral colour that will flow nicely with the rest of the home. Paint the ceiling a tint of that colour and the trim a lighter colour. White trim can give a clean feeling to a room.
* Fix damaged tiles or replace unattractive flooring. Old vinyl tile with mold and mildew stains will really diminish the value of your home. Update with current flooring to make the room look more appealing and larger. Take the time to line up new tiles properly, crooked tiles or inconsistent patterns are not an improvement.
* In showers, sinks, tubs, or toilet repair damaged caulking and get rid of mildew stains. Wash fabric shower curtains to remove mold and mildew or purchase new shower curtain liners.
* Shine hardware. Make your faucet, taps, and showerhead sparkle. Use a toothbrush around faucets where it is difficult to clean. Turn your shower curtain bar, so that the shiniest part is facing outward. The eye is attracted by shiny things and it will make any hardware look new again.
* Sinks should be clean and stain free.
* Tighten or replace loose cabinet handles. Updating cupboard hardware can be a really quick update and change the whole feel of the kitchen or a bathroom vanity.
* Leaky faucets should be repaired.
* Old kitchen and bathroom cabinets should be painted or refinished. Do not be afraid to paint wood.
* Bench tops that are old and scratched should be replaced; an updated bench top will make a big difference in the offers that you receive.
* Remove garbage for a clean look and smell. Make it smell pleasantly clean but be careful not to over-scent with products that may be offensive to some.
* Allow natural light to come in. Tie back curtains and reevaluate window treatments. Window treatments should highlight the window, not conceal or distract from it. Clean mirrors, lighting fixtures and bulbs as well as, windows inside and out.
* Remove things that make the house and these areas personal to you. As they are family orientated areas people will want to try and imagine themselves in there.
By doing these things and possibly spending a little more time fixing or cleaning these areas can have a great effect on the selling of your home. I am not going to say that it will increase the value of your home – unless you totally renovate. But what I will say is that it will give your house that edge to stand out in the crowd. With sales volume the lowest in 17 years you need to have an edge and a reason for people to want to buy your house. I believe if you follow the steps outlined above you will be well on the way to having a better competitive edge than your competition.