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Even though houses are still flying off the market here in Lane County, you can increase your home’s value before you sell it. When it comes to home improvements, you can spend as little or as much as you’d like. However, if you focus on what buyers want, you’ll put your house at the top of their gotta-have-it-now list.

If you’re thinking about selling, we’ve got a few useful tips that will increase your home’s value fast before you take it to market.

Consult a Realtor

That might not be what you were expecting to hear, but real estate is an exquisitely local market. What sells in Florida probably won’t sell in Oregon. Contact a local realtor for some valuable advice on what buyers are looking at in your neighborhood. Take notes, and then get started.

Get Back To The Basics

It is surprising how quickly we collect objects in our home. Depending on how long you’ve lived at your current address, your house could be brimming with collectibles. If you’re planning on moving anyway, start removing as much as you can. It’s not clutter to you, but you want buyers to envision themselves making a home here, so start making space. Start with closets. Get rid of most of the clothes and other items that you’re storing in your closets. Then look at each individual room, and focus on minimizing what’s taking up space. Pictures, old furniture, anything that you can move out of the room. You’ll be surprised how quickly you will increase your home’s value just by minimizing your possessions.

Focus On Details

We can’t say it strongly enough: Clean your house thoroughly before listing it! The fastest way to increase your home’s value is to make it so clean that it doesn’t look like anyone lives there. Buyers are turned off by dirty carpet, dingy walls, and yellowed or grayed tile grout. Go the extra distance on this one, it will pay off big. Cleaning supplies don’t cost much, and even if you replace some carpet, the return will more than pay for the investment. Pay attention to little things like cabinet fronts and furnace vents. Closet doors and built-in shelving, door jambs, window sills, and ceiling fans often go unnoticed in your daily activities, but they will stick out like sore thumbs when being scrutinized by a potential buyer.

Your Kitchen Will Sell Your Home For You

Update your faucets and cabinet hardware. Scrub the sinks. Remove everything that you possibly can from your countertops, and then scrub them, too. Wash backsplashes until they shine. Replace or clean every light bulb and light cover or shade. Dust the tops of every shelf and appliance. Apply fresh paint or varnish to cabinets and apply oil for a nice finish to wooden finishes. Clean your appliances until they look new, even if they’re not staying in the home. You will increase your home’s value just by making your kitchen look like the new owner can cook a meal in it the first night they own it.

The Bottom Line

Take time to walk through your home as it is, pretending it’s the first time you’ve ever seen it. Make note of what you like and don’t like. Ask yourself if you would buy it again, based on how it looks now. Then review your notes and start improving what you can. You’d be surprised how quickly you can increase your home’s value when you make simple improvements.