By Michelle Gillespie, Realtor, Prudential Prime Properties
With winter fast approaching the fireplace takes on greater importance in the sale of a home. The warm glow of a fire on a cold winter night can be magical.? Many people love the ambiance a blaze provides, while others rely on their fireplaces to keep them warm and cozy during freezing temperatures.
The National Association of REALTORS? recently conducted a survey that found nearly two-thirds of homebuyers had a fireplace on their wish list. The fireplace has become a coveted amenity and homes boasting this feature see its benefits during resale. Your fireplace is a focal point when people come to see your home and should complement the rest of your home.
That's why it's important to make sure that the look of your fireplace has been updated and is working properly. An older looking fireplace that looks like an eye-sore can be easily updated.
You can do a lot to enhance a fireplace before selling your home. Take a look at the rest of the room and see what statement you want to make with the fireplace.? For example, with an older fireplace with old bricks, you may consider re-stoning. With other fireplaces it could be as simple as changing mantels, adding a fancier screen or placing a beautiful piece of art above it.
Transformation materials that are inexpensive and easy to work with are tile, manufactured stone, granite, marble and wood. Sometimes even painting over old, ugly brick will make a huge improvement.
A masonry fireplace can really set a home apart from the rest and significantly improve resale value. Adding a mantel also helps. An engaging fireplace and mantel can provide grandeur for an otherwise ho-hum room.
Keeping the mantel clean and uncluttered is also a must.? You want the fireplace to look inviting but not cluttered. So keep the mantel clear of all photos and knickknacks.? It's fine to decorate with accessories, but they shouldn's distract from the fireplace itself.
If you want to add a fireplace to improve your home's resale value, consider an electric fireplace as it's often the least expensive option, reasonably easy to install and more advanced than earlier models. Technology makes them more beautiful than ever, and many can be operated by remote control. Users can turn on both the flame and heat, or just one. Another benefit is that they can be operated year-round in any climate and are easy to clean and maintain.
Gas fireplaces are more common today and easy to use, plus they can be installed just about anywhere. There is no need for a chimney, wood or even matches with this type of fireplace and there is no mess to clean up either. Ceramic log kits are efficient and look like the real deal, without ashes to clean up.
Finally, regardless of the season, a fireplace should be kept clean and in working order.? You want your buyer to go home feeling really great about that room and knowing they can move in and sit in front of that wonderful fireplace.? There are few things as warm and inviting as a burning fire on a wintry day.
If you are thinking of selling your home, and would like to discuss the best approach for a positive outcome, call me, Michelle Gillespie at 508-934-9818, or e-mail [email protected]. Visit my website at www.michellegillespie.com for more information.