What to do when your house is dated


What to do when your house is dated
Gary Kelley, Realtor®
[email protected]

By Gary Kelley, Realtor®

You want to sell your house and you’ve been told it’s dated… What does this mean? Does it mean you were once on match.com?

Styles and fashions change all the time. Materials and finishes change. When updating your home, you can literally tear walls out to the studs and rebuild. When selling your home, we try to take a more measured approach!

While you are not selling furnishings with the home, some quick changes can make all the difference in helping buyers envision themselves in the space. This is where staging comes into play. Some quick hits you can use follow.

Removing that 400-pound television. Even when they still work those mammoth TVs quickly date a property. Often in front of these TVs are “sofas with a secret.”  I’ll let you in on a secret…they date the space. It’s the same with brown furniture. Sell, donate, or put in the garage…make these items gone.

If your house has “gleaming hardwoods,” do you keep them covered with an area rug? And did you get the area rug from your parents? Roll up the rug and let buyers see those beautiful floors.

Are your toilets and tubs blue? Avocado?  Whenever you have fixtures where the colors are no longer available it’s a good idea to replace. A replacement toilet is a couple hundred bucks.  Tubs can be reglazed rather than replaced for short dollars.

Quartz is the “in” countertop now. Laminate (aka Formica) and even Corian is viewed as dated.  We resist recommending countertop replacements because a seller rarely gets their money out of the project. There are companies who will coat a countertop with a resin finish making the counter look fabulous. This is a good option if the countertops are badly worn or damaged.

Are your light fixtures bright brass? Bright brass screams, “I was installed a couple decades ago?”  Home Depot, Wayfair and Lowes have some very affordable light fixtures. You don’t have to love them, as you are selling the home.

If you have any brown electrical outlets, suggest changing them. Switches and outlets are easy to change if you know what you are doing. White is the “in” color.

Some people change door hardware, replacing their brass handles and hinges with brush nickel – immediate upgrade.  And if you do one room a night after work, it is not horrible.

We believe one of the best overall values in updating a home is paint. And it is something many can do themselves.

Kitchen cabinets looking beat up or dated?  Don’t reface – paint them white. And when you put the hardware back on, update it.

Walls looking old, faded, beat up?  Linen white and Navajo white have given way to metropolitan, Tyler gray, pale oak. The whites have given way to greige. A quick coat of paint (starting with and including the front door) gives one of the most immediate returns on impact!  You want to select neutral colors appealing to the widest range of buyers. When in doubt, paint.

If you need advice on selling your home or buying a new one, give us a call.

Kelley is a member of the Rotary Club of Westborough and is an award-winning Realtor. He invites you to follow him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MoveWithGary/.


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