The look and feel of your home has a significant impact on how well it sells. Old styles, lack of lighting, and small, unorganized spaces are all turn-offs for potential buyers. Before selling, focus on making updates based on the newest trends of the year. These updates will give you the most bang for your buck, impress potential buyers, and add value to your home.
We’ve broken down four popular interior design trends of 2017, including expert opinions and cost analysis. These details will help you decide what to focus on before selling your home this year.
Note that all cost breakdowns come from the 2015 Home Remodeling Impact Report, created by the National Association of REALTORS Research Department.
The trend: "Investing in the closets will always pay off. Any opportunity to create more storage within your current space will add value." – Home Finder
Everyone wants more space, especially when it doesn’t require a zoning permit or major construction. While only 4 percent of realtors suggest that sellers re-do their closet before selling, according to the impact report, it’s an easy way to please the buyer without spending a lot of money.
When planning, look for closet systems that can be customized after the buyer moves in. Features like moveable shelves and coat racks allow the potential buyer to see how they can make the space their own.
· Estimated cost: $3,500
· Estimated cost recovery: $2,000
· Percent value recovered: 57 percent
Bathroom: Lighting to Storage
Expert opinion: Bathrooms are finally getting the attention they deserve. Clients are tired of cramming into cookie cutter bathrooms; they’re looking for an oasis, a place to get away and relax for a moment." - Paul Smith, realtor for Smith Mountain Homes
Renovating your bathroom is a huge feat, and one that will pay in spades when finished. Almost half of consumers, 49 percent, suggest their reason for redoing the bathroom is to upgrade worn-out surfaces, finishes and materials, according to the remodeling impact report.
If you aren’t financially or mentally prepared for a complete renovation, focus on the features that are on-trend right now. This includes updated lighting, modern counter surfaces and an elegant tub, which is the center of the "oasis." Lighting is especially popular right now as well:
"Lighting is hot these days. People are looking for the right lighting to capture not just the latest trends, but to act as the final ‘jewelry’ when bringing a space together," explains Smith.
· Estimated cost: $26,000
· Estimated cost recovery: $15,000
· Percent value recovered: 58 percent
Kitchen: Tuxedo Style
Expert Opinion: "Elegant, simple and balanced, tuxedo kitchens offer homeowners a classic look with striking, contemporary contrast. The classic combo also compliments another rising trend in kitchen and bath—mixed metals. From lighting to plumbing to hardware, designers and homeowners alike are experimenting with finish combinations such as the popular matte black and brass." – Carpet One Floor and Home
The kitchen is one of the most popular places in the home, and every year, there’s a different interior design trend dictating upgrades and remodels. This year, it’s all about contrasting dark with white—think: Black stainless steel appliances with white and gray subway tiling.
While a kitchen upgrade can still be pricey, you’ll recoup 67 percent, making it a worthy pre-sale project. Focus on the small touches that make a big difference in color and style contrast. Haskell Interiors suggests a few 2017 kitchen trends to focus on, including graphic tiling, docking/charging stations and induction tops.
· Estimated cost: $30,000
· Estimated cost recovery: $20,000
· Percent value recovered: 67 percent
Hardwood Floor Refinish
Expert opinion: "Whether it’s new hardwood or refinishing existing hardwood floors, it’s all about wood. Tons of customers are ripping up their carpet and refinishing the wood floors underneath. Almost everyone seems to want hardwood." – Debbie Gartner, owner of The Flooring Girl
Hardwood floors drastically enhance the look of your home, adding a rich feel that’s hard to capture with carpet. If you already have hardwood floor, don’t replace it. Refinish it for that same "new" look and feel, for a lot less money (think: $3K less!). Not to mention, the estimated recovered value is 100 percent.
· Estimated cost: $2,500
· Estimated cost recovery: $2,500
· Percent value recovered: 100 percent
When your upgrades are done, and you’re ready to work with a realtor, approach them with the current value of your home (use this Home Value Estimator tool to get that number), along with all the updates you’ve made. This information will help them prepare you for selling and get an up-to-date estimate based on the changes you’ve made.
BIO: Jessica Thiefels has been writing and editing for more than 10 years and is now a professional freelancer and consultant. She's worked with a variety of real estate clients, and has written for Forbes, Inman, House Hunt Network, Homes.com and more. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07.