Unless you have extreme buyer's remorse, the average time spent living in a single-family house is five years. This recommendation has come to be known as the Five Year Rule, according to Moneyning. Of course, there are some variations to this loose rule - the house's location and starting price all factor in to a family's final decision to move.
We all love upgrading. Every fall, new flagship smartphones are released with better peripherals. New car models are released yearly and if you like building computers, good luck trying to always have the latest graphics card.
The first house homeowners purchase will differ from the property they buy later in life. Buying and selling occurs after families grow and parents get new jobs with higher pay. However, if you're looking to sell, don't think you can't increase the value of your property, even if you've been living there for a few years. There are numerous repairs and fixes you can complete on a budget that will increase your home's selling price.
Clean, and clean some more
According to Jeffrey Gould of Kings Realty & Property Management, a good house cleaning costs an average of $75 and you can see a return on investment of 1,577 percent - that is not a typo. Cleaning can brighten up hardwood floors or make carpet look new. Potential homebuyers will be able to see all the perks of your house that you may have forgotten about as items and junk built up over the years.
Part of this cleaning process also means you have to brush up on your organizational skills. Gather any loose documents you deem worth saving and file them away. This also applies for furniture, as you may decide a sofa or desk is no longer needed because it makes a room look cramped. Instead of leaving everything as is, you should consider renting a storage unit and moving items there. The cost may be worth it in the end.
Cut, plant and trim
Hopefully you haven't neglected your front lawn and backyard. Even if you regularly maintain the landscapes, making everything greener and prettier is another worthy investment. The average cost of landscaping, according to Kings Realty, is $150. Home services company Red Beacon said the average grass cut is $57, but this number may fluctuate depending on the type of professional service you use and how large your yards are. You can always complete this task on your own, but a professional service may help make everything look even better.
Cutting and trimming the grass is only one step. Next, you'll want to fix up any gardens and remove weeds. Head out to the nearest flower shop and purchase colorful, annual flowers. If you plan well enough, you can see a 736 percent return on investment, according to Gould.
Most important fixes
Having a roof on top of a home is nice. However, the property is almost worthless if there are issues with the electricity and plumbing. In the age of connectivity, electricity is relied upon more than ever. Before you list your house, fix up any lingering issues or think about upgrading to bring your home into the 21st century.
While these steps can certainly be completed by yourself, you shouldn't hesitate to hire professional services. You may want to consider replacing the wiring to ensure smart home connectivity. Plumbing can even be classified under the smart home category, according to Digital Trends. These upgrades may go a long way toward showing buyers that aspects of the house can all be controlled from a connected device.
However, you shouldn't feel pressured to turn your house into a smartphone. Simply replacing light bulbs and outlets will make the home more desirable, as lighting can help brighten up rooms. Assuming you spend about $75 on electrical and plumbing, Kings Realty said you may see a 1,577 percent return on investment.
Remember that if you choose to do extensive changes to the property's electricity and plumbing, you'll need to have a home inspection service come out and ensure the changes meet various requirements that vary by location.
Repairs and paint
Any holes, dents or cracks inside and should be repaired before any property showing, for obvious reasons. Now is the time to paint the rooms, as the colors you may have used may not go well with homebuyers. Kings Realty recommended interior rooms be painted with neutral colors.
Maintenance on the outside may be somewhat more time consuming, as you may have to pressure wash some areas. Keep in mind that you'll see a higher return on investment when painting the inside than you will for the outside.
It may sound counter-intuitive to spend money on a property you're looking to sell. It is this mindset that may cost you money in the selling process. Repairs, painting and general cleaning can change a house's entire personality and are worth the small investment.