Home Improvement

The Most Important Rooms to Renovate Before Selling Your Home

While renovating your home before you sell it is always a good idea, there are three areas on which you should concentrate your efforts.

If you’re looking to sell your house, you may be wondering what upgrades and renovations you should perform before listing it, especially if this is your first time selling.

It’s tempting to believe that adding luxuries, like sunrooms and pools, will help, but the truth is far different. There are specific areas of your house on which you should focus to get the most out of your home sale.

The Three Rooms You Should Renovate

What rooms should you concentrate on? If you can only renovate a few areas of your house, these three are the ones to do.

All Bathrooms

Bathrooms are one of the top selling points of houses, so if yours are outdated, you should consider upgrading them. New fixtures like toilets, sinks and vanities, cabinets, and remodeled showers, can do wonders for your home value.

However, not everyone can afford to renovate all their bathrooms this way. If this is you, don’t fret. There are budget-friendly ways to spruce up your bathrooms without spending a fortune:

  • Re-grout all tiling
  • Remove old caulk and re-caulk the toilet, shower, tub, and other caulked areas
  • Replace old, dingy toilets
  • Replace mirrors, medicine cabinets, towel bars, and lighting fixtures

If your budget isn’t as tight, you can also switch a plastic tub out for an enameled tub, or replace it entirely with a tiled shower. 

Small improvements in bathrooms can give you a 102% return on the cost of the upgrades.

The Kitchen

Your kitchen is one of the primary focal points in your home and giving it fresh, modern looks and functions can go a long way towards improving your home’s value. 

Kitchen renovations are expensive. If you want to go all out, you can strip your kitchen down to its studs and replace the drywall, install mold-resistant green boards behind the sink and dishwasher, install all-new cabinets, countertops, and appliances, and put in brand-new flooring. 

However, aside from the sheer expense, that’s a lot of work if you’re going to sell your home. Here’s how to renovate your kitchen in a way that will add real value to your home without tearing it out entirely:

  • Paint or reface your existing cabinets
  • Update cabinet hardware, including hinges
  • Put in new appliances
  • Install new countertops
  • Repaint walls

Main Bedroom

When it comes to renovating rooms, your third priority should be the main bedroom. Many people love to customize their bedrooms according to their personal tastes, but prospective buyers want to see a bedroom in which they can put themselves. 

This particular renovation may well be the easiest and least expensive one you do, so you’ll get the most bang for your buck. You should concentrate on the following things:

  • Remove wallpaper and add a fresh coat of paint
  • Upgrade lighting fixtures
  • Put in new window treatments
  • Replace old flooring, especially carpeting
  • Repaint or replace doors
  • Consider replacing molding

Things to Avoid

One of the reasons things like putting in pools isn’t really good for home sales is that they’re expensive, plus whether prospective buyers want one depends on the season and where you live. 

For instance, pools are a far more attractive feature in southern Arizona than they are in northern Illinois. 

Other things to avoid include:

  • Major additions
  • Fancy new flooring throughout
  • Wallpaper
  • Garage conversions
  • Big-ticket upgrades (like a new driveway) unless it’s necessary
  • Expensive curb appeal upgrades
  • Outdoing your neighbors

These things can cost you unnecessary dollars that you’re unlikely to recoup when you sell your house. They can also slow down the sale by making interested buyers harder to find.

Final Thoughts

While renovating your home before you sell it is always a good idea, there are three areas on which you should concentrate your efforts. When you update or upgrade these rooms, you’ll add the most value possible to your home, plus you’ll get an excellent return on the investment you make on those improvements.


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