The kitchen is the heart of the home and where you’ll get the best value if you’re doing renovations before a sale.
It’s also important to remember the low-hanging fruit that is key to making a killer first impression, things like an attractive front door, sleek letterbox and a well-kept front garden.
These are just some of the tips from National Property Buyers director Antony Bucello when it comes to the smartest areas of your home to upgrade before putting it on the market.
Bucello said before jumping into a renovation to sell you must determine whether it’s worth your time and money.
“You have got to do a little bit of background work to see what renovated versions of properties like yours are actually going for, so you can then determine what is worth spending (on) and what’s not worth spending (on),” he said.
“It’s always going to depend on the size of the property because $10,000 on an apartment is going to go a lot further than $10,000 on a house.”
Bucello said the first decision to make is whether you are upgrading to add serious value or simply attending to the basics to get buyers through the front door.
He said in a scenario where you haven’t maintained your property to a good standard, it’s worth focusing on inexpensive improvements to achieve a sale.
“If it’s too far gone it might not attract anyone, so quite often that can be eradicated simply with some cosmetic updates like painting, floors or carpets and window furnishings,” he said.
“If it’s presentable people will think, ‘Oh, we can work with this’, and then they will renovate it to how they want to renovate it.”
Renovating to add value is obviously pricier and the two most expensive rooms to upgrade are the kitchen and the bathroom.
“The kitchen is the engine of the house and that quite often, depending on what you spend, can return you significantly more than what you actually fork out.”
Best value home renovations to sell your home
Scenario: You have $10,000
Bucello said if you have a house, $10,000 will probably cover an interior paint job, but not much else.
“Ten (thousand dollars) is not a lot these days to do a little bit of work to a house, unless you do a lot of stuff yourself, obviously, because labour is the killer,” he said.
If you’re doing up an apartment, $10,000 will probably get your interiors professionally painted, plus cover the cost of new carpet and possibly fresh window furnishings.
Scenario: You have $20,000
At this point, you have room to make some extra improvements and Bucello said upgrading your kitchen benchtops is a smart move. If you’re in an apartment, you could also update your kitchen cupboards.
Scenario: You have $50,000
Once you’ve completed basic cosmetic improvements and upgraded your kitchen benchtop, with $50,000 you could consider freshening up the splashback, cupboards and buying new appliances like an oven and dishwasher.
Bucello said if you still have room in your budget after that, you might want to add a new vanity for the bathroom or upgrade your storage.
No matter how much you spend upgrading the interior, you should also ensure the garden is well maintained, the gutters are cleared, and the driveway is cleaned with a high-pressure hose.
“When people see things growing out of gutters, it’s not a good look,” Bucello said.