Home Selling Guides

Here’s a Checklist of Simple Cosmetic Fixes You Can Make Before Listing

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Anette Brown on 20 Oct 2020

You don’t always need to do a major renovation to get your home ready for market. Beyond a thorough cleaning and decluttering, here’s a checklist of cosmetic updates that can have your home looking its best without a lot of investment:

Switch up the hardware. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets can become instantly updated when you switch out their outdated hardware for something more clean and current. Select new door and drawer pulls and handles of brushed nickel or brass. Keep the lines simple and be sure to measure existing drilled holes to select something of the correct size.

Brighten things up with subway tile. Is your backsplash outdated? Too dark? Showing its age? Replace it with simple subway tile for a look that appeals to a wide range of buyers and goes well with a variety of decors. Tile installation isn’t as difficult as you might think.

Neutralize the walls. That weekend you decided to paint your bedroom walls to match your new comforter might have been a stroke of genius. But, buyers may not be quite as thrilled with a unique hue. With some prep, you can tackle the job yourself with some neutral paint—try light grey, antique white or beige to please the crowd.

Change out your ceiling fans and light fixtures. If your ceiling fan and lighting fixtures feature glossy, brass finishes, it’s time to change them out for something more contemporary. If you can’t afford to change out every outdated fixture, concentrate on the high-traffic areas livin the living room, dining room and kitchen.


Turn it on with some faucet magic. Who says bathroom fixtures have to be ho-hum? Wow your buyers with spa-like fixtures in your home’s bathrooms. You’ll be amazed at how this simple change will take this neglected room from outdated to oasis. Complete the look with some plush towels and hand soaps.

Give kitchen cabinets a new face. Sometimes just changing out kitchen hardware isn’t enough. If your cabinets have the orange-y look to them from 20 years ago, you may want to bring them into the 21st century with a fresh coat of paint. Go for something neutral, like white or light grey.

Be ready for the drive by. As more buyers opt for video tours, you can expect the number of drive-by “previews” to be higher than previous years. You don’t have to spend a lot on professional landscaping if it’s not in your budget. Spend a few hours on the weekend sprucing up your home’s curb appeal with a new mailbox and house numbers, perfectly manicured plants and a freshly washed front entranceway.

Spruce up the backyard. Outdoor entertainment spaces are more important than ever. If your backyard could use a boost, consider using DIY pavers to add to the existing patio. Change out cushions, string some festive lights and add an inexpensive dining set. Fresh, colorful potted plants add an easy pop of color.

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