You may be planning to put your home on the market soon, or thinking about how you can increase its resale value a few years from now. What if you don’t have a bundle of money stashed away to make improvements that would boost your home’s resale value? Not to worry – you don’t have to invest a small fortune to reap the benefits should you decide to sell. Here are five low-cost projects you can handle that won’t break the bank but will make a substantial difference in the value of your home.

  1. Give the kitchen an inexpensive facelift. Potential buyers pay more attention to the kitchen and bathrooms than any other rooms in the house. Does yours look like it came straight from the 80s? If so, you can make a big difference without installing all new appliances, flooring, and cabinets. A little paint can go a long way, whether you cover the cabinets with a light or neutral color or use an epoxy paint designed for use on appliances. Update a light fixture or two, add new hardware to cabinet doors and drawers, and you’ll be amazed at the difference.
  2. Brighten up your spaces with new light fixtures and higher wattage bulbs. Dark areas aren’t appealing to most buyers, and you can give your home a more modern appeal by replacing a few light fixtures, particularly those that highlight the focal points of a room. Higher wattage bulbs not only light up your space but also work when you want to focus on key selling points. Even the little things such as replacing outlet switch plates can make a difference.
  3. Give the bathroom a mini-makeover. Spending thousands of dollars isn’t necessary. All you need to do to update the bath is replace an old vanity, paint the walls and baseboards, add some crown molding, and switch out the shower curtain and towels for a more modern look. An oversize mirror or piece of art for a wall can also make a dramatic impact.
  4. Cut the clutter. While it may sound simple, this may be the most important project of all when trying to boost the resale value of your home. Potential buyers want to be able to picture their own families in your home, which is hard to do when your family’s photos, awards, degrees, vacation souvenirs, and other personal items are on the walls and scattered around the living room or bedroom tables. Remove everything that’s personal, and take out everything that isn’t necessary, which includes items on kitchen counters, shelves, on your home office desk, in bedrooms, bathrooms — everywhere. You’ll create the illusion of more space while making it simpler for buyers to imagine themselves in that space.
  5. Don’t forget the exterior. The first thing a potential buyer will notice is the outside of your home and landscape. Do everything you can to increase curb appeal including trimming hedges, mowing, edge trimming, power washing the sidewalk, deck, or siding, cleaning up the kids’ toys, making minor repairs, even painting the front door. None of this costs much, but the impact on buyers is definitely worth the effort.

These are just a few things you can do to spruce up your home and increase its value without burning a hole in your pocket. Spending tens of thousands of dollars to ensure you get top dollar for your home isn’t necessary in most cases. Just a little care, maintenance, and attention can go a long way toward making your home attractive to potential buyers!