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Amber van den Broek's is an award winning REALTOR ® that has experience and knowledge that will help you maximize your return on investment, putting your dollars where it counts.
THE TO-DO LIST - YOUR ONE CHANCE AT A FIRST IMPRESSION
Letting Go Of Clutter
When prospective buyers walk through your home, they tend to imagine it as if it were their own. You can help them envision their dream space by presenting a clean, clutter-free environment. If you have a smartphone there are a number of apps that will help in organizing and motivating you to get things done! Org Junkie is one that Amber uses all the time.
Bring a friend, a neighbour, or home stager to help point out overlooked problem areas of clutter. When you live in a space, you get used to a space. You don’t see what others see. Trust their advice and make a to-do list. Don't ever be offended .. we're here to help!
Remove Personal Items
Put away family photos, souvenirs, knick-knacks and personal items. These items are special to you, but the prospective buyer wants to envision their own personal items in your space. So, help them out and remove any reminders that it's someone else's home.
Clean, Clear Surfaces
Clear off counters, especially in kitchens and bathrooms, storing away small appliances and miscellaneous personal items. Scrub down the surfaces and perhaps even put out a bouquet of flowers.
Create Ease of Movement
Remove and store extra furniture to create open areas that promote easy foot traffic through your home. A home stager suggests 2- 3 feet of walkable space between most areas in the home.
Show Off Storage Space
Clear out closets, basements and garages as prospective buyers are always on the lookout for ample storage space. Now is a good time to box up unworn clothes, toys and personal items for storage or charity. Amber has many suggestions of great places that need donations, just ask!
Quick Fixes And TLC
Potential buyers will be looking for visual clues that your home is well cared for. How much work a house seems to require will impact the offering prices you receive, so it’s worthwhile to ensure that everything is in good working order.
Here's A Quick Checklist...
Ensure all plumbing fixtures are clean and in good working order. Outfit leaky faucets with new washers and clean any visible stains on porcelain fixtures. Replace old, worn shower curtains and bath mats.
Doors and Windows
Spray WD40 on all hinges so everything operates smoothly. Have windows cleaned inside and out. Potential buyers will be estimating their energy costs, so fix drafts by re-caulking windows and replace exterior doors if necessary.
Walls and Floors
A fresh coat of paint instantly transforms a space, helping it to look neat, clean, and up-to-date. Always fix obvious wall imperfections like cracks and nail holes, before painting. Steam clean carpets and runners, and repair any chipped or loose floor tiles.
Be mindful of the odours left behind by pets and smokers and consider using an environmentally friendly room fragrance to neutralize unpleasant scents. Replace light bulbs and add light fixtures in dark hallways, including basements, garages and closets.
Curb Appeal – Drive By Success!
First impressions can be everything. Many people simply drive by a listing and make a decision based on your home’s curb appeal. So, don’t forget the importance of creating a well-manicured entryway – to entice potential buyers. Maintaining a neat and attractive exterior to your home will show buyers that you take pride on your property.
Here Are A Few More Tips...
IT ALL STARTS AT THE CURB Everyone knows the value of a first impression. But RE/MAX has learned that landscaping the front and backyard of your home will give you a 7% better return on your renovating dollar over the average return on other popular renos you might consider.
Increasing your curb appeal can be as simple as adding containers of brightly coloured flowers. Another idea would be to add a low maintenance garden for blocks of colour and texture. Also, consider a simple water fixture in the back yard to add ambiance.
Consider planting a few bushes and colourful mature flowers to create an eye catching display. Ensure that your lawn is well manicured: mowed, watered and void of brown spots.
Look critically at your front entrance: does the door or the porch railing cry out for a fresh coat of paint? Polish the door handle and invest in a new welcome mat.
If it’s spring or summer, plant colourful containers to flank your entrance. If it’s autumn, rake leaves. During winter, clear the snow and ice from your walkway. Whatever the season, look closely to determine if any repairs are needed. All loose cement or rotting wood should be replaced.
THE KITCHEN IS THE HUB
Ever wonder why "kitchen parties" naturally occur every time you have guests?
Well, it's because the kitchen is the hub of every home. It's where we get nourishment, refreshment, gather and regroup after a busy day. It is a room with real value for every family. At RE/MAX we've learned that kitchen upgrades can really deliver, with a 44% higher return on investment over the average return on other popular renos you might consider.
Whether you're working with a contemporary kitchen or more of a country feel, stainless steel appliances continue to hold a lot of interest. In cabinetry, look at fine-grained maple, stained or natural, over the traditional heavy oak look of the past. Laminates and marble are great choices for countertops, but granite continues to be the most popular surface of all. Check out the latest fixtures in today's new, brushed nickel finishes.
REKINDLE YOUR PASSION FOR LIVING
Nothing beats the feeling of curling up around a fire on a cold winter's night. Not to mention the comforting feeling of hearth and home that a fireplace adds to a room.
The RE/MAX Return on Reno Index will tell you that installing or upgrading the fireplace in your home will generate 11% greater return on investment than the average return on other popular renos you might consider.
Gas fireplaces have made huge advances in popularity thanks to recent increases in efficiency as well as advances in design. A gas fireplace delivers the best of both worlds - all the comfort without the mess and maintenance.
DISAPPEAR IN YOUR PERSONAL SPA
Today's stress-filled world leaves us all crying out for rest and relaxation. RE/MAX knows that making your bathroom the best it can be will generate a 56% better return on investment than the average renovation.
The goal should be to create a spa-like environment in your bathroom by installing a soaker tub with relaxing jets, or perhaps a new steam shower stall.
GREAT IDEAS UNDERFOOT
Great looking floors are a strong feature of any home. It often makes all the difference. With RE/MAX, we'll show you how this upgrade can generate a 22% better return on investment than the average.
Start by ripping out that dated wall-to-wall carpet. Then, sand your existing floors down and refinish them, or choose one of the many easy-to-install and affordable laminates now available. A darker stain gives an elegant, yet up to date look. Use area rugs to accent and ground the space.