Paul Liberatore

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How to boost your home’s value without breaking the bank

The real estate market is about to kick into high gear and if you're looking to list this spring, there are some simple things you can do to boost your home’s value, without breaking the bank.

Realtor Donna Leyland says the owner of a Vancouver condo that sold in just seven days did everything right, including professional staging, fresh paint, bedding and flooring.

"It's 28-years-old, but it looks like a show suite,” she said about the condo.

Home decor experts say the key to a quick sale is in the kitchen. 

"The big thing when you're moving is to make sure that your kitchen appeals to everybody," said Fiona Wilson of Home Depot.

Think neutral accents with attitude. By simply updating your hardware and faucets and an old kitchen can look new again.

"You want them to look fresh and updated. Bathrooms and kitchens are key, they need to look good because they're the most used rooms in the house," said Wilson. 

So realtors recommend you give older bathrooms a facelift with new sinks, lighting fixtures and, most importantly, the grout around the tub.

You can pay a professional to do it or you can do it yourself for under $10.

"You put a nice simple bead of caulking around. It makes it look refreshed, cared for, clean and tidy and well maintained," said Wilson. 

When it comes to real estate, a clean, fresh and neutral look sells. Experts suggest buying fresh white bedding and add a green accent colour and a fresh coat of paint. 

When you paint everything the same colour, it gives a much larger feel. And always stick to a neutral shade. Go for off-white, beige or a grey colour for a big impact at a small price.

You can paint a couple of rooms for under $200.

The key is to create a blank canvas so potential buyers can visualize their own decor. So before you list, declutter, and depersonalize. Then add some fresh flowers, set an inviting table and wait for a buyer.

Other tips to help you sell your home faster include:

  • Make it look bigger by removing some of your furniture and putting it in storage.
  • Use double beds instead of queens or kings in the bedroom.
  • Glass dining and coffee tables also make rooms feel bigger.
  • Increase the wattage of your light bulbs and add lamps to eliminate any dark spaces.
  • Never cook a meal before a showing and use an odor neutralizing spray.
  • Colour block your clothes from dark to light, to make your closets look more spacious and organized.

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