Deciding to start home repairs prior to listing

Patching up any negatives in your home before selling typically pays off in the long run, in home sale price, market competitiveness, and speed to sale. Some fixes are necessary, while some are not necessary. You will for sure want to address any structural or safety concerns with your home (these would be requested to be addressed on a home inspection regardless). Some factors to consider when you are deciding to make a change or not:

  • Time of year — for example, if its the winter you likely won’t be able to fix the peeling exterior paint on your home.
  • Market temp — in the current seller’s market (Spring 2017) you can get away with less since the inventory is very low and buyers are more forgiving.
  • Competing inventory — if your home is already updated equally to homes that sold and are currently on the market you may not need to change much.

Once you complete your major repairs check out our Complete Seller’s Checklist for guidance on cleaning, prepping, and staging to get your home market ready!


Wooden Floor

  • Wood floors are the most desirable flooring style for prospective buyers. If you have them you will want to highlight them! Refinish if needed.


  • At a minimum get your carpets deep cleaned. If you have bold, bright, or outdated carpeting consider replacing with neutral colored carpeting.


  • Replace any chipped or cracked tiles. Clean and replace the grout, as needed.


Paint color

  • Keep it simple. Pick a nice neutral color. Grey with a tint of green hues are quite popular right now.


  • Remove if possible and paint neutral.


  • Paint if they look outdated.

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  • If your appliances are from this century and look in good shape then you likely okay as-is. If you have appliances from the 70’s then consider choosing a decent set of stainless steel appliances. Use your best judgement (use competitor homes on the market to determine what you will be up against)!


  • Dated cabinets can be painted and cleaned up with new hardware. You can also resurface your existing cabinets inexpensively.


  • See what the competition has. If all the houses have granite countertops then you will want to strongly consider upgrading.



  • If you have carpet in the bathroom. Remove it. If your tiling is very outdated, consider updating with newer ceramic or luxury vinyl tile (LVT).


  • New fixtures almost always pay off. If your fixtures are original to the house or older than 10-15 years consider replacing.


  • Apply the same rule as above for fixtures.

Roofing & Exterior


  • If you have an asphalt roof and its pushing 15 years, you may want to just get it replaced now, especially if you’ve had any history of roof damage.


  • Repaint if necessary.

Curb Appeal

  • Patch driveway, resurface, fix cracks.
  • Plant new flowers.
  • Replace door hardware.
  • Paint/re-stain fence.

Check out our article on Improving Curb Appeal for more ideas!