Tracy Ellis

Real Estate Magazine

Edition 8 Features

You Have Questions? We Have Answers!

Q: I have dated brass fixtures throughout my home. Do I need to switch them out when I put my house on the market?
A: Brass fixtures were the most common type of lighting and plumbing fixture in the 1980’s and 1990’s.  While metallic and brass are back in style, the current patina and lines of the fixtures is completely different.  Updating is advised, but not necessary before putting your house on the market.

Q: What should I do about my dated oak cabinets?
A: White is the cabinet of choice in today’s real estate market.  Painting cabinetry is a specialty that is not offered by most traditional painting companies.  The best cabinet painters use a marine-type paint that involves a several step process.  This process will diminish any significant graining from showing through.  Off white and pale gray are other current alternatives for painted cabinets.  Good cabinet refinishing isn’t inexpensive.  However, the majority of sellers recoup their investment and then some!

Q: There is hardwood underneath my carpet. Should I remove the carpet and expose the hardwood?
A: Today’s buyers prefer hardwood in the key living areas for both health-related reasons, such as allergies, and for its aesthetics.  Hardwood definitely adds value to the property.  It is in the seller’s best interest to expose and refinish existing hardwood.  If a seller’s existing carpeting is worn and needs to be replaced, it is recommended that hardwood or quality laminate serve as the replacement over new carpet.

Q: I have carpet in my bathrooms. Should I replace it with tile or vinyl?
A: You will definitely want to replace any carpet in bathrooms. Buyers are turned off by carpet in “wet areas”.  When choosing vinyl, be sure to select one that looks like tile.  There are also beautiful tiles that resemble hardwood. These are also a very popular option in both kitchens and baths.  When selecting flooring, keep in mind that it’s very important to create as few flooring breaks as possible to showcase the flow of the home.

Q: My countertops are Formica and are in pretty good condition, but I’ve heard that buyers want granite. Do I need to invest in granite to get my home sold?
A: In most homes priced over $200,000, a buyer expects to see a solid surface countertop like granite, Silestone, or marble.  However, quartz is currently on the rise to becoming the countertop of choice.  As with cabinetry, countertops are also going lighter. For resale, steer clear of concrete, ice stone, or other trendy types of surfaces.  There are also specialized artists who can actually paint existing laminate surface to look like marble or stone.

Q: I’ve heard that buyers don’t want wallpaper in a new home. My wallpaper cost $150 a roll and was selected by an interior designer. It’s okay to leave it up, right?
A: Sorry, but no! In 99% of cases, existing wallpaper needs to be removed prior to listing your home.  One of the few instances where we urge the seller to leave the wall paper is in a mid-century home that features grass cloth wallpaper.  In period homes of this nature, buyers want to see finishes as close to the original as possible.

Q: I have beautiful custom window treatments in my home that match my furnishings and wall paper. Should I leave them or take them to my new home?
A: Please take them to your new home! Generally, the staging professional will instruct the seller to remove most of the draperies throughout the home.  Today’s buyers want a light, bright environment.  If your shutters and/or blinds are in good condition, leave them up, especially if you will be living in the home while it’s on the market.

Q: We just painted our home the 2015 color of the year, Marsala, and had custom murals painted in the children’s bedrooms. This will definitely add value when selling our home, right?
A: Unfortunately, that’s another no!  Buyers want bright, neutral paint and white trim.  Deep colors (like Marsala), browns, dark greens, and other dark colors are not considered inviting and can make the rooms appear smaller and darker.  Sherwin Williams Alabaster is a beautiful shade of white that works with most other finishes.  Hiring a staging professional to make paint color selections is money well spent.

Q: My Grandmother’s antique mirror is in our powder room and looks gorgeous. Can I take it with me when the house sells?
A: Prior to listing your home, plan to remove any mirrors, fixtures, or other attached items that you plan to take with you.  Some sellers exclude these items on the listing agreement, but if you love your items, pack them up prior to listing and replace them with something simple and neutral.

Q: I’m busy! I don’t have time to handle everything that needs to be done to get my house ready to sell. What resources are available to help me through the process?
A: A home staging professional can handle the entire process.  Whether you need a painter, plumber, flooring specialist, or help with packing, storage, or moving INhance IT! will take care of the details.