When it comes to updating your home there are many choices to be made. Surprisingly not all updates bring a great deal of return when you sell your home. Research shows that the following updates will be most attractive to potential buyers.

 Kitchen
Appliances and cabinets are typically the most expensive items to replace in a kitchen. If you don’t have to replace them, you’ll save a ton of money. However, if your cabinets are dated and beat-up, your house might not sell if the cabinets aren’t replaced.

Kitchen remodels return nearly 100%. According to Remodeling Magazine, the high-end kitchens don’t return as much as the mid-range or minor kitchen remodels. Most buyers won’t pay extra for a built-in Sub Zero refrigerator, professional 8-burner stove, under mount sink or travertine floors. If you live in the Midwest, your return will be less than for those who live in other parts of the country.

Cabinets: Resurfacing is your least expensive option. This involves attaching a thin veneer to the surface of the cabinets and replacing the doors and hardware. If your cabinets are painted, add a fresh coat of paint and new hardware.

  • Countertops, Sinks & Faucets: Granite counters are not always necessary, but ask your agent. Simple laminates, newer faucets and sparkling sinks will also sell. Buyers don’t want to spot leaky faucets or stained sinks.

 Bathrooms
The national average of recouped cost is more than 100% for bathrooms. New floors, fixtures and lights payoff.

Flooring
Hardwood Floors: If your home has hardwood floors, that’s what buyers want, and it would pay to have the carpeting removed and the floors refinished.

Carpeting: If your sub-floor is plywood, then replace the carpeting with light tan. Neutral carpeting is your best bet for resale.

Ceramic: Replace chipped or cracked tiles. Clean or replace the grout. But don’t install ceramic (it’s too expensive) unless it’s for aesthetic reasons in an entry way.

Roof & Exterior
If your home needs a new roof, bite the bullet and do it. Even though most roofing tear-off jobs take one to two days, buyers shy away from buying a home if the roof needs to be replaced.

  • Patch cement cracks in sidewalks
  • Resurface asphalt driveways
  • Plant flowers
  • Caulk windows and doors
  • Replace doorknobs and locks
  • Fix or paint fences

Walls
Wallpaper: It’s not that all buyers hate wallpaper. They hate your wallpaper – because it’s your personal choice, not theirs. And they hate all dated wallpaper. Get rid of it. The easiest way is to steam it off is using an inexpensive wallpaper remover steamer.

Wood Paneling: Even if your wood paneling is not real wood but composite, you can paint it. Dated paneling must go. Older wood paneling such as walnut, mahogany, cedar and pine, it’s all gone out of style. Paint it a neutral and soft color after priming it.

Textured Ceilings: Older popcorn ceilings with the “sparkles” often contain asbestos and if disturbed are health hazards. Say goodbye to it. But even recently sprayed ceilings turn off buyers. It’s not expensive but it is time consuming to remove. Lay down drop cloths and scrape it off. You will need to repaint.