Painting your house is a daunting endeavor at the best of times. Painting a house that is on the real estate market adds a huge amount of pressure to the job. In these trying real estate market times selling your house has become more and more of a seemingly insurmountable task. Buyers are trying everything to increase their chances; putting clutter in storage, taking away personal items, replacing rugs, even “staging” the home with a company’s furniture and decorations. One thing that is often overlooked, or brushed past as too difficult, is slapping on a new coat of fresh paint. Many home sellers think repainting the house is well beyond their abilities and budget. However, following some very simple guidelines can not only make the process simpler and cheaper but will help increase your chances of success in this real estate market.
1. Buy cheap paint! Okay, don’t by a gallon from some guy on the side of the road. Really cheap paint will need so many coats it will end up costing more. However, there is no need to go top of the line either. You are painting this for someone else.
2. Paint in muted colors. Some people LOVE accent walls that are a dramatic color. Good for them. Most people walk into a house for sale and are trying to imagine themselves there. Blinding them with some blood red wall that they can’t take their eyes off of will not assist in their attempt to picture themselves there
3. Don’t sweat the small stuff: Don’t spend hours and hours making sure each edge is perfect. The point of repainting is to make it look clean and fresh. People looking at the house to gauge interest will not be looking at the base boards with a magnifying glass to make sure the paint line is straight. Focus on the huge sections of wall.
4. Focus on the living areas. Unless your bathrooms and closets look like a bomb exploded and destroyed the walls don’t waste time repainting them. People only glance in those areas but really spend their time in the living areas (family room, kitchen, etc).
5. Repaint the accent areas! This is the easiest and quickest way to add a wow factor to a paint job. Redo those window sills and baseboards. Make them shine white so they set off the rest of the new paint.
Painting is tough, hard work, and can be expensive if done right. However, when the focus is on initial appeal and quick looks the job can get a lot easier. The point of repainting before a sale is to freshen it up. Don’t slack on it and do a terrible job but don’t worry about being a perfectionist. Odds are whomever purchases the home will be repainting it to match their own style anyway.