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What upgrades should be done to improve resale?

We bought our first home (a fixwer) last year and have realized that we will probably need to move in about 3-5 years.  We just completed the kitchen, but there are a few other areas that need work.  Its already one of the largest and most expensive homes in the area and is on a double sized lot so I don't want to over renovate.  Here are the things I'd love to change:
Master bathroom (hasn't been changed since the 70s)
Converting an empty seperate garage into an outdoor room (It overlooks a beautiful pool which we use a lot in southern california)
Converting a small seperate dining room into a 4th bedroom (we have a walkthrough library that I can use as a dining room)
Landscaping 
What would be the best renovations to help with resale?
  • September 05 2013 - Arleta
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Answers (10)

Profile picture for JoshBarnettREIB
Curb appeal 
  • September 13 2013
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My bad on the garage idea, I seemed to skip over the building as being a garage....just missed it.
I was addressing it as an outbuilding....I would never take out a garage.

Matter of fact that is a big deciding factor in our house search now, not a deal breaker but it does hold merit and we figure it in as an expense we will have to come up(after the process of buying)  if it doesn't exist now.
And the house we are looking at now has a dining room (not a purpose used much these days) we are also thinking of a extra bedroom conversion. :-)

I was picturing and outside building next to the pool area is why I was thinking and outdoor entertainment area.....sorry.
-Joseph-
  • September 13 2013
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Turning an extra room into a 4th bedroom, would be a great way to increase your value!
  • September 11 2013
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Another option to this marketing question is:
Decide how much it would cost to do the work. Then, just price it that much lower and list it as a Fixer Upper. There's a shortage of these type of listings and it will generate a lot of interest. 
You will save all the hassle and time of the remodel work.
  • September 11 2013
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Profile picture for Hurst Team
It all begins with curb appeal.  A clean yard with attractive landscpaing is a great start.  Be sure your driveway is clean and clear of clutter.  On the interior; fresh neutral-colored carpet and paint are desirable.  If you can swing it, updated counter tops and fixtures will go a long way in making the home desirable.  It is highly recommended that you remove as much clutter as you can in all the rooms and counter tops.  
  • September 11 2013
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Preparing your home for sale begins at the curb, simple things like attractive landscaping, freshly power washing the exterior and driveways of the home.  Remove wall paper, out-dated or taste specific fixtures.  New paint and updated flooring are always key items to buyers.  I would consult a local expert about the garage conversion.

Good luck with the sale of your home, I hope this helps.
  • September 11 2013
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Profile picture for ccassidyfl
Keep it clean, and simple!  And I'd truly recommend getting advice from a local Realtor, perhaps one who will sell it for you in a few years. 

You need to find out what are the highest return on your investment improvements for homes like yours in YOUR area.

So many factors play into this decision and I'd hate to see you spend money that won't increase your net return when you sell and/or won't help you sell it faster.  Eliminating the garage could also eliminate buyers who need one for their car, storage or hobbies.  This is where advice from a local real estate Pro can be very helpful.
  • September 10 2013
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Make sure to remodel in the eyes of the buyer. Do not remodel to your own liking. Keep it simple and standard to attract more buyers to your home when you sell. I would recommend keeping the garage because it is more of an asset when a property has a garage. It is better to just keep the garage the way it is, and let the buyer decide what they want to do. Remodeling the bathroom would be good, especially since it hasn't been changed since the 70's. Also, having an additional room will definitely add value to any home! Give the buyer an opportunity to visualize themselves in your home, or should I say: Their new home! Again, keep it simple and standard; nothing custom to your liking. Happy Renovations!
  • September 09 2013
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Dear  Arleta Seller,

Some of the easiest things to do, in order to prepare a home for sale, are not complicated remodels. New Carpets, Window coverings, paint and fresh vibrant landscaping and the first things to look at doing.
I would not remove a garage. I have never met a buyer yet who did not need and want a garage. As a matter of fact, the traditional two car garage is not big enough, most want three!
As far as the rest of your questions, a Realtor really needs to look at  your property and run some good statistics so that you do not over do it and end up with a lot of work that does not translate into a higher sale price.
  • September 06 2013
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That master bathroom is the biggest concern for you .
I figure that Master bedroom on a house like yours (as you mentioned ) should be up-to-date and leave prospected buyers thinking about after they leave.

I have received great feedback and a phone call just to say "thank you...your bathroom is what sold our house" from clients.

The outdoor room sounds like a fun project that you could possibly do an outdoor kitchen in...explore that area at the least.

As far as the dining room is concerned...around here they are those that like the separation but most people think that if you have an eat-in kitchen why do you need a dining room.
Don't know about out there in CA.

Good luck with your home and hope you are happy with whatever you do...may want to stay after you do all the renovations...lol.
-Joseph-
  • September 05 2013
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