HomeGain did a survey among agents around the country as to the most affordable home-preparation projects that garnered the highest return in increased sales price on money invested.

Here are the recommended projects:

  • Light Staging: interior flowers; furniture rearrangement; artwork; stage dining room table, bathrooms and kitchen: average return on investment 455%
  • Cleaning & De-cluttering: average return on investment 400%
  • Light Landscaping and Flower Planting: average return on investment 289%
  • Flooring & Carpeting Cleaning or Repair: average return on investment 100% – 180%
  • Plumbing & Electrical: Minor Upgrades and Repairs: average return on investment 180%
  • Interior Painting: average return on investment 94%
  • Exterior Painting: average return on investment 36%

If you’re interested in their “Home Sale Maximizer Guide” you can download it at www.homesalemaximizer.com

I think they have a tendency to understate the costs, especially in a market area like ours, but I also think that the return is commensurately greater in dollars – and that the return on investment estimates are generally reasonable.

Many items that may be done to prepare your home for marketing and showing cost comparatively little, and yet may dramatically enhance market response and value. However, from basic cleaning to full staging, anything that appears likely to add more value in achieved sales price than it costs is worth consideration.

A study found that staged houses sold in half the time as unstaged homes and…on average almost 5% more than the sales price for unstaged homes.