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What buyers want in a new home

Updated kitchens and baths help sell houses. Buyers are more likely to pay top dollar for a tastefully updated property than tackle the jobs themselves. Sellers can expect to leave big money on the table if they burden buyers with the updating tasks.

While improving the kitchen, make room for a space to dine, since eat-in kitchens sell. Updated flooring will grab the eye of potential sellers immediately – as will freshly painted walls – if they are appealing. Adding flooring or paints that are bold colors or that change in every room will defeat your purpose. A house that feels like a patchwork quilt does not flow and is less attractive to buyers. When updating your home, select quality flooring within your budget. Return on investment is vital, but cheap materials and shoddy workmanship will backfire.

Storage sells

A great pantry, ample cabinet and closet space including a linen closet, and garage storage entice buyers. No one ever says their house has too much storage. One prominent reason why people move is for extra space, including storage.

Open floor plan

Buyers look for an open floor plan, yet the entire main floor does not need to be open. Having some open space for communication and sight lines between living spaces helps. What young buyers may not realize is when their toddlers become teens, parents may want a space other than their bedroom to retreat to.

Laundry room

As mundane as it may seem, a laundry room is a big seller. Having any type of inside laundry space is a benefit. It will probably be a deal breaker if buyers need to exit the house to another building, like an unattached garage, or walk through a garage to access a laundry space. Laundry in the garage that backs up to the kitchen, for example, may still hinder a sale depending on the neighborhood and price of the property.

Energy efficient appliances and fixtures, updated lighting inside and out, a home office, outdoor living and low maintenance features also sell. You may not be able or need to give buyers everything they want. Yet, knowing their priorities helps guide preparation for a sale.