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Three Tips to Increase Your Home’s Appraisal Value

October 5th, 2012

Three Tips to Increase Your Home’s Appraisal Value

Whether you’re selling your home, or you want to refinance, getting a good appraisal is an important step.  There are some simple and inexpensive things you can do to quickly improve the look (and worth) of your home.

Clear Out the Clutter

Peter Walsh is an expert in decluttering.  His 10 Tips to Declutter Your Home are on Oprah’s Website. The three best are:

  1. Tackle messes one room at a time.
  2. When you buy something new, practice the “in-out rule:” For every one new item, get rid of an old one.
  3. Create a vision for the room you’re cleaning.

A home that feels open and airy will appraise better then one that feels closed, dark and cluttered.

Paint Inside and Out

A fresh coat of paint makes the room look completely remodeled.  You can change the look of a room dramatically by creating walls and ceilings of different colors.  You can make a room seem larger by painting one wall a darker color and the rest of the walls a lighter one.

The kitchen and the bath are the two areas that can really “sell” a house, so paint them first. Take down all pictures and hanging decor on the walls, spackle the nail holes and paint. Rehang only one or two items at most before the appraisal.  Too much clutter can negatively affect the appraisal.

The outside may be more expensive to paint, but it will pay off with a better appraisal if the house looks newer.

If you’re looking at selling, it’s best to choose neutral or beige colors.  While it may seem boring, it sells better.  If you’re updating for an appraisal, be aware that anything too far out of the ordinary may decrease the appraisal due to the perception that it will make the home more difficult to sell should the need arise.

Add Flowering Plants Outside

Bright spots of color make the home look carefully landscaped.  Having flowers line the driveway and the walkway will draw the eyes naturally to the house improving the first impression of the house.  You may hear a Realtor refer to this as “curb appeal.”  People want to stop and look at a pretty house, and having brightly colored flowers increases the prettiness of your home.


There are many more things you can do.  These three will have immediate impact on the perceived value of the home.  We’ll discuss additional techniques in future posts.  Meanwhile, what’s your favorite tip for improving the appraisal value?

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