With this particular First Hill listing, we made $8,000 worth of upgrades to it before putting it on the market. When we first see a home and are considering what needs to be updated, our main guiding principle is a simple one: We want to LIKE the home. What would we change if we were going to live in it? What will potential buyers say when they walk into it?
Before we did any work in this unit, it looked old and outdated. The walls and ceilings were painted a yellow color that made the whole place feel dark like a cave, it had cheap doors and trim, and yellow laminated wood.
To spruce it up, we made the following updates:
- We painted all of the walls a flat white.
- We painted the trim and doors white.
- We changed the carpet.
- We updated the bathroom mirror and bathroom lights.
- We changed all of the light fixtures in the home.
The result was a unit that looked completely contemporary, and it really stood out in a building that is filled with units that look older. Especially if buyers are coming from a newer building, this place isn’t going to be appealing if it looks older than the place they’re coming from. Updating a unit also gives you the opportunity to highlight the longevity of a building. If a real estate agent hadn’t visited the building in a while, they might have the idea that it’s an older, outdated building that won’t appeal to their clients who are looking for something newer and modern. Showing the potential that a unit has can help agents see a building in a new light—and this is especially important since agents really help people ultimately choose what listing to make an offer on.
A week or two before we came online with our listing, a listing in the same building (the same unit, just 2 floors down) sold for $330,000. We priced our listing at $340,000, which was reasonable and based on the sold price of the other unit.
Our unit sold for $425,000—that’s 125% of the list price!
This particular unit also has the highest price per square foot in the entire building now.
Have you been thinking about listing your home in the Seattle area?
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