Tips for painting your home pre-sale
With the current hot real estate market showing no end in sight, sellers are right to consider whether it pays to make the usual home improvements before listing.
Given the low inventory and the number of homes that are selling above their listing price -- 52% of homes nationwide, according to recent Redfin research – the chances of finding an as-is buyer are high.
However, experts agree it still pays to handle minor improvements that add to the aesthetic appeal of your home. Along with clean landscaping and decluttered interior spaces, fresh paint can all go a long way toward drawing in buyers and driving up prices in a bidding war.
Painting before selling equals low cost, big returns
Fresh paint is one of those improvements that doesn't cost much but almost always has a positive return on investment.
According to a HomeLight survey of over 900 real estate professionals, the estimated cost of painting the exterior of a home was about $2,800, but the average value it added to the selling price was about $4,230. That's a 51% ROI!
In addition to the visual appeal of a fresh coat of paint, homebuyers see it as a sign that the home is well-maintained. Paint can help protect a home's exterior from the elements, keeping moisture, mold, and mildew out of wood, siding, and other building materials.
While fresh exterior paint adds to curb appeal, don't forget your interior spaces. Remember, most of your buyers will be checking out online photos of your home. Fresh paint will not only catch their eye as an improvement they won't have to bother with for a while, but it also helps cover any unsightly holes or cracks that could cause negative attention.
A survey published in the National Association of Realtors' 2021 Profile of Home Staging found that 63% of real estate agents recommend that owners paint interior walls before listing their homes.
How to get the most bang for your buck
If you're sold on the idea of sprucing up your home before listing, but you want to lessen the impact on your wallet, your next step is to set some priorities. Here are some factors to consider when deciding what to paint:
- First impressions matter. You don't have to paint your entire home to gain the advantages of a fresh look. Try focusing on the first spaces that buyers will see when they walk up to and through the front door (either in-person or on a video tour) and then into the entryway and great room. The next priority is the main bedroom.
- Repair any damage. Chips, cracks, and peeling paint stand out to buyers (and home appraisers) as trouble signs. Take the time and effort to fix these spots before listing your home.
- Paint the trim. If an entire exterior paint job is out of your budget, consider painting the trim around doors and windows to freshen things up a bit.
- Don't forget the front door. A study by Zillow found that front doors painted black or charcoal increased the home's value by more than $6,000!
What paint colors attract homebuyers?
When it comes to choosing exterior and interior paint colors, it's essential to keep in mind that you are striving to appeal to a broad audience. As a first step, see what's trending in your neck of the woods by visiting current local home online listings.
Now is not the time to go for something unique or trendy with wall colors. For example, something like a purple wall in the dining room may be au courant one year and appear dated the next.
Instead, designers and realtors alike recommend using neutral interior paint colors. White, beige, and grey hues consistently rank among the most popular choices. These colors tend to brighten spaces and make them look larger than they are.
Neutral walls also serve as a backdrop for a wide range of interior design styles and color palettes. A HomeLight study found that 98% of top agents agreed that neutral colors are the most popular paint colors with buyers.
What about your exterior paint? Selecting an exterior paint color is a little more involved than your interior choice. You want to make sure this color fits in with your home's surroundings. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Natural light and shading can affect the way exterior paint appears.
- Your paint choice should complement the color of the roof and accents, such as shutters.
- Your paint color should not stray too far from the tones in your neighborhood.
As you may have realized by now, neutral colors are also the best choices for exterior paint. You can add interest by painting trim, shutters, railings, and doors a contrasting color.
DIY or hire a professional painter?
When it comes to sprucing up your home for sale in this hot market, it's natural to want to save wherever you can. You may be tempted to handle the painting yourself. Is DIY painting a good idea in the long run?
The answer depends on how big the job is, your skill level, and the tools and equipment you have. Generally speaking, it's best to hire a pro under the following conditions:
- You have high walls and ceilings
- Your walls are in poor condition
- You'd like a specialty finish
- You have old paint that needs to be stripped
On the other hand, if your walls are in good condition, you're seeking only a simple color change, and you will not have to worry about climbing high ladders or handling a lot of prep work, you can probably take on the job yourself.
Just be sure to invest in high-quality paint rollers and brushes for an even finish. And don't forget to paint the trim and ceiling, not just the interior walls. Many a DIY-er has been frustrated when they realize the ceiling and trim look shabby after putting a fresh coat on a wall.
Make that new paint job pop with high-quality professional photos
Now comes the time to show off your home's new paint to prospective buyers. And the best way to do that is with high-quality images taken by a professional photographer.
In a Zillow survey, nearly 80% of homebuyers said they shopped online for their new home. Of the people who bought a house in the last 12 months, almost 50% said that viewing professional photos was either "extremely important" or "very important" to their home search.
Professional photographers have the equipment, knowledge, and experience to show your home to its best advantage. High-quality images allow home buyers to zoom in on details like the color around a window or the texture of a kitchen cabinet.
In addition to your online listings, professional photos also will stand out on social media posts, brochures, flyers, signs, and ads. And professional real estate photographers will showcase your home – and its eye-catching new paint job – with expertly done video tours.
For help in finding a professional real estate photographer in your area, Snappr is your one-stop shop. And, as the world's largest network of highly skilled photographers, Snappr can help you make your appointment in just two minutes flat.
When it comes to selling your home, first impressions matter. In a hot real estate market, you have the ability to focus on what really matters to sell your home quickly and at the best possible price. With professional photos that capture the beauty of your freshly painted home, you'll be well on your way to signing that sales contract.
Contact Snappr today!