Since we're planning on selling our house sometime within the next 3 years, we've really started to think about how to enhance resale value without sacrificing old house character. It's something of a tightrope walk. We had a realtor out to the house last week, sho told us that if we redo the bathroom and spruce up the kitchen, we should be able to sell at about $10K over what we paid. Given today's market conditions, I'm not too unhappy with that assessment. But because he really didn't spend any time looking at the house and its improvements, and didn't seem interested in hearing about any lot or outbuilding features, we've decided to ask for a second opinion. Seriously, that particular realtor spent about 7 minutes in the house. I understand that I just asked for a market analysis, but if you want us as your clients, spend some time with us!
We have another realtor coming out this afternoon, and another tomorrow. I guess we're interviewing, LOL. I'm looking for someone who is willing to sit down with us and spend some time talking about how to sell our house. I think this time I'm going to frame the essential question a little differently: If we only have $5000 to put into this house, how can we best spend it to enhance resale value? I'll post their responses and my impressions on Friday.
Talking to the first realtor made me realize that we are in danger of over-improving for our neighborhood. The houses immediately around ours are all nice and well-kept. The area to the north and south is nice as well. But the area to the east and west, the homes are a little junky. It's sort of up-and-coming; as new folks move in, they are fixing up the houses, but there are definitely some hold-outs. Nothing too awful, as obviously we moved here, but it's definitely not a suburban utopia.
We really don't want to put too much more money into the house, but we need to redo the bathroom, spruce up the kitchen, and get rid of the ceiling tiles and paneling in the dining room. I'm not sure we can do all that for $5K or less...