On The Home Seller’s Radar, Part 1: Kitchen and Bathrooms

Posted by: Jessica Gopalakrishnan on December 21st, 2007

Part 1 – HomeGain’s Fall 2007 Home Sale Maximizer™ Survey

What are Realtors® advising homeowners do when it comes time to sell their home?

Turns out it’s what every home seller wants to hear. First, it is not going to cost a lot to see a high ROI. Secondly, it’s not going to be extremely time consuming or challenging.

In HomeGain’s Fall 2007 Home Sale Maximizer™ Survey that included over 2,000 real estate agents across the U.S. the results were just that. The goal of the survey was to find out what real estate agents recommend to homeowners to get their home into home selling condition and maximize their return on investment (at a minimal cost).

By the way, Home Sale Maximizer is a free, online home improvement tool for home sellers. As a Realtor®, it’s a great tool to give to your clients to help them BEFORE the home sale process started.

I’m going to list the results for the top six to 10 most recommended do-it-yourself home improvements in this part 1 real estate blog post, and then reveal the top four in Part 2.

• Repair electrical or plumbing problems
• Paint interior walls
• Replace or shampoo carpeting
• Repair damaged flooring
• Update kitchen and bathrooms
• Paint exterior walls

According to real estate agents in the West, South and Mid-West, repairing electrical or plumbing problems ranked as the fifth most important home improvement. At a low cost of $450-$650, agents would expect an increase of $1,200-1,600 to the home’s value.

If my math is correct, that could be worth more than twice what you put in!

Coming in at sixth place in the West is updating kitchens and bathrooms. Nationwide numbers show that 87% of agents recommend this to homeowners. The most expensive of the top 10 on this list, agents expect to still see at least double the return. However, a more involved project, it actually has the lowest return compared to the other easier (and quicker) things that can be done.

Must be a West coast thing.

Ninety-seven percent of agents nationwide recommend painting the interior walls. This home improvement ranked seventh in the East and Mid-West regions. Painting is reported at costing an average of $750 and the ROI can be up to 150%, possibly increasing a home’s value as high as $2,150.

Homeowners can see almost twice the times (154% ROI) times the value for ROI by replacing or shampooing carpeting. Average costs nationwide were reported as $550-$800. Shampooing is the lower end cost, and, actually, at this time, I’ll mention that the disclaimer in this survey.

Disclaimer: It all really depends on the actual condition of your home area. If it can be fixed, great. If it simply cannot be fixed, or shampooed in this case, replacing the carpet is probably the better solution.

Think about it in terms of if you were the individual looking to buy your home! If you don’t think you can be objective enough because you live with it and see it every day, ask a friend or neighbor for advice.

Painting exterior walls ranked fifth in the East and sixth in the South, costing in the range of $650-$950 and potentially getting returns as high as $2205. Still, 88% of real estate agents nationwide recommend this to their clients. This home improvement ranked in last place (tenth) in the West and Mid-West.

Repairing damaged flooring had the highest return on investment in the East. For as low as $600, a homeowner could see an increase in the home’s value as high as $2,000 or more by fixing any damaged parts of floors.

Read Part 2 the TOP FOUR most recommended and highest return on investment do-it-yourself home improvements!

For questions about any of this data, please feel free to contact me at blog@homegain.com.



6 Comments on “On The Home Seller’s Radar, Part 1: Kitchen and Bathrooms”


I just read ServiceMagic.com’s “january’s top 10
home projects”:
1. Bathroom Remodel
2. Interior Painting
3. Cabinets & Countertops
4. Kitchen Remodel
5. Flooring & Carpet
6. Roofing & Gutters
7. Maid Service
8. New Doors
9. Handyman Services
10. New Windows


Thanks for information.
many interesting things

house painters

Great Job
interesting topic , I would like to read more on this topic and house painting .

Holly White

Kitchen and Baths seem to be the most overlooked part of preparing a home for sale, but the most important IMO. Putting a new countertop on and new flooring can make a huge difference. And if the cabinets are outdated, try painting them instead of buying new ones. A fresh coat of paint is better than nothing.

faux finishing painting

no doubt that there are lots of homeowners who turn to painting..it’s because paintin is the cheapest and easiest home improvement..


I want to do a renovation project on my kitchen and am browsing around to do some research. I have hardwood on my floors and wondering whether or not to get it replaced with tile? I ran across this ad that says new kitchen in a box which only costs $25 and I am wondering if I should give it a try because of the price. This would save me hundreds. My fellow DIY-ERS advice plz?

Leave a Comment


For Real Estate Agents

Online Marekting Solutions

For Home Buyers and Sellers

e.g., 1250 S Main St, Burbank, CA or 91506
     Search Foreclosures    Search New Homes    Search Rentals    

Blog Categories

Blog Archives

Real Estate Blogs

Top Articles

Recent Comments

Guaranteed LeadsReferral Lead ProgramListings PackageVisits to your WebsiteFind REALTOR®Homes For SaleHome Values