Low Cost Facelifts

Getting your home ready to sell can be a daunting task, especially if your outdated kitchen or bathroom needs some renovation. Consider these low cost facelifts that are easy on your checkbook and good for your sale’s bottom line.

In the Kitchen

First, give the space a vigorous cleaning and reduce surface clutter. Buy some inexpensive organizers, such as stackable plate racks, drawer dividers, pull-out recycling and trash centers, and tiered spice racks. A hanging pot rack can free up an entire lower cabinet, and it’s decorative! Being organized will create the impression of plenty of space and make your kitchen more efficient.

In addition to reducing clutter, you may need to give dated cabinets a facelift with trim and paint or new stain. Be sure to sand and prime first. Adding new door handles and drawer pulls is a small change that makes a big difference. Also, consider installing under-the-cabinet lights for illuminating countertop tasks and added drama.At aminimum, replace burned-out bulbs and broken switch plates.

Your kitchen sink is often a focal point, so invest in new faucets to give the whole room an updated look. If the countertop tile grout is dingy, have it redone or consider replacing the countertop. Granite tiles are now reasonably priced, and they add a huge wow factor. Plus, they are do-it-yourself friendly. Also, if the sink doesn’t sport a backsplash, installing one yourself is easy. Create a high-tech look with stainless steel, copper, or aluminum metallic laminate sheets.

Stainless steel appliances are all the rage, but rather than invest a lot of money replacing your existing “unsexy” ones, update them with metallic laminates. Another option is refurbishing them with special appliance paint that is washable and durable. Black is quite stylish.

Floor dingy? Colorful linoleum and vinyl tile are back, and neither will break the bank; some of it even replicates wood. Be sure to coordinate your overall color scheme for flooring, cabinets, countertops, as well as wall paint, for a professional look. Then add complementary accents.

In the Bathroom

Once again, cleaning, decluttering, and organizing are key. That grimy shower door can be made to shine by cleaning it with a mixture of one part muriatic acid and about 10 parts water, then scrubbing with steel wool. Consider nixing the shower door altogether and adding a stylish shower curtain. This, along with fresh paint and new towels can add a lot of pop. Plus, new faucets, flooring, and updated lighting will add significant value.

If the counter tile is dated, it can be painted instead of replaced. Coat the tiles with a high-adhesion primer, then brush on a special ceramic epoxy. Voila! A new look. If you’re thinking of replacing the vanity instead, consider replacing it with a pedestal sink. They’re “in” and they free up a lot of floor space. A dingy bathtub can also be resurfaced, but you may need to hire a specialist for that job.

Buyers are awed by updated kitchens and bathrooms, and most of these fixes can be accomplished at minimal cost. Consult your local home improvement store for do-it-yourself advice or view any of the several home improvement television shows or websites for these and many more tips.

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