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Biggest “Bang for Your Buck” with These Home Updates

Get the Biggest “Bang for Your Buck” with These Home Updates


We’ve had a lot of people asking us what they can do to update their older homes. Owners want to get their home ready to sell and want to make sure they can get the “biggest bang for their buck”. Of course, each person has their own taste and design, but there are colors and styles that appeal to a larger portion of the population than others, when it comes to homebuyers.


We are sure you have noticed all the “fix and flip” home shows on TV and Knoxville is no exception when it comes to investors flipping. With that being said, it has set a new standard for homeowners that are wanting to sale to make their own home compete with the flip houses. Now it is more important than ever to invest money and elbow grease in your home to help show its full potential.


When planning and budgeting for your updates, you will need to keep in mind that updates are not the only selling point you need to consider. A lot of your homes value will depend on location, the housing market, age and many other factors. You certainly don’t want to put more money in your home than you will be able to recoup and hopefully make a profit. This is when you have to find out that sweet spot in your area that packs the biggest punch to help it stand out from the other homes for sale in your neighborhood. It is also smart to get a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA). A CMA is research done on homes in your area that are for sale or have sold in the last few months to get a clear picture of the price range you can expect to sell your home for. The Knoxville housing market changes rapidly, so it is important to see what your home is worth currently.


Updates that get you “Bang for Your Buck”


  1. A fresh coat of paint in a neutral color throughout your home

Your space will feel and appear larger if you stay with a light tan throughout your home keeping the moldings and doors a white color is ideal. If you have beautiful stained trim, keep it and just freshen it up.


  1. Update the kitchen and bathrooms without completely replacing everything! If you splurge and get granite countertops the buyers will jump for joy. Even if you replace Formica countertops with a new, modern version that has the look of granite, is a less costly choice but a nice update.  Add coordinating glass tile backsplash and you just customized a look without breaking the bank. If the bathroom cabinets are outdated and old but still structure sound, then a good sanding and paint with a nice Espresso type color and a new counter and you will be amazed at the difference. These will definitely NOT go unnoticed by any homebuyer.


  1. New flooring

Flooring can be a significant investment that has a huge impression on buyers. Avoid colors that are too dark or too light, remember always a nice neutral color is the best.


  1. Replace brass fixtures – A nice brushed nickel or oil rubbed bronze will look much better. Lowes and Home Depot often have some fixtures on clearance which can do the trick for a reasonable price.


If you are unable to do all the suggested updates, just one or two will help wonders.


If you were planning on selling your home in the Knoxville area or still in the planning stage, give us a call at 865-218-1159.  We would be happy to provide you with a free CMA and give you some ideas on preparing for the housing market.

Knoxville’s Real Estate Market Update


Since January of 2013 homes for sale in the Knoxville area in the price range from $400,000 or less have improved considerably over the past few years. Homes priced between $400,000 and $500,000 are selling however the home must be in great condition with plenty of upgrades and exceptional landscaping.  The upper priced bracket home over $500,000 has decreased considerably from what was selling in 2004 – 2006.  The reason is the economy and fewer Buyers are not willing to spend that kind of money for a home because of uncertainty.

The good news for homes in the upper price range is HAFA and HAMP have extended the expiration date for homes “underwater” until December 31, 2015 according to CDPE.  This program offers assistance to homeowners through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac who have completed over 2.6 million foreclosure prevention actions.   Currently we do not see this happening in the market.


                                                                        STATISTICS FROM MLS

                                                                                    PRICE RANGE

                                                <$400,000     $400,000 -500,000  $500,000+

Active Listings                           2,392                       142                          341

Under Contract                          1,090                          37                           52

SOLD   (since 1/1/13+)              1,943                            90                          69

The above stats include the entire Knoxville area.   Look for next month’s blog as we will cover certain areas, North, South, East and West.

Until we read again … May the Frank Be With You.  If you know of any one thinking of Buying or Selling Real Estate in the Knoxville area please let us know.  All The Best!



How to Prepare Your Home For Sale

Sold sign

Just had several closing and asked the Buyer’s “Why did you purchase this particular home? What stood out  to you?

Guess what the Buyer said?

The home was CLEAN! Yes CLEAN!

The 5 most important CRUCIAL TIPS TO get your home SOLD!  How to Prepare Your Home for Sale are the following:

  1. You must have a CLEAN home.  Yes, staging the home is important but having a CLEAN home no newspapers and magazines lying around, shirts hung up, closets, desks and countertops organized etc.
  2.  Landscaping – Spring time is around the corner grass is starting to turn GREEN.  If you like the Green you have to keep the lawn looking green.  Nice and trimmed, sticks picked up etc.  This will entice the Buyer to want to view the inside.  Since, the inside is going to be CLEAN the home will be SOLD.
  3.  Starting from the top – the Roof must be in good shape.  If you live in West Knoxville the roof should be NEW by now after the hail storm of 2011.
  4.  CARPET must be in good+ to excellent condition!  We have several good companies in Knoxville. Not average, worn, lets negotiate the carpet.  The HARDWOOD floors must be shiny not marked with scratches.
  5. PAINT, PAINT, PAINT – A little “sweat equity” will go a long way. Just to spend a littlefamily time and get the kids room painted a neutral color taupe, off white, gold are my suggested colors.

I promise this will help you get your home SOLD.

We would love to hear from you!!! Post comments below what worked for you on the sale of your home!

Deal of the Month!!

Boost Your Home’s Value part 1

With the real estate market being competitive, you want to make sure YOUR home stands out to any buyer that walks through the door.  Here are a few TIPS to

“Modernize Living Areas”

  • Try a fresh coat of paint.  You would be amazed at how fresh and clean your home will feel with new wall color.  Try to stay neutral but that doesn’t mean go boring white or beige!  Try the taupes and light grays, they are great for living areas and bedrooms.  It seems for kitchens, buyers prefer more “cheery” colors, such as pale yellow or soft greens!
  • Change hardware and switch plates.  I’m sure you have heard that changing hardware on your cabinetry can make a world of difference, and it truly can…but take it one step further and replace the outlet & switch covers.  Depending on the feel you want through your home, you may want to try the satin nickel or the oil-rubbed bronze.  It makes your rooms look more fresh and new.
  • Clutter-be-gone.  Probably the most important item to achieve when selling your home is to get rid of clutter.  You may have to rent a storage unit but having the clutter gone will make the rooms appear move spacious and larger.  Buyers like open floor plans but this helps even with an older home that do not have them.

One thing you want to do when you are selling your home is walk up the driveway and to your front door.  The way a potential buyer would walk to your door.  Notice the landscaping, curb appeal and how the front porch and front door looks as you approach it.  A fresh coat of paint on the front door can do wonders and conceal scratches and fading from the sun.  The most popular colors that appeal to buyers are black and red (as long as it matches your homes color), but don’t go overboard with the color.  A little goes a long way!