LESLIE: Slater in Texas is looking to boost the value of their home. What can we do for you?
SLATER: Well, I’ve got a really nice home. It would remind you of an (inaudible at 0:09:15.5) home in Dallas. It was built in ’56 and it’s real clean and it’s been updated and painted inside and out and all that stuff. But my question is I’m planning on selling it in about a year and I want to know maybe four or five things that I can do that cost the least yet bring the greatest reward when it comes to visual impact and to resale value.
LESLIE: When you’re saying it’s real clean are you talking about the interior has been painted and sort of tidied up or that’s the exterior?
SLATER: Mostly exterior. My interior is really squared away. But on the exterior I’ve got real good curb appeal and it’s real clean and all that but I was thinking of like an eight-foot privacy fence around the back.
TOM: Well, creating outdoor living spaces today is a very popular project and some of the cost-versus-value surveys that are out there show, for example, that installing something like a deck or a patio gives you a really good return on investment. So in terms of your privacy fence, if that’s part of an overall strategy to create an outdoor room space that’s probably a good idea. I would start at the curb. You say you have good curb appeal right now so let’s just review what that means. I hope that your landscaping is in good shape. I hope you’ve got some color in that landscaping. I hope that the outside of your house is well-painted and well-maintained without any rotted areas or distressed areas. I hope that you have good lighting both on the house and on the walkways because that makes a big difference, too.
There was another survey that was done by Therma-Tru that showed that replacing your front door can drive up the home value as much as $24,000. They did an interesting study where they showed photographs of homes with and without front door makeovers – new entryways in them – and they asked focus groups to estimate what the homes were worth and every, single time the homes that had the improved front door were judged to be worth a whole lot more money than the homes without it. So you know, those are the kinds of things that you could do that could really drive up home value and make the house easier to sell.
TOM: And Slater, we’re running a contest right now on MoneyPit.com. It’s called the Ugliest Door in America contest. So if you’re thinking about changing your front door enter that contest and the folks at Therma-Tru could replace it for free.
TOM: And Slater if you want to enter that contest you’ve got to do it before July 1st and again that’s at MoneyPit.com.
Slater, thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.