Painting your house when you’re thinking of moving may seem counterproductive. After all, you’ll soon be in a new house, and someone else will be enjoying the benefits of that new paint job rather than you, right?

Wrong.

Actually cleaning and painting before putting your home on the market can yield a higher purchase price and expedite the sale of your home. You don’t have to spend a lot of time or money, but taking the time to attend to the basics can reap great rewards.
Start from the top

A bright-white ceiling flat paint can add life to a room. Look for a paint, such as California Paints, that have a high titanium content, which helps hide imperfections and it is formulated to be the brightest ceiling white available. The anti-spatter formulation keeps messes to a minimum.

l Freshen up.

If you do not have the time (or the desire) to paint all of the interior rooms, focus on the ones that will have the greatest impact. Kitchens and baths instantly look cleaner with a fresh coat of white paint.

Touch-up trim to eliminate marks, scratches and scuffs. Cigarette smoke can stain walls and ceilings making them look yellow and dingy. A coat of neutral paint is worthwhile because it provides what buyers want: a home that looks clean, fresh and ready to be lived in.

“If you do choose to paint an entire room, the color can alter how the dimensions of the room are perceived,” suggests Aimee Desrosiers of Andover, Mass.-based California Paints. “A light-colored paint will make a small room appear bigger and darker shades will make a room seem more intimate. You can use these paint-induced optical illusions to your favor.”

l Look out.

If you decide to paint the entire exterior of your home, select your colors wisely. California Paints Environmental Designer Joshua Greenblatt adds, “Choosing a color that is trendy may help you attract younger buyers, but conversely some colors of years past clearly date your home.

The safest bet would be to choose neutrals that compliment the surrounding neighborhood and your home’s architectural style. If in question, visit your independent neighborhood paint store, most have color help available for free.”

l Front and center.

First impressions are crucial, so pay extra attention to your front yard and the front of your house. Although there are no quick-fixes for an entire exterior paint job that is cracked, peeling or in disrepair, one afternoon of effort can improve your home’s overall presentation. Refinish or paint the front door and polish the doorknob and hardware.

Straighten, repair and clean fencing before touching up the wood or metal. Remove rust spots from metal railings and mailboxes and coat with primer and then a metal finish. A good exterior presentation is a must. Some people won’t even go into a house if it doesn’t have good curb appeal.


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