If you’re in the midst of a residential transition after your separation or divorce, you are likely feeling overwhelmed. New schedules, new financial circumstances, emotional turmoil, confusion, changing relationships and anxious children can all lead to heightened levels of stress. Adding fuel to the fire, a pending separation or divorce can necessitate the sale of your marital home and this can mean an unexpected shift in focus and priority. To optimize the value of your home, you may feel you need to scramble to:
- Repair cracked tiles, loose floorboards, damaged walls and toppled decks.
- Paint the house and fix the chips (has it been 12 years?)
- Update kitchens and bathrooms (that were last decorated in the 1990’s).
- Fix exterior siding, fences and interlocking.
- Finish the basement (which you have been meaning to do for the last decade). Finished basements add value.
These repairs and updates can be costly and time consuming. With a pressing need to sell, you must prioritize and determine how you will get the best ‘bang for your home improvement buck’.
“To get the most out of your marital home sale, it is important to disassociate emotionally”
To get the most out of your marital home sale, it is important to disassociate emotionally. Even though this was your family home, and it is difficult to let go, you will not be able to make objective decisions about improvements and repair if you can’t take a step back. You may find that easier by hiring an outside professional to manage the improvements and repairs you need to make.
Sometimes, the most dramatic impact to a house can be made with just minor changes and repairs. As a first step, focus on:
- Patching holes or cracks in walls
- Replacing cracked tiles and counter tops
- Fixing doors and cabinets that don’t close properly and kitchen drawers that are jammed
- Re-caulking tubs and sinks
- Bleaching dingy grout
- Painting the entire home, a neutral color
- Repairing and repainting window trims
These small and relatively inexpensive changes can leave the impression that your house is clean, tidy, updated and fresh, which will lead to a faster and more profitable sale.