retirement planning

For most of us, our homes are the biggest part of our retirement planning strategy, so when it comes time to downsize, it’s important to maximize your return.  Whether you’re ready to sell now, or you’re looking a few years down the road, there are things you can do to make your home more appealing (and likely more profitable). According to the National Association of Realtors, “eighty-one percent of realtors agree that it’s easier for a buyer to visualize a staged property as a future home.” It is also important to identify key rooms that should stand out. Highest on the list is the living room, followed by the kitchen, master bedroom and finally the dining room.

On average, it costs about $675 to stage a property, making it a very affordable option for most. It’s also a good idea to research your target buyer. For the single-family homebuyer, your home will need to be “move-in” ready. If it isn’t, spending the time to do the repairs is important. To that end, applying a fresh coat of paint on the outside, pressure washing the driveway and front walk, and trimming hedges and trees contribute to your home’s curb appeal.

In fact, a well-landscaped home can sell for 5.5 percent to 12.7 percent more than a home with no landscaping.1 If key areas of your home sorely need updating, you don’t need to reach too deeply into your pockets to give your kitchen or bathroom a lift. A fresh coat of paint on dated cabinets, granite countertops and adding some new appliances can do the trick at a fraction of the cost of an entire remodel. For a bigger budget, some major exterior renovations can make a huge difference. Cannon Christian, president of Renovation Realty, suggested replacing worn vinyl siding. New vinyl siding can have an 80 percent or higher return on investment, according to Christian.

Of course, keeping the maintenance up is critical. Otherwise, you’ll have a long list of items to contend with post-inspection. And knowing when to sell is key. Right now, in many parts of the country, homes are in high demand. If you’re on the fence as to how the sale of your home fits into your retirement strategy, we’re here to help at


25 Tricks to Sell Your House for a Bigger Profit. Nasdaq. 14, July.

Tweddale, Alaina. How to sell your house for a bigger profit. Las Vegas Review-Journal. 4, Aug. 2015

1A well-landscaped home can sell for anywhere between 5.5 percent 12.7 percent more than a home with no landscaping, according to a review of research by a Virginia Tech horticulturist, as reported by SFGate.

This material is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.