Using Space and Color to Upsell Your Home

Using Space and Color to Upsell Your Home

Using Space and Color to Upsell Your Home


Your home might be decked to the nines with ultra-cool interior design, but the key to selling your home is giving some TLC to the features that define your spaces. Homepolish's Alex Waidley talks about surefire ways to make sure the sale goes in your favor.

Making the decision to update your home can be daunting for a lot of homeowners looking to sell, mostly because when someone is getting ready to leave their home they don’t want to pour a ton of money into something they won’t get to enjoy themselves. (It only makes sense, right?) But what if I were to tell you that investing in certain home updates will actually put more money in your pocket by appealing to buyers’ emotions (and thus their likelihood to write a higher offer)? The key is making the right updates for a reasonable amount of money and making choices that are appealing to a wide audience.


1. Walls

The rule of thumb is to update whatever takes up the most visual space. This will affect potential future buyers’ the most. When you look around what covers the majority of your home? Walls! And there is no more affordable way to make a huge impact on your home than painting. When selecting paint colors for your home, neutrals are best. Back when I worked in real estate, a couple of our go-to crowd pleasers were Benjamin Moore’s Swiss Coffee, Edgecomb Grey, and White Dove. And for trim, you can’t go wrong with Benjamin Moore’s Simply White or the gold standard Decorator’s White. A good example is the gallery white walls in Homepolish designer Michelle Zack’s work for two bachelors in New York.


2. Floors

Another huge surface area… floors! Most buyers are fine with hardwood, even if it’s a little worn, since they can refinish them easily enough. But old carpet makes people feel all, well, gross inside. Change that old carpet out for some fresh dark gray low-pile goodness to give buyers the warm and fuzzies. Or, go for something more bold, like the antelope carpeting that Homepolish’s Jordan Shields used in this Pasadena home.


3. Cabinets and Counters

Another home piece that covers a lot of visual space (and always provides an opportunity for a WOW moment) are cabinets and counters. People hate to look at old-yucky-take me back to the 80’s-cabinets and countertops. This goes along with the theory that kitchens and bathrooms sell homes. Now you’re probably thinking cabinets are hella expensive. And you know what, they can be! But here’s a trick… Something we always did in real estate to save money was have all the original cabinets sanded down and then painted in an on-trend color. Right now, that would be something like a dark grey (try Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal), white (White Dove or Super White), or even that alluring greenish gray (aka sage) you see all over Pinterest (try a mix of Sherwin Williams 50% Oyster Bay and 50% Retreat). Then just top those suckers off with some great pulls or knobs. They are so affordable and affect the overall impression of your kitchen or bathroom.

For counters, the material doesn’t need to be expensive, as long as it’s in an on-trend color and finish. Even if it isn’t the granite or marble of a buyer’s dreams, they just need to feel that they can be totally happy cooking in your kitchen and applying mascara in your bathroom, even if they may want to update in the future.


4. Light Fixtures

Lastly, and this does not fit with the “large surface theory,” but people HEART light fixtures! It totally affects how they see your whole home… eyes are naturally drawn to light sources. 90% of old homes I dealt with had those domed flush mounts with a ball at bottom (aka the boob light). Guess what? Most buyers don’t love these. Replace those old standard pieces with something more modern but also very affordable. I’m talking $50-80 dollars. Wayfair is great for this!


And if all of that sounds way too overwhelming, you could always hire a Homepolish designer to manage this process for you.