Updated Appliances Go a Long Way Toward Attracting Prospective Buyers

By Keith Loria

From upping a property’s curb appeal to decluttering the space and staging it to attract a wide range of prospective buyers, preparing a home to be listed on the market can be a time-consuming process. However, if you’re in the early stages of preparing for a sale, it’s crucial that you take the time to ensure that the major appliances within the home are in good, working condition. 

This may mean replacing appliances before even putting your house on the market. A good rule of thumb is to update any kitchen appliances that are more than 10 years old—especially if they do not offer energy-savings. You don’t need to buy the most expensive appliances available, but new ones will always make a better impression among prospective buyers than outdated ones. 

When it comes to replacing appliances, replacing just one can do more damage than good. For instance, if you bring in a new dishwasher, that old oven is going to be an eyesore. Therefore, if you only have the money to buy one new appliance, most agents recommend going with a new refrigerator. 

If you’re thinking about updating any of the appliances within your home, be sure to consider the cost of the house when making decisions, as the price of appliances should be in line with current comparables. For example, a $200,000 home would not necessarily warrant a Sub-Zero refrigerator, while a million dollar home should not have a lower-end dishwasher and range. 

It’s also important to keep in mind that most buyers have a fondness for stainless steel kitchen appliances, so if you’re going to upgrade, you should consider incorporating these types of appliances into your home. If you choose to go with a specific color instead, try to match everything and create a unified look in order to maximize eye-appeal. In the end, selling your home is all about getting potential buyers to become emotionally attached, which may prove to be more difficult with non-functioning and/or mismatched kitchen appliances.

While some say that bringing in new appliances is a waste of money because more often than not buyers have their own vision and plans for the kitchen, it doesn’t hurt to take one thing off their to-do list. 

In the end, a small investment of a couple thousand dollars—or even less—on appliances can do wonders in creating a kitchen that house hunters will clamor over. New appliances can make an older kitchen fresh and exciting and can even distract from cabinets, floors and tiling that might be unattractive and ancient.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2013. All rights reserved.