Plymouth and Bristol County Real Estate - Larry Costa


If you’d like to increase the value of your home by a slight amount before you even think of putting it on the market, you may be hesitant to make any kind of an investment. There are numerous upgrades that you can make to your home for under one thousand dollars. In the long run, these upgrades could help to save you some serious money. 


Put In A Programmable Thermostat


The majority of energy usage in your home is consumed by your heating and cooling systems. Using a programmable thermostat can help to keep the temperature inside your home stable throughout the day. Your heating and cooling system won’t need to continually start and restart to create a stable temperature in the home. This could be a great assistance in long-term energy and utility bill savings.


Get A New Toilet


If you want to impress buyers, put a new stylish looking toilet in your home. Upgrading your toilet can also bring your energy costs down. It will use less water with each flush and save you on your water bill.


Re-tile The Bathroom


Tiling a room yourself can be fairly inexpensive. It can also help you to breathe new life into the bathroom. Your tub will look brand new. Buyers will leave thinking that you have done an entire remodel of the bathroom. All you really need to do is replace some tile and grout. It’s a DIY project that can truly pay off with big dividends.


Re-tile Your Floors


Just like the bathroom, putting in a new kitchen tile or floor can really bring back some life into the room. Tile helps to rejuvenate the space by getting rid of dirty, tired flooring and backsplashes. 


If you need professional installation for any of these projects, you can splurge on it a bit. It does take some know how to understand the proper installation floor and backsplash tiles. Replacing the floors and tiles gives your home a new, clean look that will be an attractive upgrade to your home. 


Put Up New Window Fixtures


Replacing your blinds can really add something to each room of the house. Blinds can collect a lot of dust and dirt over time. While you may wash and clean them, sometimes, the dirt gets to a point where it’s completely stuck on. If you want to really make your buyers “wow,” try wood blinds. Most home improvement stores have a wide array of options for window blinds that allow you to customize both the size and style of your blinds.


Any upgrades that you can make to your home are an improvement for you while you’re living in it. These changes also allow you to get a bit more of a return on your property once you’re ready to sell.


In a competitive selling market, it’s vital to make sure you take advantage of any way to give your home an edge over the competition.

Many sellers make expensive home improvements in the hopes of attracting buyers. But, even if you’re on a budget, there are ways to boost curb appeal and increase the value of your home to make your home competitive in today’s seller’s market.

In today’s post, I’m going to cover eight low-cost upgrades you can make to your home today. We tried to keep all of the upgrades under $100 so that you can stick to your budget while still making a big difference in your home.

1. Paint the front door ($30)

One of the first things a potential buyer will notice about your home is the front door. Putting on a fresh coat of paint, especially one that pops and contrasts with the color of your home, will help to make it stand out on the block.

2. Paint your interior trim and baseboards ($75 - $100)

Baseboards often get dirty or scuffed up over the years. Putting a fresh coat of paint will make the entire room look like new. Stick with white for most rooms--it will brighten them up and make them feel clean.

3. Replace your outlet and light switch plates ($20)

They get dirty, they crack, and they get covered in messy paint every time you repaint your walls. Outlet and switch plates see a lot of wear and tear, and a dirty one can be off-putting for potential buyers.

For just a few dollars each or less, replace them all to give the rooms of your home a facelift.

4. Replace fixtures ($50 - $100)

Whether it’s the knobs of your kitchen cabinets or faucet fixtures, there are a number of small items in the kitchen and bathrooms that can be upgraded.

Stainless steel is now out of style, with homeowners choosing brushed nickel and bronze over the traditional stainless.

5. Choose a new shower head ($30 - $50)

Installing a shower head is a lot easier than it looks. Plus, luxurious looking shower heads can be purchased for less than $50 on Amazon, making them a great choice to add a touch of indulgence to the shower.

6. Add new bright, energy efficient lighting ($30 - $50)

Bright LEDs can make a room feel more spacious and modern, and it can save you a few dollars on the electric bill. Installing new lights throughout the home is a good way to show off what lies within.

7. Paint or replace your mailbox ($20 - $80)

Mailboxes can easily get dirty and dented over the years and most of us pay little mind to them. But prospective buyers likely will be on the lookout for any signs of neglect when they view your home. Having a freshly painted mailbox will leave a good first impression.

8. Rent a pressure washer for a day ($50 - $100)

Pressure washing the exterior of your home can make a huge difference when it comes to upgrading curb appeal. Vinyl siding gets dirty quickly and isn’t all that easy to clean.

You can rent a pressure washer from The Home Depot or your local hardware store for typically less than $100 a day.


If your home is on the market, you may wonder why it hasn’t moved off the market. There are many ways to make adjustments to the price of your home, but if not done correctly, you could sabotage the sale of your home. Let’s say that you have your home as an FSBO (For sale by owner.) Buyers may wonder what’s behind the price of the house. Does the seller genuinely want to move the home to the sold category quickly? Why has the home been for sale so long? 


You could face the same problems if you’re working with an agency. The difference is that s a seller, the agency is by your side, helping you to make the right decisions when it comes to pricing your home.


Realistic Expectations


You need to be realistic when pricing your home as a seller. Of course, you want to make a return on your home. Of course, you think your home has great value. The critical point is that you need to understand the state of the market along with the neighborhood your home is located. So much goes into the pricing of a house. 


Investigate


Along with your agent, you can do some investigating to see where some improvements could be made in marketing your home. Look at the following:


How has the house been received on the MLS?

Are the significant benefits of the home highlighted?

How many open house opportunities did buyers have?

Are there good pictures of the house online? 

Do the signs leading to the house stand out? 

Can you add anything to the marketing of the home like a virtual tour? 


While real estate agents have general guidelines as to how a home at a certain price point should be marketed, you can always be your own advocate.


The Consequences Of High Pricing


If you price your home too high, there are some consequences. Your home will stay on the market for an extended period of time if it's overpriced. Buyers will wonder why the house has been listed for so long, wondering if there’s something wrong with the property. Buyers will wait even longer to bite on the home in these circumstances because they are waiting for a price drop. 


The Solution


The best thing you can do in this circumstance is to take your home off the market. Work with your real estate agent. He can let you know whether it’s a good time to re-list the home. Perhaps you can make some improvements to the property in the meantime. A fresh listing and a clean look at the house may help buyers to find the property more easily at a price that pleases them!      


Tired of living in the big city? No worries, as there is plenty of demand for residences in cities across the United States.

As a home seller, it is important to learn about a city's housing market. By doing so, you can understand what to expect before you list your property.

Ultimately, selling a home in the city can be a quick and simple process. Here are three tips to ensure you can add your residence to a city's real estate market and maximize the value of your house.

1. Check Out Comparable Residences That Are Currently Available

How does your home stack up against other houses in a particular city? Review comparable homes that are currently available, and you may be able to find ways to differentiate your residence from the competition.

Remember, an informed home seller understands the ins and outs of the local housing market. This individual will learn about his or her property's strengths and weaknesses, and as a result, discover ways to transform assorted home weaknesses into strengths.

Emphasize your city home's interior and exterior as you search for ways to enhance your residence. A clean, uncluttered home interior will make it easy for homebuyers to envision what life would be like if they purchase your house. Meanwhile, a dazzling home exterior will ensure your residence can make an unforgettable first impression on homebuyers.

2. Establish a Competitive Price for Your House

A competitive price can make a world of difference for home sellers in a big city. In fact, a home seller who prices his or her city home aggressively from the get-go may be able to streamline the home selling process.

To determine a fair price for a city residence, assess the prices of recently sold houses in your city. This housing market data will help you determine whether the current real estate market favors homebuyers or home sellers.

Also, don't forget to complete a home appraisal. This home evaluation will enable you to receive expert insights into problem areas throughout your home that you can correct before you list your residence.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is happy to serve home sellers in any way possible. This real estate professional knows what it takes to sell a city home and will allocate the necessary time and resources to promote your residence to the right groups of homebuyers.

With a real estate agent at your side, you should have no trouble stirring up plenty of interest in your city home. A real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses, promote your residence on social media and much more. Perhaps best of all, this real estate professional will respond to your home selling queries at any time.

Don't leave anything to chance as you prepare to sell your city home. Use these home selling tips, and you can increase the likelihood that you'll be able to maximize the value of your residence.


Contingencies on a contract to buy a home are there to protect both the buyer and the seller. The contingencies give the buyer the right to back out of the contract if any of these contingencies aren’t met. There are many reasons that buyers back out of deals including financial issues and problems with the home. Below, you’ll find a break down of some of the most common contingencies and what they mean for you as a buyer or a seller.   


Financing Contingency


Most home contracts come with what’s called a financing contingency. This gives you the ability to walk away from a deal if the financing falls through when trying to buy a home. Usually this is due to a credit reason or some other financial reason. You can’t rely on financial cracks to help you to back out of a deal on a home. Lenders will only deny a loan for real financial reasons. There’s no way to ask a lender to lie for you so you can get out of buying a home! This is why you need to make your decision about a home purchase wisely.   



Inspection Contingency


This gives the buyer the right to have an inspection on the home within a certain time frame which is usually 5-7 days. If something is really off with the inspection that you as a buyer don’t feel comfortable with, you have the right to back out of a deal without repercussions. While seller disclosures are important, the seller can’t disclose what they don’t know about. That’s why the home inspection is so important. The seller’s disclosure cannot protect you from hidden damages that may cost half of a home’s worth to repair.   


Appraisal Contingency


If homes are selling fast and you want some secure way to back out of a deal you should consider an appraisal contingency. If the home you want to purchase doesn’t appraise at a price high enough to meet your mortgage requirements, you have a legal way to back out of the deal. For example, if you put down 20 percent of the purchase price of a home and the home doesn't appraise for the value of that purchase price, you’d need to come up with the remainder of the money in cash. An appraisal contingency protects you from having to face this. You’ll still need to have a home inspection done on the home to search for any problems, but an appraisal contingency protects you from any problems with financing and your own disposable amount of cash that could arise due to a home appraising low. 


While contingencies aren’t necessary as a homebuyer, they’re highly recommended. Without contingencies, you could be left with a number of expenses such as damages that are extremely costly to fix.