How to Maximize Value of Your Marin County Home

How to Maximize Value of Your Marin County Home

  • Austin Klar
  • 11/6/22

When you’re considering listing your Marin County property for sale, sometimes the best way to maximize the value of your home is to take the time to make updates and improvements.  But it’s challenging to know which upgrades are necessary, and whether those upgrades will actually yield more value when your home hits the market. Every real estate market in the country is independent and unique from, which means that certain improvements will be coveted in some areas but not in others, so it is critical to understanding your local Marin County real estate market before diving into costly and time-consuming repairs.

Marin County is known for its high-end, luxurious homes, including upscale features and layouts not typically found in the average American home. Of course, like any luxury buyers, the majority of Marin County real estate buyers seek modern fixtures and appliances, open floor plans, and refined additions that exude the feeling of a luxury hotel. But, Marin County buyers, unlike typical buyers in San Francisco, often look to live in their homes for the rest of their lives and, for that reason, prioritize the ability to age in place.  This means their primary sleeping quarters, living space, kitchen, and laundry area are all on the main floor of the house such that when they age, they do not have to traverse steep stairs and multiple floors every day.

Read below to see what upgrades and renovations can yield a higher sale price and help you stand out from other Marin County homes for sale.

Boost your Marin County home’s curb appeal

First impressions are everything, and the exterior and front facade of your home are the first things a buyer will see when they pull up the driveway. For that reason, curb appeal is the key to immediately setting a positive tone as buyers make their way into the home. To boost your home’s curb appeal, start by removing weeds, trimming the lawn and trees, removing fallen tree branches and leaves, and adding flower and/or plant beds for splashes of color, especially along the walkway or near the front of the house.  Creating lush, warm, grand garden space can draw a buyer’s attention and set the right impression from moment one.

If the front door needs replacing, install a new one and consider a color that will grab a buyer’s attention. Similarly, a new garage door can add value and improve the look of the house.

Once that front door is opened, take a look at your entryway. Does it feel open and bright? Can the potential buyer see through to the rest of the house, or does it feel enclosed and separate from the remainder of the property? Removing a wall to expand the entrance, and/or adding light fixtures or a window, might be worth the time and investment.

Paint, paint, paint

Now is the time to repair holes in the walls, remove smudges, and give your home a new appearance. When choosing paint, stay away from bold colors and stick to neutral ones. Your goal is to maximize the number of buyers interested in your home, and by choosing more generic colors, you appeal to a broader audience.  This increases the number of interested buyers who will be able to envision themselves living in the home and possibly adding their own color choices with furniture and décor down the line.

Update hardware and fixtures

Consider whether to install new hardware and light fixtures. These items don’t have to be extremely expensive, but buyers will notice they’re new. Updating light fixtures, switch plates, faucets, and other hardware around the home will give it a modern and clean look that buyers will appreciate.

Create a spa-like primary bathroom

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In Marin County, prospective home buyers are looking for a primary bathroom that has luxurious amenities and a spa-like feel. Replacing outdated vanities, countertops, cabinets, and fixtures is a must. Also consider raising the upscale vibes with heated flooring, a large bathtub, or an expanded shower stall. Renovating a primary bathroom with the appropriate fixtures can be one of the highest yielding renovations you can make when preparing your home for the market.

If the lighting is poor, perhaps replace the current window with a larger one to allow more natural light, or add additional light fixtures, under-cabinet lighting, or brighter paint colors to warm up the room. You can also install speakers so that ambient music can play while a family member takes a bath or prepares for the day.

Remodel the kitchen

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Remodeling the kitchen will provide the best value when it’s time to sell. Buyers in Marin County want an open floor plan so the kitchen flows into the living room and other areas that residents will use the most. This makes the kitchen larger, and whoever is cooking can socialize with family and guests at the same time.

If the kitchen is closed off from the living and dining area, removing a wall to open it up should immediately increase the value from a buyer’s perspective. Update cabinets and appliances with premium products including marble countertops, a wine fridge, and new flooring.

Update the windows and roof

If the home is older and doesn’t have energy-efficient windows that effectively insulate the interior, installing new ones is recommended. And although replacing a roof is a big expense, if it’s time for a new one, don’t hold off. A prospective buyer will be turned off if they know they must install a roof upon moving in.

Add a gated entry

In a community such as Marin County, having a home with a gated entry promotes affluence, privacy, and a sense of security.  Buyers in luxury neighborhoods appreciate a home that has the exclusivity a gated entry can provide, and such an entry adds to the curb appeal. 

If you want an assessment of what your home might need to maximize its value on the open market, reach out to Austin Klar. As an experienced agent in the luxury Marin County real estate market, and manager of a real estate investment fund that develops homes in Marin County, Austin understands the true cost and time required for renovations, and has access to dedicated resources who can get the job done efficiently.

If you are moving to Marin County, explore the top things to do and the best schools for your child prior to settling in.

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