Whether you want to sell a family home or liquidate an investment property, maximizing your property’s resale potential is crucial to achieving high financial returns. Smaller properties can be challenging to maximize, but there are ways to make a small space as striking as a mansion, ranging from updating the home’s interior to taking advantage of curb appeal.

The following are tips and tricks to help you turn a small property into a wise investment with a maximum return on investment (ROI).

Maximizing the Interior

Making the most of a small property means ensuring your space is decorated but not cluttered. From choosing the right paint colors in critical areas to creating the illusion of more space to prioritizing lighting, there are several ways to maximize the saleability of your small property.

The three main things to consider to unlock the potential of your property’s interior are:

  • Updating interior paint
  • Focusing on lighting
  • Investing in staging

Updating Interior Paint. Color can do a lot for open spaces. In a small space especially, color can be a great tool. It can transform a space by extending a room or hiding less-than-attractive areas. You can achieve plenty of optical illusions with color (and no, you don’t have to be an artist to fool the eye). Here are some ideas for expanding or shrinking a space using paint:

  • Light walls and ceilings paired with a dark floor give the illusion of a larger room.
  • Darker walls and ceilings can shrink space.
  • Painting a back wall and ceiling a darker color but keeping the side walls light can make a room appear longer—and the opposite can make it appear wider.
  • Painting just one wall with a dark color can shorten or shrink a room.
  • Accent colors can widen or shorten your room depending on whether the dark accent is on the bottom (widens) or top (shrinks). Make sure to paint accent colors about chair height to achieve this effect.
  • Lower a tall ceiling by painting it a darker color. Conversely, you can raise a ceiling with darker walls and a bit of light paint.

Adding an accent color to a wall can liven up home design and distract from the square footage of a room. Feel free to go for bright, fun colors—they can make a space seem alive and vibrant, especially with the proper lighting.

Lighting Is Key. Lighting your home comes down to opening up a space without washing it out. If you can use natural lighting, you should always prioritize it. Swap out those dark, light-blocking curtains for bright, gauzy curtains that let in natural light.

If you can’t get natural lighting in a space, opt for warm light from crucial spots throughout the room. Some spaces, like your kitchen or a work area, benefit from white light, but warm, diffused light can elevate your property and create a cozy space.

Pairing the right light with the right space maximizes your small property’s potential and attracts potential buyers. Take a moment to consider each area in your property and the general vibe you’re selling. For example, you can see yourself living in a bedroom with natural lighting during the day and warm, cozy accent lights at night. Conversely, having ample lighting in the kitchen that’s bright enough to cook by, but not overwhelming, can make any kitchen feel like a chef’s paradise.

Staging Is Everything. Staging your home helps buyers see themselves in your home. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) found that staging increased the overall dollar offer on the properties by 1% to 5%.

Here are a few quick tricks to make staging work for you in a small space:

  • Invest in high-quality furniture to give each space its own identity.
  • Focus on critical areas of the home (living room, kitchen, bedroom) and stage these properly.
  • Push furniture back from the wall to give the illusion of extra space.
  • Remove personal items and clutter.
  • Use artwork to guide buyers’ eyes through a room.
  • Finally, use neutral colors to create a blank canvas for potential new owners.

Exterior Upgrades

The exterior design of a space is just as vital as interior design. Here are some key ways to monitor curb appeal and make your landscaping work for you, no matter how small the lot.

Curb appeal is how potential buyers see your home from the outset. It includes things like a garage, access to amenities, and landscaping. You cannot change certain parts of curb appeal (like closeness to amenities) after you buy your property; however, there are some aspects you can change or use to your advantage.

Upgrading the siding, doors, and windows on your home and keeping the gutters well-maintained can upgrade the appearance of your property. In addition, ensure the roof is in good shape and all outside amenities are inviting and ready to use. Making minor fixes on your property can make a huge difference, including pressure-washing sidewalks and walkways and maintaining lawn space. These small, routine acts can significantly affect a buyer’s interest levels.

Achieving a high financial return on a small property requires maximizing its resale potential. There are several ways to do so using design—from updating the interior paint and lighting to creative staging to leveraging curb appeal and updating the landscaping. Using these tips and tricks allows you to turn a small property into a wise investment, despite its size.

Jamie Cohen is a freelance digital marketer and writer with a passion for real estate investing. He enjoys remodeling his family’s first home as a hobby and spending time at dog parks with his two Boston terriers.

  • Jamie Cohen

    Jamie Cohen is a freelance digital marketer and writer with a passion for real estate investing. He enjoys remodeling his family's first home as a hobby, and spending time at dog parks with his two Boston terriers.

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