Maximizing the sale price of your home

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Millennials-- the generation of Americans between the ages of 18 and 34--are entering the housing market in huge numbers. They are now the biggest group of real estate buyers. Millennials want move-in ready homes. Consumer Reports says the right renovations can boost your homes' value by 35 percent! So spend your makeover money where it will count the most.

A Consumer Reports survey of more than 1,500 millennials nationwide found that a modern, updated kitchen tops their list of ideal home features. And you don't need to spend a lot. For as little as $5,000, you can add a new suite of stainless-steel appliances, new flooring, and a new countertop. You'll have a clean, contemporary look that could lead to a 3 to 7 percent bump in the sale price.

Have a bigger budget? Think about knocking down a wall. Millennials are also looking for an open floor plan with flexible living space. That could increase your selling price another 4 to 6 percent.

Another good way to add value is by expanding the living space, maybe by finishing your attic or basement. And it's always a good idea to use materials that don't require a lot of maintenance, like countertops made of quartz, which shrugs off heat, scratches, and stains.

Also consider ditching dust-catching wall-to-wall carpet in favor of durable hardwood floors. And don't overlook the power of paint. A fresh coat, particularly in high-traffic areas, can boost your selling price another 1 to 2 percent.

Real estate pros also say energy efficiency is another strong selling point. Lowering your home's energy costs will also save you money while you live there.
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