Love it or List it? Remodel to Sell

The topic today is Love It or List It, based on popular HGTV show. If you didn’t catch the first round of this post, Remodel to Love It, you can read that here.

Remodeling to Sell vs Remodeling to List, these are two TOTALLY different remodels. Hence the two posts!

In this post, we’re tackling the ever-popular topic, remodeling to sell. And not JUST sell, but sell quickly and for top dollar.

The reason that “Love it or List it” is so popular (my opinion) is what homeowner hasn’t been faced with this dilemma, or soon will be?

The grass is greener, the neighbors seem nicer, and with all the open houses that smell like vanilla tobacco candles it’s only a matter of time until the thought passes your mind that you live in a bonafide dump. In my previous post I made some strong arguments for staying put, so now let’s discuss reasons to break up with your current home.

1. Relocating
Whether for work, convenience, school, to be closer to family, some things can’t be helped. Under these conditions, it’s better to come to terms and accept that you’ll be moving, and see it for what it is, a new adventure and the opportunity for you to upgrade your digs and your life.

2. Can’t fit a size 9 into a size 5 or visa versa
Too small, too large, there’s no amount of remodel that’s ever going to make this home and/or neighborhood the right one for you. Luckily the housing market is still strong and this is a great time to sell.

3. You fell in love
You weren’t planning on moving, but then that home on that better street with the cul-de-sac and views came on the market and it was love at first sight. That home has all the bells and whistles, all you need is to bring your suitcase and toothbrush. You can’t pack fast enough.

4. You just can’t
Living in your house during a remodel is a special kind of hell. The bigger the job the larger and longer the questions: how long you’ll be living with everything torn asunder, eating off paper plates, with so much dust there aren’t enough Swiffers in the entire world, and contractors that show up for one hour to do ??? and then leave again. You’d rather move into a new home and then schedule the remodel in your old home in order to retain the minute amount of sanity you have left.

Hey, it happens! Even though moving is rough there are times when it TOTALLY makes sense to list your home and close that chapter, for a variety of reasons that equal one big gigantic great decision. There are plenty of well qualified buyers in the market that are raring to buy. When embarking on this remodel, 

Repeat after me:
“It’s not about me, it’s about them”

Yep, this is about remodeling your home to appeal to your ideal buyer. This has nothing to do with you.

Are you selling a condo in an urban area? That’s a different remodel from a 4 bed/4 bath single family in suburbia. It’s important to know WHO you are going to be designing for, and their aesthetic.

Even when considering your ideal buyer, you’ll be making design choices that are neutral, classic and safe. Note, this doesn’t mean boring, there’s a difference. You can be safe and still be interesting. Example: subway tile is about as safe as you can get. But rather than installing it in a horizontal pattern, opt for a herringbone or block pattern instead.

With this remodel, your eye is on your dollars. You want to spend just enough to update your home and make it appealing, yet you want to recoup your investment costs when your home sells and then some. Invest the most in your kitchen and bathrooms (master first). Upgrade your lighting and floors if needed.

It’s SO IMPORTANT to make this point: DO NOT make the cheapest choice for every option. Cheap is exponential, it multiplies a thousand times over and reeks of bad taste and desperation. Today’s buyers are savvy and can spot mediocrity a mile away.
Make carefully selected upgrades, and inexpensive choices that look luxe. Know where to spend and where to save. Tell a story throughout your home and remodel with your ideal buyer in mind, and you’ll sell your home quickly and for top dollar.

If you don’t know how to pull this remodel together (and most people do not), I HIGHLY RECOMMEND getting design help. We offer packages starting at only $150 for an online design consultation. Reach out to us at to schedule your complimentary, 15-minute Discovery Call to discuss your project.

The List It Board

Safe yet interesting choices for Listing It, clockwise:

Black subway tile in a herringbone pattern, Amazon, $79.99

Ivy Court Antiqued Brass Pendant, Overstock, $256

Cafe Electric Range, Home Depot, $2790

Karin Johannesson Transparent Petals and Orchid Study IX, One Kings Lane, $74.50 each

Modern Femme Wallpaper, West Elm, $117 per roll

Delta Trinsic Faucets in Black Matte Finish, Amazon, Single, $363

Benjamin Moore paint in White Opulence and Edgecomb Gray

*Some of these items may contain affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission should you choose to purchase. This is at no cost to you.*