Thinking about or getting ready to put your home on the market? This can be a time of trepidation and uncertainty for homeowners. You start to worry about things like the appearance and condition of your home, finding the right Realtor, and – most importantly – whether you’ll get your asking price.

Even if you’ve taken great care of your home, it can still be difficult to be at the head of the class when competing against other desirable properties in and around your neighborhood. But thankfully there are simple and relatively inexpensive improvements you can make to your home to help improve its value once you’ve decided to sell. Here are 4.

Slap on a new coat of paint

You would be surprised at the power a fresh coat of paint can have. Like many other items on this list, cosmetic updates are among the simplest ways to increase value. Not only can it help during the appraisal process, but prospective buyers always react positively to fresh, updated finishes.

It couldn’t be easier. Pick out some paint, lay down some drop cloths, put on some old work clothes and get to work. Make a weekend out of it and do it as a family! Painting can be a lot of fun.

If you don’t have the time to go the extra mile and paint the outside, at least make sure to give it a good power wash to get rid of all the dirt and grime. This is an important one.

Update your kitchen and bathroom

Kitchens and bathrooms are the best places to invest some love and attention when you’re looking for good ways to increase home value. You don’t have to go all out and replace cabinetry necessarily, but small changes like replacing hinges, knobs, and handles to updated hardware styles will instantly change the character of the space. Stainless steel and brass are almost always advantageous to incorporate into your kitchen or bathroom.

If your feeling even more adventurous, consider changing light fixtures, faucets and even appliances. Just keep your budget in mind and make the decisions that work best for you. These might not be first on the priority list of cosmetic improvements, but every situation is unique.

Install new floors

We’re biased, sure, but your Realtor will likely agree: new carpet and flooring will change the tune of an Open House as quickly as, or more quickly, than virtually any other design element. Want to add real value? Change main floor areas from carpet to hardwood or change old linoleum to a current porcelain tile. These types of flooring upgrades will turbo-charge a listing.

Current trends call for waterproof resilient plank in basements (and often Kitchens/laundry rooms, mudrooms, etc.); hardwood throughout the main living areas; carpet in a g=Great Room or Family Room and on steps and in bedrooms, of course.

Take care of the lawn

It’s not just the inside of your home that requires fine-tuning when preparing to list. Keeping your property exterior well maintained is absolutely key. Your Realtor will insist that you create as much ‘curb appeal’ as possible.

Obviously, keeping the grass cut, green and fertilized to stay healthy is a must. However, there are other ways you can go the extra mile and increase your value.

If you don’t mind getting in a little front yard Zen gardening time, pull up any weeds in your flower beds and plant some new flowers. You may even consider planting a few new shrubs, bushes, and heck, maybe even a small tree or two. All of these exterior touches are surefire boosts to property value.

To get more money out of your home, consider investing in it. New flooring can sometimes be expensive, but there are easy ways to help reduce the price and your overall out-of-pocket expense. Download a copy of our free Flooring Money Saving Guide, packed with tips and information on the best buying and comparing practices and way to save your hard-earned dollars.