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From curb appeal to wood floors, home buyers are looking for features that add value

November 01, 2013

Energy efficiency is at the top of the list for many home buyers these days, and they often look for top-rated appliances, new windows and good insulation when they attend realtors' open houses. But they also appreciate beauty, and the appeal of hickory hardwood flooring in Anderson's Chestnut Hill collection adds value to the investment for many house seekers.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, first impressions count when a house goes on the market. Well-maintained landscaping and a welcoming front entrance are important to get prospective home buyers to look at a property.

Once inside, Energy Star-rated kitchen appliances, attractive moldings and good quality flooring are some of the items that attract serious offers. To make a sale, for instance, it may be worth investing in a few new appliances to replace older models that don't meet current standards.

Meeting home buyers' needs
Everyone's looking for more places to store their personal goods. If they can have a linen closet in the bathroom, shelving units lining the garage and a separate laundry room or enclave, that's sure to get buyers' attention. A walk-in pantry off a kitchen is golden.

Wood floors have an air of elegance and spaciousness that wall-to-wall carpeting doesn't convey, which is one reason that Forbes magazine lists them among the items most wanted by home buyers today. If homeowners have hardwood floors beneath carpeting, real estate brokers frequently recommend they pull up the carpet and clean or refinish the wood to bring it to prime condition.

Places for work and play
NAHB has also found that younger families place a high premium on high-tech rooms for all their media and gaming needs, with the wiring components in place to accommodate these pastimes.

Space for a home office also tops the Forbes list of must-haves. Having space that could be viewed as a "bonus room," even if it's only one part of a finished basement, will help home buyers envision an office area.

People are trying to expand their living space as much as possible. One easy way to do that is to have a well-designed patio or deck available for family meals and social gatherings.

Keeping the backyard landscaping in good shape is also considered part of a home's curb appeal. Home sellers should consider repairs to fences and walkways along with keeping the greenery healthy and manicured in both front and back areas.