The 8 Most Profitable Improvements to Make Before Selling Your Seattle Home

profitable tips for seattle home sellers

At the end of 2021, the median home sale in Seattle, WA was $757K – just one short year later, the median is roughly $848K! Even though that’s a great leap in a short span of time, some home sellers are selling for much, much more than that. How, you ask? By making strategic home updates that buyers want and are willing to pay for. Before you put your house on the market, you should know that not all Seattle home improvements are created equally. Without expert guidance, you could end up paying for home updates that are costly and time-consuming… and that don’t actually drive any increase in your home’s value.

So – how do you know which investments to make? Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. Curbio’s team of Home Improvement Consultants are all also real estate agents! Therefore, they can look at your home through the lens of a buyer and leverage their knowledge of the markets to advise on the most lucrative, quick, and painless home improvements to make.

Worried about the expense? Curbio does the work so YOU can make the profit, and defers payment until you close. No fees, no interest. No catch. And if you’re interested in selling your home for the highest price point you can… these are the 8 most valuable Seattle home improvements you can make!

Kitchen upgrades

Modern buyers want modern kitchens. No shocker there. So if yours is functional but needs some TLC, there are a handful of kitchen upgrades you should consider. For example, you could:  

  • Install new appliances, which is a big draw for buyers and helped sellers close for 3.6% above asking price in 2021 
  • Replace dated countertops like laminate with quartz, which is steadily trending up 
  • Refresh (not replace) your kitchen cabinets
  • Upgrade your hardware

And, of course, a fresh coat of paint never hurts.  


This speedy refresh put $140K of additional profit in the sellers’ pocket!


This speedy refresh put $140K of additional profit in the sellers’ pocket!


Next up is HVAC: one of the simplest Seattle home improvements since it sets your home apart from the others. Central AC, in particular, was one of the top 10 most valuable Seattle home features going into 2022. Homes with central air sold for more than 4% above asking price. Granted, 4% may not sound like a lot but it’s actually the difference between selling for $757,000 and selling for just over $787,000. So the question arises: Is your system broken or inefficient?  

If so, keep in mind that most buyers don’t want to have to make repairs or foot the bill for replacements; they want move-in-ready homes. So it’s in your best interest to either repair or replace your HVAC system as needed.  

profitable tips for seattle home sellers

Flooring upgrades

Are your carpets stained or faded? Is your hardwood discolored or scratched? Is your vinyl flooring warped or damaged? No matter what type of flooring you have, if it’s damaged, having it repaired or replaced pre-listing is a wise idea.  

For example, if you have hardwood floors, they can likely be refinished. Refinishing can make them look like new without the hefty price tag that new hardwood floors often come with.  

Additionally, ceramic tile floors are popular and trending up in Seattle right now. They can give your home a more high-end feel and enhance its visual appeal, while also being durable and easy for the new homeowners to care for. Therefore, they’re a great way to make an impression on potential buyers, whether they view your home in person or online.

Office or flex space

Home offices are more sought after than ever with more people now working from home in Seattle. So making sure your office space is presentable is strongly recommended by industry experts. That might mean removing clutter, improving organization, maximizing natural light, and enhancing lighting and design touches. 

But what if you don’t have a dedicated office space or have already moved out by the time buyers start touring your home? That’s where staging comes in. For example, if you have flex space such as a spare bedroom, your Realtor® can arrange to have it staged as a home office.  

Ultimately, though, whether you show off the office you already have or stage one, highlighting work from home-friendly spaces is smart to attract the broadest set of buyers possible.

Portland-area home after Curbio's pre-listing home improvements.

Backyard upgrades

Backyards are one of Seattle’s most valuable home features and help sellers close deals at nearly 6% above asking price. Curbio works with your agent to ensure that your backyard will catch the eye of as many buyers as possible.  

For example, one upgrade that could be worthwhile is adding a deck. Not only did decks make Redfin’s most valuable list but roof decks, in particular, were trending up going into 2022. Although the average deck installation is a significant expense — ranging from $21,192 to $25,171 — more than 85% of that cost (or more) can be recouped.  

Not to mention that, if your agent partners with Curbio, you don’t have to worry about freeing up cash for your project. We wait until closing to be paid for the work!

Driveway repair or replacement

A cracked, crumbling, or pothole-ridden driveway is not only a visual turnoff for buyers. The rule of thumb is: if more than 25% of your driveway is damaged, opt for resurfacing or replacement. Otherwise, opt for repair. 

What would the payoff be? According to Redfin, homes with driveways sold for approximately 3.6% above asking price in 2021. So making sure your driveway is in good shape is a strategic Seattle home improvement to make right away.  

Of course, one that’s significantly damaged won’t do you any favors as a home seller. So, if yours isn’t currently in good condition, repair, resurfacing or replacement can help you to sell for the best price.

Garage door replacement

Another easy way to improve your home’s appeal and attractiveness is by replacing the garage door. It’s a relatively low-cost project that can have a high return on investment — typically around 98%.  

Not only can it boost your home’s curb appeal but it can also improve security and functionality. And, of course, all three can go a long way in getting your home sold faster and for your ideal selling price.

Exterior updates

Besides replacing your garage door or fixing up your driveway, what other updates could you make to the exterior of your home? One of the best is installing a manufactured stone veneer. This relatively low-cost project can give you a 93% return on investment or more, making it a wise choice for anyone looking for smart Seattle home improvements. 

profitable tips for seattle home sellers

Another great option for increasing your home’s value is replacing the siding. There are several materials to choose from including vinyl and fiber-cement and, depending on which one you choose, you can expect an ROI of between 85.6% and 88.2%. 

However, both projects — veneer installation and siding replacement — typically cost between $10,000 and $25,000. So, if you don’t want to have to free up the cash upfront to make these upgrades, ask your Realtor® about our “fix now, pay later” financial model!

Want to sell faster, for more? Kick it to Curbio

Curbio is here for Realtors® and their clients to make preparing homes for sale easy. We take on any home improvements necessary to get homes sold. Even better? We wait until the house sells to be paid for our work. The last thing you need when you’re getting ready to sell your home is another up-front expense. (Here are some ways to save money during the selling process.) We don’t have any project minimums or maximums and don’t charge any interest or fees. When you work with Curbio, you know you’re getting the best price for the home improvement work. Curbio is entirely turnkey, so you don’t have to lift a finger.  

Let Curbio tackle all of your pre-listing improvements to make your Portland listing shine! Get started by requesting a fast and free estimate today.  

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