Surprising factors that increase home value

Deciding how much your home is worth is based on many different factors. Most of them are well-known and understood, such as the home’s condition, state of maintenance, upgrades and improvement. But there are a few other things that can also boost a home’s value and sale price that just might surprise you, including:

The Starbucks factor

How close you are to your favorite Frappuccino can actually have an affect on your home’s value. A 2015 Zillow report found that homes near a Starbucks generally appreciated more than all other homes. That same report also showed that the Starbucks affect was most prevalent in the metro areas of Boston, Philadelphia and Washington DC – good news for those of us who live here in Arlington, VA.

How close you are to a city

Living in Northern Virginia gives homeowners another value boost due to proximity to Washington, DC. According to a recent study, if you own a home in a major metropolitan area in America, you’re most likely sitting on a significant (and rapidly appreciating) financial asset. The average urban home is now worth 35 percent more than the average suburban home. Since 2012, the median home value in urban areas have increased by 54 percent, while in suburban areas the median home value is up 38 percent.

Blue kitchens and bathrooms

We know that color can play a significant factor in attracting, or repelling, prospective buyers. But the common practice of sticking to whites and neutrals may not always be the best choice. According to Zillow’s 2017 Paint Color Analysis, which examined more than 32,000 photos from sold homes around the country, homes that used blue or blue-grey paint colors in kitchens and bathrooms sold for thousands more than similar homes that used white paint.

Cleanliness leads to more money too

There’s sorta clean – and then there’s sparkling clean. Making an effort to keep a home for sale clean, uncluttered and mess-free has a lot of power to boost both its value and potential for a quick and lucrative sale. A very clean house helps homeowners spot and stay on top of maintenance issues before they become expensive. Buyers trust that the home is well-maintained and that issues such as mold or damage aren’t hiding behind any clutter. Also, buyers with sensitivities or allergies will value a home that is spotless much more than a dingy, cluttered home.

Front door first impressions

Don’t underestimate the power of a first impression. Right after curb appeal, the next big impression potential buyers will have of a home happens at the front door. In the time it takes to unlock and enter a home, usually less than 10 seconds, people have subconsciously formed their opinion of the home’s value. An attractive paint color is a good start, and don’t forget to clean the entire door inside and out. Make sure the doorbell or intercom is clean and works well. Attractive lighting, simple fresh greenery in pots or seating with colorful outdoor cushions (again, very clean) are also attractive and welcoming touches.

Accessible for all ages

By 2040, there are expected to be almost 80 million seniors accounting for 21 percent of the population. Many home on the market aren’t equipped to accommodate the aging, so those with walk-in showers and master suites on the main floor or features such as comfort-height toilets will have a great perceived value and attract a wider range of buyers.

If you live in Arlington, VA and are planning on selling your home, you’re one of the lucky ones with the access and ability to take advantage of all I’ve shared with you here. For more information about selling your home, increasing its value, or setting the right price that will attract buyers while giving you the maximum profit, give me a call at (703) 593-6320 or email me at