Thinking about updating before the sale?

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If your home hasn’t had a facelift in a while, you should take a long hard look at it before putting it on the market. Many times, homeowners will update their kitchen or bathroom as a way of breathing new life into your property and increasing its value. But there are a few steps you need to take before applying hammer to nail.

First, take a step back and evaluate the spaces you have. Have a plan in place prior to starting: Draw or diagram out your room showing where everything will end up. Many times, your local big box hardware store can help you with this at no cost and print you out something you can work from. This will prevent costly headaches and your contractors will love you!

Finding the right person to complete the project is extremely important. Talk to your friends and neighbors and search the internet for a reliable professional remodeler. Many times your local city hall will have a list of approved village contractors who are insured and registered to complete work within your town.

Based on the amount of work you are looking to complete, you may need to hire a few more people besides the contractor. Some projects will call for a designer or an architect along with an engineer. If you are looking to add rooms or levels to your home, that’s when an architect and engineer would need to be involved along. The designer would be contacted if you need help re-imagining a room.

I always recommend seeking three bids whenever hiring a contractor. Be sure each bid represents the exact work to be completed so there are no arguments with your contractors down the road.

And don’t just pick a contractor based on the lowest price. It may seem good for your pocketbook, but it may cost you more in the end. Those contractors may not be fully qualified or experienced to complete the project properly. An unqualified contractor could open up a can of worms later on when your buyer hires a home inspector to inspect your property.

If you want a beautiful home to show off to potential buyers, do your homework first!

To contact me, call 708-583-8300, email or visit

About Giuseppe Zerillo

Giuseppe Zerillo is the managing broker and owner of Zerillo Realty Inc. He is active on many boards, serving as village trustee of Harwood Heights and corporate secretary for Casa Italia. In 2011, he received the IANU Foundation's 2011 David Award for outstanding promise in the field of real estate, and in 2012 he was honored by the Illinois State Crime Commission for his community outreach. Constantly seeking opportunities to give back, he donates to several charities and raises money for children with disabilities.

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