By Esther Steinfeld, The Blinds Gal
Regardless of the fact that every home has them, blinds and shades are often an afterthought in people’s home improvement efforts. Blinds and shades are often grouped with paint, roofing, flooring, and other once-in-a-lifetime purchases because most people think that a) custom window treatments are too expensive and b) they don’t make a big impact. Believe me, this is not the case. Ask Interior Designers and Realtors alike, and they’ll tell you that stylish and durable new window treatments not only make an impact, but they increase a home’s resale value significantly. Blind are becoming more important to the resale process, especially in a shallow sales market. You wouldn’t walk into an interview with your hair disheveled, would you? Then don’t let potential buyers walk into your home with saggy, inoperable blinds. It’s an instant turn-off. Consider these steps when you’re redecorating:
In high-traffic rooms, like living rooms and kitchens, choose real wood plantation shutters. They are often a bigger investment than standard mini blinds; however, shutters are considered furniture for your windows and make an impressive statement. If you cannot swing the price tag, fauxwood shutters are a great option. White is by far the most popular and versatile color. If you are in resale mode, opt for classic white instead of a unique wood stain.
Insulating window treatments are also selling points. Light filtering double and triple-cell honeycomb shades, as well as shutters, are excellent insulators and reduce detrimental energy loss. The r-value of cellular shades is relatively high. They will allow light to filter in instead of the sun’s heat, and in the winter they will trap heat inside. Again, stick to neutral colors so they next homeowner’s décor matches them. Some honeycomb shades even allow you to file for a tax rebate because of the amount they save in energy costs.
Hang neutral-colored or sheer draperies with the intention of leaving them when you move out. Again, the extra incentive for the homeowner is that as soon as they move in, their home will look put together.
Replace any blinds with broken or missing slats, blinds and shades that no longer operate correctly, or have noticeable tears or dings. Even a shutter that is no longer operable should be replaced. Dust your window treatments well before potential buyers come over. This mini-blind cleaner from Ace Hardware is machine washable, and cleans six slats at once. It’s a paltry $5.99, which is worth the investment, I’d say.
Don’t let the Joneses outdo you. Choose window treatments that are functional and beautiful, and explain to possible purchasers that they will be getting plenty of bang for their buck. When people are approaching and touring your home, keep blinds down, but tilted open. If you have shades, raise them partially. Light will filter through naturally and put your window treatments on display simultaneously.
For help getting your home ready for market, visit Blinds.com or call (800) 505-1905 to speak to a Certified Design Consultant.