Nail that sale: Joe and Jeannie Leocha

This couple in Fairfax, Va., faces a sagging market and needs to get more aggressive with their marketing.

Smart cosmetic fixes
A finished basement is worth more than a below-ground bedroom: Stagers took out the bed and moved in den-like furniture.
Smart cosmetic fixes
Of course you hate to spend money on a home you are trying to sell. But a few targeted investments to make the house look better can pay off in a faster sale or a better price.

The Leochas' bathrooms are outdated, for instance, so Moe suggests refinishing the cabinets, installing new light fixtures and updating the knobs and faucets for a more modern feel. Cost: $200 to $400 per bathroom.

If you have a discerning eye, you can figure out the most effective changes to make yourself. Or you can hire a professional stager: A consultation might cost $200 to $400; if the stager executes the plan, expect to pay between $1,500 and $6,000, depending on the work involved.
The problem Marketing Move-in condition Smart cosmetic fixes Make it vanilla Price it right Give extras
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