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One of the most popular spots Canadians enjoy congregating within the home is the kitchen. If you’ve decided it’s time to sell your home, giving your kitchen an update may help you sell faster and for a price you’ll be happy with.

Following are seven ideas that may help you update the space where you’ve likely made some great memories—and where a new family will want to do the same:

Simple, neutral colour scheme. It’s great that you’ve put your own creative stamp on your kitchen. Maybe you’ve painted the walls a bright ochre, but that won’t serve you well when you go to sell. Neutral—and that doesn’t necessarily mean white—walls, countertops, floors, cabinets and appliances are more apt to appeal to everyone.

Open the space up. If you’ve socked away some funds for an update prior to selling, opening up the kitchen is a great idea, but only if it’s structurally feasible. Most everyone prefers open concept living today; however, keep ROI in mind as this could be a costly update.

Add some “wow.” Nothing impresses a buyer more than those extra little touches. How about adding a pantry? Under counter lighting not only adds ambience, but is practical, as well. New hardware on the cabinets will surely be noticed, while extra storage space in the way of an island or extra drawers would also give the kitchen extra points. You might even want to spend a little extra on an updated light fixture.

Put in some granite. Nothing pulls a kitchen together like countertops, and granite is not only functional, but beautiful. Granite comes in all price points, making it easy to find something that will fit within your budget.

Go for the designer backsplash. A backsplash in a kitchen can make a positive statement. Glass mosaic or a blend of glass and tile can leave a wonderful impression on a prospective buyer. Quality materials like stone, marble or travertine are also good choices.

Stay away from extremes. You don’t have to outfit your kitchen with $20,000 cabinets for it to look stellar. By making practical choices and splurging on a key item or two, your kitchen will be the envy of all prospective buyers. Better yet, you won’t have drained your wallet in the process.

Have a chat with your REALTOR®. No one knows the neighbourhood better than your real estate salesperson. He or she will know about kitchen must-haves, what entices buyers, and what may make them want to walk away.

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