When it comes to reality programming, HGTV is a popular one that has viewers glued to their sets episode after episode for every home transformation.

Local real estate expert Daniel McCarthy of DeLex Realty actually believes HGTV can portray a myth to homeowners and those who want to sell their home that remodeling is a must-do, when in fact it's not.

McCarthy advises homeowners and those preparing to put their homes on the market by dispelling the myth that homeowners need to completely gut or remodel their homes prior to putting them on the market.

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"The fact is that the overwhelming value of a home is going to be determined by its location and size of the home, not necessarily what's inside. You cannot, for example, remodel your home into a different neighborhood," McCarthy said.

McCarthy does admit that a remodel that involves adding square footage to the home can be beneficial, but advises homeowners to be aware that the addition may not provide the return on investment needed to make it a worthwhile endeavor.

Another item for homeowners to keep in mind is that upgrades will eventually become outdated.

"The best thing a homeowner can do is locate the top five selling prices for homes within the same square footage and bedroom quantity, then find out what upgrades those properties have," McCarthy suggests. "Instead of a total remodel, you may find just some upgraded appliances will be enough. Or instead of an entire landscape overhaul, a simple paint job may serve you better."

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While adding to square footage isn't always an option, McCarthy recommends getting a home inspection done and fixing any problems found prior to putting the home on the market. He insists that cleaning and de-cluttering can also work wonders to make a home look as fresh as possible.

"Know the problems before the buyers do and present the home in the best light," he adds, noting that cleaning and de-cluttering are two of his three "non-negotiables" when it comes to listing a home.

The third? Depersonalize the home by removing family photos or memorabilia so potential buyers can envision their personal items in the home instead. For more information about listing a home with DeLex Realty, please visit www.delexelite.com.

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