When it comes time to sell your home, you’ll need to decide which types of repairs and improvements you’ll want to make before it’s listed for sale. Should you update your kitchen? Apply fresh paint to the living room? Plant flowers? Clean or replace your worn carpet? Your real estate agent can help you determine which repairs may be the most important in appealing to the most prospective home buyers.

In general, many buyers don’t like buying a home that has a number of small maintenance problems, such as leaky faucets or a hole in a wall that needs to be patched with drywall. Many home buyers want a home that’s in or nearly in ‘move-in’ condition. In addition, a number of repair issues may make prospective buyers wonder what else is wrong with your home. That’s why in many cases, you may want to consider addressing these types of issues when you’re getting your property ready to sell. Many buyers make offers contingent upon an inspection, so you may be asked to fix some maintenance issues anyway.

Larger issues, such as a furnace or roof that needs replacement, can make for a tougher decision. You may get only a portion of the investment in a large repair or renovation back when you actually sell your property. For information on the typical return on investment for renovation projects, check out Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value report.

Another issue to keep in mind is what prospective home buyers see first. First impressions matter. A tidy and well-kept front yard, front door area and interior entry way can go a long way toward making a great first impression. Inexpensive steps, such as planting some flowering plants and painting the front door, for example, can make a big difference.

And don’t forget: If you’re thinking of work that involves flooring or paint, don’t pick the colors and materials that you and your family like; you’re moving! Make sure your upgrades are neutral and appealing to the greatest number of buyers. White or off-white is a good choice for wall paint, for example. Your agent can give you a good idea of what type of flooring, cabinetry, paint and other upgrades are the most popular with home buyers right now.