Landing a Sale

The experts help a couple sell their home so they can buy a new one with land.

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Hide CaptionShow CaptionThis couple wants to sell their home and find one with lots of land but first they need a little help getting their home ready to put on the market.
Mary and Roy Marquez are ready to sell their current place in search of a house with land. They have already sold a lot of their furniture, so the Designed to Sell team sets out to fill the space with life and our homeowners' pockets with cash.

Real estate Donna Freeman kicks off the assessment process, with an examination of the home's exterior, which she thinks is very boring. The peeling paint on the porch bench is not exactly inviting, she adds. But around back she finds a potential diamond in the rough in the courtyard. Inside, she is equally unimpressed, noting that the purpose of some of the rooms isn't clear and there are awkward furniture arrangements.

Designer Lisa LaPorta agrees with Freeman and signs on to get Mary and Roy Marquez in the real-estate race by outlining her plan for the $2,000 budget. Her focus will be on the courtyard, the living room and the kitchen.

Step 1: Fill 'er up. Furnish vacant spaces so house hunters could imagine themselves living there.

Step 2: Open wide. Eliminate closed-off areas so buyers won't feel claustrophobic.

Step 3: Let bygones be bygones. Banish outdated items to the past to give the home a more modern feel.

Carpenters Steve Hanneman and Brooks Utley lead the way.