According to Business Insider, the best time to sell is slowly approaching. In early May, houses sell faster and for more money than any other time of the year.

If you’re eager to get your home “real estate ready” in hopes of taking advantage of the bustling market, but don’t have a big budget for trendy upgrades, don’t worry.  We have you covered. Here’s seven budget-friendly tips to help increase the value of your home for little cost.

 1. Clean and declutter

For the small price of some good cleaning products and an honest day’s work, cleaning, removing excess furniture, uncluttering kitchen counters and closets, can make a decent impact on your home’s value. According to HomeGain’s annual survey, which collects feedback from mortgage and real estate professionals nationwide, cleaning and decluttering your home can give you the biggest return on investment (ROI): about 403 percent. Not bad for some elbow grease.

2. Maximize light

Homes that are brighter and lighter usually sale faster. Why? Lighting can be a natural mood booster. Plus, according to a HomeGain survey, lighting noticeably enhances a home’s appeal. Doing little things like adding new light switches, replacing old bulbs and ceiling fixtures with newer ones and cleaning windows can make a big difference to a prospective buyer.

3.  Give the entryway a face-lift 

US News & World Report story found that by replacing an outdated entry-way door (or even adding fresh paint) can deliver one of the highest ROIs compared to other home improvement projects. Doing other low-hanging items like mowing your lawn, adding fresh mulch to garden beds, lining your deck or terrace with potted plants can sometimes be the quick-fix face-lift a home needs to sell quickly.

4. Make quick kitchen updates

Real estate experts say the kitchen is among the most important rooms to upgrade. Luckily, when it comes to spiffing it up, you don’t need to spend a lot installing high-end counter tops or stainless steel appliances. Simple things like refinishing or repainting old cabinets, replacing outdated hinges and drawer handles can drastically transform your kitchen’s appearance. And it can be done for less than a $100.

5. Spruce up bathrooms

Installing new tile or marble in your bathroom is a big ticket item, but doing smaller, more cost effective upgrades can be almost as impactful. For instance, installing new fixtures, steam cleaning or re-grouting the shower, replacing old bulbs and adding a new mirror can make a drastic difference and for not much dough.

6. Use light-colored paint

According to Trulia, one of the easiest ways to transform a room involves a can of neutral-colored paint. Taking away any dark or drab walls and giving them a fresh cream or white coat, gives homebuyers “a clean palette” to envision their life there.

7. Go green on energy 

 The Appraisal Journal estimates that cutting your home’s energy costs can add 20 times the annual savings to the value of a property.  So for instance, if you installed some energy efficient appliances that save $500 a year ($500 a year X 20 = $10,000), this could translate to an added $10,000 in your home’s estimated value. Even insulating your attic or caulking around doors and windows can conserve tons of energy in heating and air conditioning costs and be a potential draw for home-buyers.

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