First impressions make a huge difference when selling a home. One of the best ways to make your house shine is to apply a fresh coat of paint inside and out. New paint gives the home a clean look and tells buyers that the house is in “move-in” condition. It could quickly pay off in the faster sale of your home— possibly at a higher price.

Before putting your house on the market, consider these tips for freshening up your abode with paint:

Select neutral colors
Neutral colors harmonize with almost any décor. For exteriors, keep it simple with white or another neutral color. Now is not the time to awe the neighborhood with your unique taste.

Use the appropriate paint
Pick the type of paint that’s right for the job. Exterior projects require different paint than interior work. For example, paint manufacturers offer many paints for special uses such as covering vinyl siding and protecting high-traffic interior spaces.

Prepare the surface
A properly sanded and cleaned surface will make paint look better and last longer. Wash the walls with water and detergent, patch cracks and nail holes with spackle, and sand the walls smooth, as appropriate.

Finish all the painting
Your house shouldn’t look like a work in progress, so finish any project before your home goes on the market.