5 reasons your home isn't selling

Your house is outdated

Homes with outdated kitchens and bathrooms often sit on the market longer or sell at a lower price.

You may need to make some upgrades, but you also have to be realistic with your time and budget. Sinking $30,000 into a new kitchen to boost its appeal probably isn't a good investment.

"Avoid big projects, and do as many small home improvements as you can, especially those you can do on your own with little money," says Erik Reisner, a broker with Mad River Valley Real Estate in Waitsfield, Vermont.

Look for improvements most likely to make your house move-in ready in the eyes of potential buyers, and that will provide the best return for your money.

Remodeling Magazine found that homeowners recoup less than two-thirds of what they spend on improvements when they sell.

The most valuable home improvements include replacing a worn-out front door or dented and faded siding. You won't recoup nearly as much of the cost if you add a sunroom, bathroom or swimming pool.