There are numerous ways to increase one’s home value, from budget friendly, few hours long projects to gut-everything-down jobs. Even simple projects can make home and yard look great and more appealing to the buyers, and even if you don’t plan on selling your home soon it still feels nice to live in a well maintained space. Lot of projects you can do on your own, but if you’re aiming at more expensive ones, like kitchen remodel, or adding a deck, it would be wise to hire a licensed and insured contractor. I must add, if you have HOA always check first with board of directors and your neighborhood CC&Rs (Declaration of Covenants Conditions and Restrictions) before tackling any major project in your yard or on the exterior of your home, especially if it’s visible from the street. If you do something that’s not permitted like wrong exterior color, different type of fence, etc. your board of directors may require you to redo it according to the neighborhood rules, thus wasting you lot of money and time.
Curb appeal and backyard
First thing we see when we arrive home is our front yard and main entrance/porch. It’s the first impression of our home and of us as homeowners. You can easily increase curb appeal by simply adding new plants and keeping the area clean and watered. I’ll write more about landscaping in my next blog post in February. Other ways to add more curb appeal are painting the front door, adding faux window shutters, window boxes, painting the exterior of your home, and adding the porch. It can add 7-15% to your home value. Here are some links to more ideas:
Backyard improvements can include new plants, paving the walkways, and adding a deck which has 80% return on investment. Also, making your yard more private by adding plants or privacy screens is always nice feature. Trimming the overgrown trees and bushes can add more light to the yard and the home interior. It also makes yard look well kept.
Interior of the home
Kitchen is often the most used room in the home, and it always pays out to do improvements in this area.Experts say if you have enough money to only do renovations in one area in your home, kitchen is the right choice. It has 80-85% return on investment. Just be careful not to over-do it. People rarely need high end chef’s kitchen with six burner stove. Medium priced matching appliances will do the trick. Easiest and cheapest way to spruce up the kitchen would be just changing the faucet and cabinet handles, or/and painting the walls. More expensive and time consuming would be installing backsplash, changing the appliances and countertops, adding an island or peninsula. If you’re not a DIYer it’s best to hire someone to do it for you. You can see some before and after kitchen updates on Hative.com
When it comes to painting the walls, neutral colors are better choice since they are more likely to appeal to larger pool of buyers.
Another improvement that has high return on investment is adding a bedroom. ROI on this project is 70-80%. It can be done by adding square footage if you have enough space on your lot, or converting the attic to bedroom, both of which require permits from your local government. There’s also another solution for this, that saves lot of money, and that’s converting a den or office by adding a closet or simply installing a wardrobe.
Buyers love to see updated bathroom, especially master bath. Easiest way (same as with kitchen) is adding or replacing cabinet handles and changing faucets. Also, replacing wooden medicine cabinet for a mirrored one and painting the walls can really make big impact. Big bath makeovers that include adding a walk-in shower and tiles and changing vanities have around 80% return on investment.
Storage space is always desirable feature for home buyers. Wall shelves in garage, storage space under the stairs or adding a walk-in closet or pantry are just some examples of increasing storage.
Other non-cosmetic things that can pay out later are roof or window replacement on older homes which are pricey, but have 70-85% ROI, as well as electrical and plumbing.
No mater what your budget is you should keep in mind that even smallest changes can make your home look better. If you don’t have any budget for improvements, but need to get your home ready for sale, cleaning and decluterring the space and steam cleaning your carpets will help make your home more appealing to potential buyers.