What Home Improvements Increase The Value of a Home?


There are a number of home improvements that increase the value of a home when it is time sell a home. While few home improvements have a large impact on the value of a home on their own, the cumulative effect of numerous home improvements can raise the value of a home and help sell a home more quickly than similar homes that have not been improved. Some of the home improvements that have the best bang for the buck are not as obvious as one might think.

There are certain home improvements that are worth doing for your own comfort while living in a home, regardless of how they impact the value of your home. There are also home improvements that are worth doing because they pay off when you sell your home or may help you sell your home more quickly since buyers often do not want to have a lot of home improvement projects to tackle when they move in. Choosing which home improvements to pursue depends largely upon how long you intend to remain in a home, their cost, and the impact they will have in the real estate market when it comes time to sell your home.

Keep in mind that home improvements not only have potential monetary benefits, but can also pay off in regards to how quickly a home sells once it is put up for sale on the real estate market. If you want to be able to sell your home quickly, as most sellers do, home improvements can greatly enhance your chances for a quick sale, so you can move and get on with your life.

How Home Improvements Pay Off

Homeowners need to understand how the home improvements they perform on their home pay off when it comes time to sell their home. Home buyers typically have a check list of things they are looking for in a home. The more items that they can check off as existing in and around a home, the more likely they are going to make an offer to buy the home. If a home has everything they want, or just about everything they want, they are more likely to aggressively pursue the purchase of the home, which means they will likely settle for a price that is at or close to the asking price. This is how home improvements pay off when you sell your home.

Without any home improvements, the prospective buyer may either never make an offer or make a lowball offer, with the understanding that they will have to put money into the home to make it the way they want it. The home improvements are likely to be the difference between getting full or close to full value for your home or settling for less than full value, which could mean $10,000s or even $100,000s in difference between your offering price and the final selling price.

Front Exterior Home Improvements That Pay Off

Most home buyers form a strong initial opinion about a home they are considering purchasing based upon their initial view of the home from the curb and sidewalk, as they first approach the home. According to Remodeling Magazine, home improvements that improve a home’s “curb appeal” can be the wisest way to spend home improvement money. For example, according to Remodeling Magazine, 80% of the cost of replacing a home’s siding and 70% of the cost of window replacements is usually recouped at the time of sale. By comparison, Remodeling Magazine found that only 60% of the cost of a major kitchen remodeling is typically recouped at the time of sale.

Replacing a front door and front facing garage door can also have a positive impact on a home’s curb appeal and on the value of a home. In fact, Remodeling Magazine found that the only home improvement that had a 100% return on investment was replacement of a front door with a new steel door. Inexpensive front exterior home improvements, such as painting and cleaning the front entranceway and cleaning up the landscaping in the front yard, are also ways to improve a home’s curb appeal that can increase the value of a home.

Home Improvements: Remodeled Kitchen

Interior Home Improvements That Pay Off

Keep in mind that the two most important places in a home that buyers focus on are the bathrooms and kitchen. Many buyers will overlook home improvements that may be necessary in other rooms, but having up to date bathrooms and a modern kitchen is very important when you are trying to get buyers to agree to the asking price for your home. Even if you do not have a lot of money to work with, updating cabinet hardware and painting or re-facing cabinets in the bathrooms and kitchen can improve their value. If you are considering a major kitchen renovation, consider knocking down walls (if possible) to make your kitchen and nearby living areas an open floor plan, as this configuration is very popular with families that have children, as it makes it easy for parents to work in the kitchen and keep an eye on their children, and generally makes a home feel larger.

Since it is difficult at the time of sale to recoup 100% of the money that homeowners put into home improvements, cost conscious homeowners may want to focus on less expensive home improvements that are cosmetic, but make a big improvement in the interior appearance of the home. For example, a new coat of paint can work wonders in a room that is dated; just remember to use neutral colors, so you do not scare off potential buyers. Other relatively inexpensive home improvements that pay off when you sell your home include updating hardware on doors, such as hinges and knobs. New paint and new door hardware can dramatically improve the interior appearance of a home, without costing a fortune. For those inclined to spend a little more money on home improvements, the installation of crown molding in rooms or new doors should be considered to improve the aesthetic appeal of a home’s interior.

Home Improvements That Pay Off That Are Often Overlooked

There are other home improvements that pay off when it comes time to sell, but are often overlooked by homeowners. For example, if you live in an area that is desirable for young families, consider fully fencing in your back yard. Parents with young ones are typically looking for a safe fenced in back yard that their children can play in. If you offer a fenced in back yard, then families with children may be more likely to meet your asking price when you sell your home.

Adding or improving a deck or patio also can be a worthwhile home improvement that can increase the chances that you will receive your asking price when you sell your home. People like to have easy access to the exterior of their home for relaxing, dining, and entertaining friends. Adding or improving a deck or patio might tip your home in a buyer’s favor and get them to pay full price.

Another example of an often overlooked home improvement is storage space. Just about everyone, families and singles included, has lots of things they need to store. If you can create additional clean and dry storage space in your home, in places such as the attic or basement, buyers will look favorably on this home improvement and may be willing to pay more for your home.

Come Up With a List For Home Improvements That Pay Off

Since money is often the limiting factor when a homeowner is contemplating home improvements, it is a good idea to draw up a list of desired home improvements, so you can implement the home improvements based on which ones make the best sense from a cost versus benefit perspective. If you plan on living in your home for a number of years, more expensive home improvements may be worthwhile for your living comfort. If you are looking to sell your home soon, home improvements that are more cosmetic in nature might be the best route to take financially. Just keep in mind what a typical seller will be looking for when they view your home and what you found deficient in your home when you brought it. Using a list to implement home improvements that make sense based on your particular circumstances is the best way to make home improvements that will pay off when you sell your home.

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