Contrary to popular belief, not every home improvement project is valuable to your home’s resale. Understanding where to invest in home improvement projects and where to avoid spending is important to maximizing the value of your home, especially if that is one of your primary goals in home improvement.
Murray Lampert shares some of the best ways to spend your home improvement budget in order to increase your home’s resale value.
The National Association of Home Builders reports that adding just another half bathroom can add as much as 10.5% to the value of the home. A full bathroom? As much as 20%. Buyers are becoming increasingly concerned with the number of bathrooms they are purchasing, along with bedrooms. In some regions, you can recoup up to 67% of what you spend to remodel or add a new bathroom.
In the past decade, the kitchen has transformed from a single-purpose room to the main hub of the home. Nearly any kitchen improvement that you make to will add value to your home, even if it’s as simple as adding a fresh coat of paint. Upgrading appliances, adding custom cabinetry, and improving lighting are just a few mid-level kitchen enhancements that can seriously increase your home’s value.
Impressing prospective home buyers starts with enhancing your home’s curb appeal. To help your home deliver a lasting first impression, consider hiring a landscape architect to augment both your front and back yards to provide a major facelift to your entire outdoor living space. Failing to properly maintain your home’s landscape and exterior can decrease its value by 10%!
Outdated plumbing, heating, sewer, and electrical can be a major deal breaker when it comes to selling your home. These basic necessities may not be much to look at, but they certainly influence a buyer’s decision. When it comes to a home, form truly follows function — nobody wants to deal with the nightmare of major infrastructure problems. Pay attention to any issues in these areas that could affect future buyers negatively.
As a bonus, improving your home’s internal systems will help lower utility bills and conserve energy.
A Finished Basement
Transforming your basement square footage into livable space is a smart way to increase property value without the expense of a full-scale home addition. Basements can be transformed into an extra living area, game room, or even a children’s play area. Even if you only convert part of your basement into a living area, you’ll still be adding value and enjoyment to your home.
Important: Whether you finish your basement or not, be sure you have a properly maintained sump pump, along with a battery backup. These two essential appliances insure against devastating water damage in the event of a flood.
For every 1,000 square feet you add to your home, you increase its value by ~3.3%. When that extra square footage comes in the form of another bedroom, that value goes up to 4%. Another great option if you want to add some square footage is to add a first-floor laundry room (opposed to one in the basement), as laundry rooms that are only accessibly by stairs can decrease a home’s value by 2%.
You don’t always need to take on large-scale, high-cost projects to increase the value of your home. Other modifications like adding more storage options, upgrading alarm systems, installing built-in wine coolers, home theater systems, and spa-like bathroom features can all elevate the sophistication and value of your home.
As with all investments, carefully weigh any home improvement projects before starting them. Decide what matters most to you while you live there and what will give you the best return when the time comes to sell the home.