If you're looking to sell your home in the near future, it's best to channel your resources into projects that will show potential buyers that you have a soundly built home that is loved and cared for. Trelora encourages you to do a thorough assessment of your home before listing to identify upgrades that increase market value and provide the greatest return on investment (ROI).
While remodeling the kitchen or adding an extra bathroom are surefire ways to increase your home’s market value, if you’ve already started looking for another home you probably don’t have time to get into a lengthy remodel. In that case, we recommend focusing on the following 8 home improvements that will quickly increase market value.
Exterior Home Improvements
Giving potential homebuyers a good first impression starts with your home’s exterior. Making sure the garage door, siding, roof, front door and windows are in top shape is key. A garage door replacement currently has an 88.4% ROI, and you will regain 101.4% of your investment when you install a steel front door, according to Remodeling magazine’s 2015 Cost vs. Value report. According to the same report, vinyl siding replacement will earn you an average 80.7% ROI, while installing new windows will get you from 72-79% of your money back, depending on the material you choose. Wood windows prove to be a better investment than vinyl.
If your budget allows for it, hire professional landscapers to give your lawn and garden a complete makeover. Otherwise, clean the front and back yards of any debris, trim trees and shrubs, cut the lawn, and reseed if needed. Planting colorful flowers and adding a fresh layer of mulch will polish off the look. Consider placing solar-powered lights along the walkway – they are inexpensive and easy to install, in addition to being a functional addition to your home’s exterior.
While you may not have the time or money for a complete overhaul, even smaller kitchen upgrades will add value to your home. Painting, replacing vinyl flooring with laminate or tile, updating appliances, and re-staining cabinets are great ways to update your kitchen. If you can’t afford top-dollar upgrades like granite countertops, laminate is an inexpensive and durable alternative.
A 2013 Realtor.org survey reports that the majority of home buyers look for more closets and bigger storage spaces. Assess the layout of your home to see if it’s reasonable to add a coat closet or kitchen pantry. If you want to skip the construction, see if you can add extra shelving or cabinets in the bathroom to serve as a linen closet.
If your neighbors’ homes have an average of 2.5 baths and yours has only one, adding a second would be a smart move. But that might not be feasible for those who are looking to sell right away. In that case, you should update your existing bathrooms to remediate eyesores like peeling paint, dingy cabinets, and hard water stains. If you have wallpaper that dates the room, now’s the time to remove and repaint. Installing an exhaust fan is another quick and easy way to add appeal.
A National Association of Homebuilders report revealed that 94% of home buyers look for energy-saving appliances while hunting for homes. These appliances are not only good for the environment, they can save consumers up to 15% on their energy bills. Dishwashers, washing machines and dryers, windows, roofs, and water heaters are just a few items that can be upgraded for efficiency.
Many people prefer hardwood flooring to carpets because they are visually appealing and easy to clean. Ripping up that old carpet in your living room or bedroom can instantly modernize the space. Click-lock hardwood flooring is affordable and easy to install for those on a tight budget.
Immediately fix leaks and make structural repairs. A musty smell is a sign that you’ve got water leaking into the foundation, and if your basement floods occasionally you should take care of this before focusing on aesthetic repairs to your home. The basement is an indicator of a house’s health, and you don’t want prospective buyers to detect any signs of illness. In 2013, 89% of homebuyers bought a home with a separate laundry room, and many are turned off by a washer and dryer in the basement. Moving the washer and dryer upstairs is an improvement that is often overlooked, but can make a real difference.
Making home improvements is essential to maximizing your profits, but don’t overdo it. Study the real estate market in your area to understand how your home compares to others in your neighborhood. Surrounding homes affect your house’s market value, and at a certain point you will get less return on your investment. You’re on the right track if your remodeling plan prioritizes the basic functional repairs over luxury features.