One of the most important things to keep in mind when considering any home improvement project is to not go overboard. Most appraisers have stories of homeowners irate over the fact that the special remodeling job they performed added zero value to their home. The value of your home is partially determined by the value of your neighbor’s homes, so don’t make improvements that bring your home’s value significantly over the general value of other homes in your neighborhood.
Be sure to check out other homes in your neighborhood to see what projects would best suit your house. Do you only have 1.5 baths but most homes in your neighborhood have 2.5? Then a bathroom addition may be your best bet. If homes in your neighborhood have great curb appeal, painting the exterior and other outside improvements may get you the most bang for your buck.
Percentage of Investment Recouped
The following information is from a national real estate marketing publication. It should be used only as a general guide to ranking the importance of these improvements. Many factors will affect the appraiser's opinion of these improvements including, location, value range of home, market trends, age of home and quality of improvement.
A kitchen update can reward a seller with a sizable payback. Just remember though; splurging on fancy finishing materials or sophisticated equipment may cut into your profit. Keep it simple.
|100%||Revitalized Lawn and Garden
A verdant lawn and a modest but colorful flowerbed will entice potential buyers. The few hundred dollars invested may yield several thousands in profit.
Especially if it is energy efficient, such as a gas-powered model, a fireplace holds the promise of cozy family gatherings around the warmth of the hearth.
All it takes is a simple 5x9 foot extra bath to make mornings more civilized for most families. But don't count on a return on extras like a heat lamp or whirlpool tub.
For the most attractive return of your investment dollars later on, the added room should be today's popular family room or a third bedroom.
A master bath is on many buyer's list, so invest here. If you own only one bath, install two sinks or a double vanity to handle the morning crowd.
|70%||Expanded Master Suite
To keep costs down, try to find extra space to create this wish list item by combining existing rooms and spaces. Heavy structural work entailed by adding square feet diminishes your return.
Outdoor living space is a desirable asset no matter where the locale. No maintenance decking material leaves lots more leisure time, too.
Sprucing up tired siding, trim, etc., can take years off the look of an older house.
You can expect to recoup more of your investment if you make sure the renovation does not detract from the aesthetics of your home. It is especially attractive as an extra bedroom in a small house.
This is a great way to gain added living space without building a costly addition. If the basement has an access door to the outdoors, the project becomes more valuable.
Replace it only if your old system is dysfunctional. Depending upon a buyer's priorities, a new energy efficient furnace may or may not be a selling advantage.
|35%||New Windows and Doors
Buyers appreciate changes that improve the look of a house, so attractive new French doors, for example, may be a plus. Energy efficient units are an ecological boom, but may be a resale bust.
Don't go overboard to blend it into your home's architectural style. Its desirability increases if you live in a part of the country with a harsh climate.
Unless you live where the sun always shines, such as Southern California, this luxury item can detract from your resale profit.