How to Improve the Value of Your Home
Your house is probably your biggest asset and will remain your biggest asset throughout your life. It’s also the one most likely to appreciate even if you do nothing to it. However, a little work goes a long way and a few minor tweaks here and there could greatly improve the value of your home.
Whether you’re selling your home this month, this year, next year or in 5 years’ time, these tips can help. And because you never know when you may need to sell, they’re also recommended even if you have no intention of moving.
Make it Smart
Smart homes are the future. Smart thermostats, plugs, and lights look infinitely more appealing than old-fashioned fixtures that are rusting, gathering dust or falling out of their sockets.
Antique is good, and if you have a rustic period property there’s some benefit to keeping those original fixtures and simply renovating and improving.
But “antique” doesn’t include dated fixtures from the 1970s or 1980s and the appeal is lost if they’re barely functioning and have lost all practicality. Give your home a modern makeover and you’ll increase first impressions and ensure your home caters more to those aged 40 and under.
Get Rid of the Carpets
If you have carpets, it’s time to get rid. Modern homebuyers want wooden floors. They’re easier to maintain, they look sleeker, cleaner—they’re just better. Sure, they can be a little annoying if you have pets and you’ll forever be listening to the pitter-patter of paws, but the pros outweigh the cons.
Wooden floors can be expensive, but there are many alternatives that will cost you a fraction of the price and look just as impressive. These cheaper options should also give you a better return on your investment. Antique wooden flooring could set you back thousands of dollars and may not increase your home’s value by the same amount.
Fix Your Curb Appeal
Curb appeal is a term used to describe the external aesthetic of your home and includes everything from your doors and windows to your yard. A good curb appeal can bring more people into your home and should also increase the asking price. More viewers also mean more offers, which keeps the competition high and ensures you get a good price.
You can increase your curb appeal in many different ways:
- Improve Your Garage Door: That rusty old door isn’t doing you any favors. It needs to go. Luckily, even if you splash the cash on a brand-new door you should get a return on your investment. Many experts believe that a new garage door can give you a return of between 50% and 90%, as it boosts security and improves curb appeal.
- Trim Trees: If you have any trees towering over your house, get them trimmed. They could be damaging your curb appeal and worrying prospective bidders.
- Stone Veneer: A stone veneer can massively improve your curb appeal and make your home look infinitely more expensive than it actually is. It’s a low-cost way to improve your home’s exterior and should provide a good return on investment.
- Landscape: Keep your grass mown, hedges trimmed, and flowers blooming. If you don’t have a flower bed, then prepare those green fingers and start growing.
- Power Wash: Get rid of ingrained dirt on the exterior of your home and your driveway with a power wash. A few minutes is all it takes to give everything a fresh, new look.
- Get Rid of the Toys: If you have a lot of toys cluttering your driveway or yard, it’s time to store them away. The same goes for old furniture and anything else that doesn’t belong on a lawn or driveway.
Renovate Your Basement
Is your basement unfinished, have you been using it as a storage room? If so, you could be wasting prime real estate.
Renovate that room and the value of your home will increase. Buyers will start thinking of that additional space as a games room, a bedroom, or an office space, as opposed to a big mess that requires more time and effort than they can afford. For buyers with big families and very little time, it could be enough to convince them to buy.
Create an Inviting Entrance
First impressions are huge. You’ve already improved the curb appeal, now you need to influence how buyers feel when they step through your front door. Get rid of old, dirty welcome mats and carpets, remove junk furniture, rethink overloaded coat stands—less is more.
Add Decking and a Seating Area
Every buyer likes to think that their new home will usher in a new lifestyle, one where they have more free time and are more willing to throw parties and have drinks with friends. If you have an outside area where they can sit and have food and drinks, you’ll give them exactly what they’re looking for.
Once the reality of the move sets in and life gets back to normal, all those hopes will disappear and the outside area will be left practically untouched, but by that time you will have sold the house and moved on, so it doesn’t matter!
Add Recessed Lights
Recessed lights can make your home seem brighter, lighter, and more spacious. It also adds to the modern aesthetic and if you have smart switches and thermostats as well, that effect will be magnified. These lights are cheap, easy to install, and could add significant value to your hone.
Renovate Your Kitchen
Kitchens can be deal breakers for many buyers. They want something modern, clean, and easy to maintain, but for most sellers, the kitchen is one of the least appealing rooms in the home. It’s one that often receives the least attention, because while homeowners are buying brand-new televisions and smart technology for their living rooms and new beds for their bedrooms, they stick with the same old counters and equipment they bought when they first moved in.
You don’t need to spend big. Just make sure everything is spotless (without excess appliances and junk lying everywhere) give it a fresh lick of paint, add some tiling if necessary and redo your countertops.
You don’t need to be an art lover to appreciate some stylish paintings or pieces, but it may increase the value of your home. Swap old family portraits for warm, colorful prints and paintings. The idea is to create a space that is warm and inviting, with paintings that set the scene and draw the eye, as opposed to endless old photographs of you and your family.
Summary: A New Perspective
It’s hard to see your house through objective eyes. The dirty walls, chipped paint, messy hallways—it’s all normal to you so it’s hard to see past the mess. It can help, therefore, to walk a friend through the house and ask for their complete honesty.
Ask for their opinions on what needs to be changed, what they don’t like, and what they would prefer to see. If they’re honest, they’ll tell you what you need to hear. You can use their advice to change what prospective buyers see when they view your home.