The Best Remodeling Projects to Raise the Value of Your Home
What renovations should a prospective seller do to their home?
By Liz Boucher
If you are like most homeowners, you probably view your home as your most important investment. Diligent homeowners often treat their homes like stock portfolios or savings accounts and always try to add value to their properties. While there are many ways to increase the value of a home, one of the most utilized methods for homeowners is the remodeling project.
However, despite the remodeling successes of many homeowners, remodeling a home is not always a guarantee of added value or increased interest from potential buyers. Hence, homeowners may want to take care in how they renovate their homes, especially when there is volatility in their local housing markets. With that in mind, there are few remodeling projects that are more likely to add value to a home and allow the homeowner to recoup their costs when selling.
Based on numerous studies of the real estate market, here are the best remodeling projects to increase the value of your home and generate the most interest from prospective buyers:
- Kitchen – As one of the most used rooms in any home, upgrades made to the kitchen are always appealing to prospective buyers. Studies show, however, that the homeowners earn the most value when performing modest upgrades including new cabinets, countertops, floors and well-priced appliances. Hence, homeowners often don’t need to worry about including luxury products when remodeling the kitchen.
- Bathroom – In many cases, remodeling an existing bathroom can raise the value of the home as much as any other project. As bathrooms can typically be remodeled very affordably, this has long been a favorite project of homeowners looking to increase the value of their homes. Though the eventual recouped value seems to be contingent on region, most homeowners who remodeled existing bathrooms experienced better return on their investment than those that added new bathrooms to their homes.
- Windows – Though not as visible as remodeled kitchens or bathrooms, there are few remodeling projects that improve the overall quality of a home better than new energy efficient windows. For instance, smart home buyers will recognize that new windows will not only make the home more comfortable and attractive, but will also save on heating and cooling costs.
- Painting – Though a fresh coat of paint and other exterior improvements may not be necessary for some homeowners, no other remodeling project generates a better response from prospective buyers. Nationwide, the value recouped by homeowners that have pristine exterior is matched only by successful kitchen remodeling projects.
The key to determining if such luxurious projects will add sufficient value to the home and allow the homeowner to recoup the value lies in assessing what is right for the neighborhood. For instance, a home with two bathrooms could gain significant value when a new bathroom is added if all the surrounding properties have three or more bathrooms. Likewise, if you reside in a region where swimming pools are an expected luxury— such as the desert landscape of the southwest—prospective homebuyers probably won’t see your addition as an unnecessary liability.
Most importantly, keep in mind that renovations and remodeling projects may not be as simple as they seem. It is wise to weigh the risks and to consider what is best for the local market before starting any project. If you are unsure what types of remodeling projects would add value in your neighborhood, you may want to consult a real estate agent to get a better understanding of what local buyers are looking for.