Home ownership comes with a host of maintenance requirements and projects. Some tasks simply make the place feel more homey, while other renovations bring an update along with an increase in your home’s worth. If you’re looking to keep your home at its maximum value, consider which projects are worth the investment.
1. Interior Paint
Freshening up the paint throughout the home is a project that will give you the most bang for your buck. Paint and supplies are inexpensive compared to most home projects, and the effect makes the entire space feel clean and new.
2. Exterior Paint
If you have faded or peeling outdoor paint, a fresh coat will automatically raise the value of your home, both in terms of curb appeal and by protecting the exterior surface from damage. Just make sure repairs are made as you go to ensure there are no leaks, rotting boards, or mold issues.
A bathroom remodel can run between $5,000 and $25,000 with the average landing around $7,000-$13,000. However, an aged bathroom can be something a buyer won’t want to tackle, so bringing that bathroom into the modern era with new fixtures and lighting will boost the home’s value. Bonus points if you also invest in making the bathroom handicap accessible.
The kitchen is always a solid choice for value boosting renovation. Just remember it doesn’t have to be an extensive undertaking. Stick with the existing floor plan if it makes sense and avoid moving electrical or plumbing if possible. These are areas where costs can really add up. Instead, refinish quality cabinets, replace appliances, add new countertops, put in a backsplash, and install new flooring.
5. Siding or Veneer
The outside of your home serves as a first impression. It’s kind of like a resume. If it doesn’t get a buyer's attention, they’re not going to pursue it further. Replacing aged siding not only adds to curb appeal, it will also help secure a good report from the home inspector. You may also want to add stone veneer or make repairs to stucco finishes, depending on the architecture and location of your home.
6. Garage Door
Replacing the garage door adds an undeniable wow factor that will draw attention to your home and make it stand out. Plus, it’s an expense a new owner won’t have to take on.
7. Front Door
The front door represents the entire home. Upgrading the quality of the door adds safety features and durability. If nothing else, painting the door brings a fresh, clean, inviting look. Adding a storm door adds another layer of protection and speaks to pride of ownership.
Go for the basics here and keep your budget in mind, but know that landscaping can make the difference between a sale and no sale. Imagine a dead, dandelion-filled lawn compared to raised beds with colorful flowers, for example. You can add underground sprinklers, water features, pathways, lighting, and sitting areas to really enhance the space.
For some properties you may need to improve drainage or correct the slope, which is more expensive and less noticeable, but can help avoid problems when it’s time to sell.
Anyone who has pets or kids, or just likes their privacy, will appreciate a fence if it’s an option. In fact, it may be a requirement for the house hunter that falls in love with your home.
New flooring is a cost-effective way to provide a nearly instant upgrade to your interior space. Pull out the compressed, dirty carpet or the old vinyl and put down some click-together laminate flooring or hardwood.
11. Replace Windows
New windows not only give an instant facelift to the look of the home, they add valuable energy-efficiency too. It can be very expensive to replace all the windows in the house, so consider working on one room, side, or level of the home at a time. Start with the windows you use the most or those that are visible from the driveway.
12. Add Deck or Patio
Outdoor living space is mandatory for many house hunters so replace or install a gathering area adjacent to the house. This can be a concrete patio, a paver stone sitting area, or an expansive deck. Just make sure the project is up to code and passes safety inspections.