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You may have lived in your home for decades or you might have just moved in last year—but either way, chances are fairly strong that there is at least one thing about your property that you’d like to change. Maybe that change has to do with bringing an update to the kitchen or bathroom, finishing off the basement, adding new siding, or building out an outdoor living room on a brand new deck. Whatever home remodeling idea you’ve been dreaming about, it’s a good idea to research the likely return on that investment prior to calling in the architects and contractors. Many remodels will add immediate and lasting value to your home, but others may not. Contrary to popular belief, taking out a second mortgage to spring for the best marble countertops, stainless steel fixtures, or other updates may actually work against you being able to recoup the investment when it comes time to sell your home.
Not all remodeling projects are considered equal. The best remodeling ideas combine low-maintenance with good quality (not necessarily the best) materials, and keep an eye on the budget. Here are a few great examples of home renovation projects that will actually increase your home value, and give you a solid return on your investment.
Many of us cannot wait for good weather to finally allow us to move outdoors for the summer. Adding a good deck and creating lovely outdoor living “rooms” is not only an affordable way to increase your satisfaction with your home, but it can also considerably increase the market value of your home. If your home already has a deck or patio in place, then upgrading it to a contemporary, sophisticated look can be more affordable and easier than you may think. Modern decking systems can, in many cases, be built directly on older deck foundations.
Take that idea of a dream kitchen, with its stainless steel and cast iron fixtures and myriad of other bells and whistles, and envision something simpler. The kinds of kitchen makeovers featured on the design programs are incredibly expensive and do not significantly (compared to their cost) increase a home’s resale value. That said, a modest kitchen makeover that re-faces cabinets, replaces outdated floors and counters, and provides new (if not top-tier) appliances will recoup about two-thirds of their cost in resale value.
Much like kitchen remodels, redoing a bath room can be a relatively inexpensive and high-yield investment, provided the homeowner keeps costs down by choosing reasonably priced fixtures and materials. In many housing markets, bathroom makeovers (especially when there is water damage or other issues with the existing bathroom) can actually increase home value beyond the sum of their costs.
There are very few home improvement projects that cost less and yield a greater return than adding an additional bedroom without adding on to the footprint of the house. Attics often afford homeowners with the simplest and most cost effective way to add a bedroom, or bedrooms onto an existing structure. The walls, ceiling, and floors already exist and merely need to be finished. Add a closet and some electrical fixtures, and you’re nearly done. Even in cases where a staircase must be built, or the existing roof must be raised to add to the height of the walls, these projects generally provide as much, if not more, value as they cost.
Whether you’re planning to live out your days in your current home, or you’ll be looking to relocate or upgrade in the next few years, there are several ways you can invest in remodeling and improving your property that will provide a return on your investment. Updating a kitchen or bathroom, putting in outdoor living spaces with a brand new deck, and converting an attic space into a bedroom are just three ways you can invest in your home without throwing your money away. Just make sure to approach each project with a budget in mind and choose your home remodeling project wisely!