Remodeling and upgrades can help increase the return on investment (ROI) of a home; however, it is unlikely the homeowner will recoup the total cost of most upgrades. Generally, an upgrade project must fix a design or structural flaw to recover the construction cost.
A home remodeling project can help increase a home’s value. But not all home upgrades are created equal. Some projects come with a higher ROI than others, and some can even reduce the sales price.
According to Zonda in their Cost vs. Value Report, the average cost and resale value for some typical home improvement projects with at least a 50% ROI include:
- Garage Door Replacement: 93.8%
- Manufactured Stone Veneer: 92.1%
- Minor Kitchen Remodel: 72.2%
- Composite Deck Addition: 63.2%
- Midrange Bath Remodel: 60.1%
- Major Kitchen Remodel: 53.9%
- Midrange Bathroom Addition: 53.1%
Minor Upgrades That Can Boost Your Home’s Value
There are several low-cost improvement projects a homeowner can undertake that will improve the form and functionality of the home. Some of these include:
1. Fresh Paint
Giving your home’s interior a new coat of paint is one of the most cost-effective improvements you can make. When painting, choose neutral colors like gray, beige, or white that appeal to a broad range of buyers.
2. Invest in Smart Home Technology
Consider switching out a regular thermostat for a smart one that can help save on utility costs. Don’t overlook smart home security; something as simple as adding a smart video doorbell or smart lights could help your home sell faster.
3. New Lighting
New lighting can be most beneficial for homes with little natural light. Upgrading the lighting is easy and inexpensive. Some ideas to consider:
- Install dimmer switches on lamps and fixtures.
- Install under-cabinet light strips in the kitchen or workroom.
- Add new kitchen light fixtures.
4. Small Bathroom Updates
You don’t have to tear out the entire bathroom to give it an updated appearance. Instead, a few simple fixes, like replacing the vanity lights or changing out the sink and shower fixtures, can give it a facelift.
Other simple repairs to consider making before putting your home on the market include:
- Repair any broken or leaky plumbing.
- Replace cracked tiles.
- Replace broken appliances.
If your home is in good shape, it is unnecessary to make significant upgrades or improvements. Instead, keeping up with regular maintenance and repairs may be all that is necessary.
Renovations To Avoid
One of the biggest mistakes in upgrading is improving a home above the average of neighboring homes. Not every upgrade to your home will be worth it unless you’re upgrading for your comfort. If your goal is to attract more buyers, it is best to avoid these upgrades:
- High-end landscaping. Few buyers find the maintenance costs of expensive landscaping and water features worth it.
- Luxury upgrades. Consider the local housing market before investing in high-end upgrades that only a few might consider a “must-have.”
- Swimming pools. A pool can be something your family can enjoy if you are not planning on moving for a while. But don’t add a pool as an attempt to appeal to buyers who may see it as a safety issue or a maintenance burden.
- Replacing carpeting. If the carpet is not badly worn, you’re usually better off cleaning the existing carpets.
When planning a home improvement or remodeling project, ask yourself a simple question, “Is this for my quality of life or to increase the home’s value?” If your answer is to increase the home’s value, remember that most projects offer just a small return on investment.