Not all home improvement projects are worth the time or money if your goal is to increase your property value. And not all major improvements are worth the ROI. There are some that you can do yourself, saving money in the long run, while others don’t cost all that much to have done professionally. Most are easily accomplished in a weekend if doing them yourself, or a couple of days if you hire out. All are worthwhile the effort, expense and time you’ll put into them. Let’s look and see what you might be able to accomplish this coming week.
1.) Spruce up the kitchen.
Most kitchen remodels aren’t really worth the investment, which can easily reach $50,000 or more. A simple fresh coat of paint can add some life and sparkle to your tired kitchen. You can even paint your countertops instead of replacing them, giving the appearance of expensive granite or even marble while keeping the Formica underneath. A simple installation of a disposal, or a new dishwasher, or a new backsplash or range hood – all ways to add value and vigor to your existing kitchen without breaking the bank or your back. Just remember to keep the home’s architecture and style in mind. Don’t go all modern in your 1900 Craftsman’s kitchen, please.
2.) Work on your curb appeal.
Does your house welcome its guests from the street, or sit there like a boring lump of wood? A couple of days of planting, pruning, mulching and scrubbing can make your home both inviting and increase its value. Again, keep in tune with the neighborhood and the home’s style. And go for easy-to-care for plantings. Perennials make good choices, as do many old fashioned annuals like petunias, hollyhocks and daisies. They add color and fragrance without much fuss, and seem to appeal to most folks. Scrubbing the brick or block foundation, and washing your walkways may seem like a fruitless task, but if you are trying to sell your home, it makes a good impression even if it doesn’t increase value.
3.) Put on a new coat or two.
A fresh coat of paint, either inside, outside or both, can go a long way to adding appeal and value to your home. It show prospective buyers that your home is well cared for. And a fresh coat of paint can give your home an updated look, too. If you are planning on selling your home, don’t go for an all-over neutral, which can make your rooms look boring and unattractive. DO go for neutrals, but vary them. Perhaps a nice pale grey in the bedroom, or a sunny golden hue for the kitchen, instead of white, beige or tan throughout the entire home. If you plan to paint the exterior, keep in mind the home’s age and architecture. You won’t want a modern rancher in 1890s pinks and purples, but you also don’t want your grand Victorian in modern steel grey, either.
4.) Replace a worn carpet or tile.
If the family room’s carpeting has seen better days, or is out of fashion, spending money replacing it with something new can help increase the value of the room, and the home around it. Same thing goes for the bath or kitchen tile. Vinyl tiles are fairly easy and inexpensive to replace, especially in a small room like a bath. In fact, a new tile flooring can update a dated bath without changing another thing in the room. Flooring is one of those things that’s typically best left to the professionals, although you can save some money by preparing the room to receive its new carpet or tile.
5.) Keep the cold out.
Adding an extra layer of insulation to the attic can cost as little as a few hundred dollars, and can take just a few hours to finish, but can add a great deal of value to your home. So can replacing old wooden exterior doors with more energy efficient ones. Again, you can give your home a face lift, add energy efficiency and increase your home’s value in a matter of hours for a few hundred dollars. Many home improvement stores offer installation with the purchase of your new doors for an additional, but worthwhile fee. (A badly installed door can leak more air than your old one, so have it done right.) Tightening your homes energy efficiency can add value for years to come, as you save on each heating and cooling bill.
Increasing the value of your home doesn’t mean spending exorbitant amounts of money, or investing a great deal of time. So, get busy making plans. By this time next week, you could add value and great looks to your home!