There are many things you can do to increase the value of your home without engaging in a full-scale renovation. A home’s value is determined by how well it is maintained, by how modern it is, but also by how it feels. A well-loved home can prove just as valuable as a brand-new home, given the right care and attention. Many people even prefer the character of an older home to the coldness of a new construction — it’s just a matter of how well that home has been taken care of.
Here are 10 tips for increasing the value of your home, without breaking the bank:
1. Plan Your Upgrades
Like with any project, a little planning goes a long way. Upgrades that are made intentionally and not on impulse will end up looking better and costing less. Start slowly. Make a list of rooms that need attention, and then prioritize what projects are nice-to-haves versus must-haves. When you have a categorized list, choose one project to start with and only start on your next project when the first one is finished. This will prevent you from ending up with several “half-finished” renovations and feeling overwhelmed. When you start with a strategy, not only will things get done, but they will get done well and ultimately add value to your home.
2. Update your Kitchen
The number one renovation to tackle to add value to your home is the kitchen. Any real estate expert will tell you that kitchens are key to selling a home. What this means is even small upgrades in your kitchen can go a long way. A remodel can be as simple as painting your kitchen cabinets and replacing old fixtures. A lot of wear and tear happens in the kitchen, so anything you can do to minimize these effects is a big plus for the value of your home. Invest in stainless steel appliance, add a rolling island, paint your cabinets and hang a fancy pot rack, and your kitchen’s value will increase three times what you paid to refresh it.
3. Check for Curb Appeal
First impressions are important and can set the stage for a successful sale. If your home appears welcoming and structurally sound from the outside, it’s value will reflect that. Walk across the street and check out your house. Ask yourself: does my home have curb appeal? If there is anything detracting from the initial impression of your home such as flaking paint, or a cracked walkway, make sure you add those projects to your list. Keep your lawn and garden tidy and encourage your neighbours to do the same. It’s these little touches that tell a potential buyer this home has been well cared for.
4. Refresh your Bathroom
A bathroom is almost as important as a kitchen in the eye of the home-buyer. This is another room that experiences a lot of wear and tear, so it’s important to stay on top of keeping it clean and modern. There are some simple ways you can refresh your bathroom without engaging in a full-on renovation. You can replace old light fixtures, install attractive window coverings, and restore tile with a special cleaner. For more detailed ideas on how to refresh your bathroom, check out our last post!
5. Keep it Clean
This is perhaps the simplest but most important part to maintaining the value of your home. A house can never be too clean, and if you keep up with cleaning, you will experience less maintenance issues later down the road. For example, things like mold in windows can build up over time and become harder to clean. If you stay on top of simple maintenance, then you will be saving time and money in the long run. It’s also healthier for you and your family. Air quality will be better, and you’ll be able to spot potential problems before they become expensive ones.
6. Small Upgrades that Pay
Things like décor can add value to your home just as surely as big-ticket renovations. Little touches like a custom kitchen nook, replacing old faucets and window treatments are the type of things that set a home apart for a buyer. It is often the little things that can have the biggest impact, so pay attention to detail. Do a couple little things every month, like replace yellowing electrical outlets, and in the long run these things will add up to real value for your home.
7. Get an Inspection
You take your car in for regular check-ups, so why shouldn’t you do the same for your home? Even if you aren’t planning on selling any time soon, an inspection can be a valuable thing. An inspection can reveal issues that would’ve snow-balled if gone unchecked. You can also keep inspection records on hand for the day you do decide to sell. Being able to prove you have maintained your home is a definite value add for potential buyers. This way you can also take care of anything critical before you tackle more superficial projects… Instead of spending a bunch of money, and then finding out you need to redo your plumbing!
8. Add a Layer of Paint
This is something anyone can do, and it doesn’t cost much. Re-painting a room is one of the simplest and most effective home improvement projects of all. A freshly painted room is instantly rejuvenated, and that is valuable for your home. Neutrals are always the safest best, and appeal to the highest number of people. A neutral color like a beige or light gray can also lend the illusion of additional space, just like darker colours can feel imposing. A fresh layer of paint is an easy value add that will instantly make your home feel cleaner, fresher and more modern.
9. Increase Energy Efficiency
An energy efficient home is more valuable both to you right now, and to a potential buyer down the road. By making changes to cut your energy costs, you will be putting money back into your own pocket that you can then use to make other upgrades. Many local utility companies will provide a free energy audit if asked, and they will be able to show you where you can cut on your energy costs. Investing in low-energy appliances, installing energy efficient lighting like LED bulbs, and remembering to turn off the heat or AC while you are away from home, are all easy ways to quickly cut on energy costs.
10. Water Filtration Systems
Installing a water filtration system in your kitchen is a quick way to cut on costs while also adding value to your home. It’s these kinds of features that catch the interest of potential homebuyers, and in the meantime, makes a practical addition to your home. No more bottled water, or space-eating water filtration jugs. You’ll be able to drink purified water straight from the tap whenever you like.