Despite the fact that the economy is slowing, the number of proprietors spending on home renovations and upgrades is on the rise. Before bulldozing ahead with your home renovation ideas and turning them into reality, keep in mind the fact that not every project increases the resale value of the property.
This is especially true of issues involving the building structure and other basic features like broken toilets or non-working appliances. While such upgrades are a necessary evil, don’t expect any returns when it comes time to sell. Because a buyer expects things to be in working order and the building structurally sound. Let’s face the renovations due to wear and tear are carried out to maintain the integrity of the property. If you don’t keep up with these, then your property will degenerate and crumble to the ground! Nobody wants that.
This does not mean that you shouldn’t follow through on your aspirations of home upgrades and remodeling. Just pick and choose the projects with care. So when the time to sell comes, there is more money in your pocket. There are loads of projects that will payback, and then there are others that can actually hurt the property value. The general perception is that the below-mentioned ventures will add value to your home but in reality give you nothing in return.
1. Upgrading Swimming Pools
Adding a swimming pool sounds like a sound investment. After all, who can’t imagine that perfectly sunny day spent lounging around the pool with the whole family or even hosting pool parties for friends and extended family. The first problem with that perfect picture is that pools are a costly investment, but suppose you have that covered. Next, we have the potential for safety issues, which translates to added and reoccurring insurance costs. Add to that the extra and again reoccurring maintenance expense and we get the bigger picture. A large number of potential buyers are turned off by the added costs and liability.
However, you need to use your judgment as well before making the final decision. For example, if you are located in an area where winters are long and summers short. That is another reason for the pool being a deterrent for potential buyers. On the other hand, if you reside in a neighborhood where every house has one except yours. Then it can become a reason for not being able to sell your house for the best price possible. Lastly, if the reason for adding the pool is purely personal enjoyment, and you plan to stay in the house for some years, then by all means go with the upgrade. Not every project of home upgrades has to be about financial gains.
2. Creative Home Upgrades in Curb Appeal
There is no arguing that clean, well-maintained front lawns help sell homes. But too much beautification and landscaping might be counterproductive. No doubt the exotic plants and flowers will look very pretty in the front yard, but they also require special care and maintenance. While you may enjoy spending your Sunday morning tending to the needs of these special plants, the potential buyer may see it as a drain on their time. Perhaps you find that expensive wrought-iron fence going all around your yard appealing, but that is a personal preference, the potential buyer may prefer a fence-free yard.
For best returns, it is wiser to spend your money on keeping your lawn well-manicured, weeded with bushes trimmed. Well-maintained foliage and flowering plants that are indigenous to the area will not have high initial planting costs nor require special care and they will look just as pretty if the upkeep is there.
3. Home Upgrades in Wall to Wall Carpeting
Wall-to-wall carpeting trends is now outdated. Carpets are magnets for allergens and dirt, they stain and worst of all if you have a pet then a single accident can leave the whole house smelling bad for days!
Currently, homeowners are removing wall-to-wall carpeting and upgrading with hardwood floors or a mix of the two. Placing new hardwood floors can be a bit costly, but they pay their cost back at the time of sale. If there is a hardwood floor hidden under that living room carpet, then you have hit a gold mine. As removing it and refinishing the floor is considerably cheaper than putting in new floors. But if your flooring is mainly carpeted, the value of the house can drop by several thousand dollars. If hardwood flooring is out of your budget, even vinyl flooring with its wide selection of designs and colors pays back better than wall-to-wall carpeting.
4. Upgrading High-end Appliances
Replacing outdated appliances like a stove, fridge, or dishwasher with high-end ones may not be a worthwhile venture. Certain types of loans make it mandatory for different appliances to be installed in the house to approve the loans. Potential home buyers tend to think of such items as standard household items. They will not pay for the hefty price of a high-end replacement. If such items need to be updated, it’s best to go with those more affordable and easily serviceable upgrades. Choose neutral colors instead of steel which tend to be more costly.
Same holds true for items like fireplaces, lighting fixtures, faucets and door handles. Unless you plan never to sell a house, then you can upgrade with top designer items that suit your style. However, if you are going to eventually be selling, then it is best to stick with items that provide value for money. Also adding extravagant upgrades at different times may not tie the rooms together. Having a designer kitchen when the rest of the house is furnished with average items can actually detract the home’s value. Every homeowner has personal tastes and style so it is best to leave the costly choices to them.
5. Limiting Renovations
It is common knowledge that good bathrooms and kitchens sell a house. That does not mean you neglect the rest of the house. Overspending on one room and not upgrading others creates an inequity in the scheme of things and this is a huge mistake. Upgrading just one bathroom when the whole house needs a paint job will just negate what is done in the bathroom. Home renovations spread over several rooms offer a consistent flow of the design.
6. Invisible Home Upgrades Investments
Most commonly, buyers use their eyes when looking to purchase. If what they see appeals to their senses, more often than not they will be willing to make a good offer. Otherwise, they will simply walk away. Items like air ducts, pipes, insulation, water heater, etc. are expected to be in good working order. But renovations they can see will have a greater impact when it comes to returns.
7. Do It Yourself Upgrades
Quality and good workmanship is its cornerstone. A large number of people attempt DIY renovation projects. They tend to spend much money on purchasing good quality flooring, but do a poor job of installation. The installed flooring is uneven or crooked fitting. In such a scenario, potential buyers will be turned off. Untidy paint job, poorly installed doors or windows have the same effect. While DIY home renovations on a budget may sound like a good idea, projects that come out looking amateurish will hurt the value of the house. Work that is done professionally adds appeal and provides a result that is attractive to look at. So even if you end up paying more by hiring a professional, the final look will be worth it.
When considering home renovation ideas, make improvements that you and the family will enjoy, especially if you are not planning to sell for the next several years. Make renovations that will improve a home’s functionality, security, and comfort. In this way, you will also be adding value to your property without actually trying. Let’s face it, when push comes to shove, regardless of whether you live in a castle or a one-room apartment, everyone wants a home that is secure and comfortable.
Also, keep in mind that most renovation projects do not yield dollar for dollar return. Even while renovating that closet space may not recover fifty percent of its cost. If it makes your life easier in the morning, then it is worth it. The fact is that when the time to sell comes, home upgrades that give maximum returns are not the ones that cost an arm and a leg. Removing clutter, lots of elbow grease and staging pay off much better than any renovation project.