Remodeling and renovating can make your home feel more comfortable and enjoyable to live in. Whether you’re thinking of moving within a year or in the far future, a renovation can lead to a large return on investment. It’s only a matter of time before your house starts to seem like it needs a few changes to liven things up. Your home is a financial investment, and the money you put towards it should increase your enjoyment, as well as add to the home's value.
First impressions matter. Curb appeal is how your home looks from the street and gives potential buyers a first impression. Properties that appear well-maintained will attract potential buyers and enhance the “wow” factor of your home.
Fortunately, you don’t need to spend a fortune to make the exterior inviting. Simply painting or adding a new front door are fast, inexpensive ways to improve your outdoor appearance. If your yard seems dull compared to your neighbors, try planting flowers or surround trees with mulch to add a finished look.
The kitchen is considered the heart of the home. This is the point of gathering for families where they cook, eat, and socialize. Kitchen appliances and decor can become outdated fairly quickly. If you keep your kitchen up to date, a kitchen makeover could increase your homes’ value between 50-60 percent of your overall remodel budget.
Not every update you make has to be costly. Swapping out something as simple as your cabinet hardware is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to upgrade your kitchen. Other minor kitchen upgrades include refinishing existing cabinets, updating light fixtures, and putting in a new backsplash. If you want to get into more of the major renovations, consider adding new cabinetry and countertops, as well as installing wood, laminate, or tile flooring.
Adding energy efficient appliances to your home not only helps save you money, but can also help reduce your home’s environmental impact. Homes with drafty doors and windows or a lack of insulation will lead to higher energy usage, which raises the costs for the homeowner. Simple projects you should consider include adding extra insulation to your attic and sealing cracks around the house to prevent energy loss.
Other projects include installing solar panels and purchasing Energy Star rated windows and doors can help save you money on heating and cooling. Many energy-efficient home projects qualify for federal and state green energy tax credits. If you want to know more about how to improve your home’s energy efficiency, many gas and electricity providers offer a professional home energy audit that provides homeowners tips for how to improve their home’s energy efficiency.
Before taking on aesthetically pleasing projects, it’s important to make sure your home has systems that work properly. Many home buyers are looking for homes that don’t need constant maintenance so they can focus on making their home their own. Replacing major home components like the furnace, water heater, or the roof may help get you a higher offer on your home. For instance, the average new roof could increase your homes’ value by thousands of dollars. While these upgrades may be pricey, the outcome is worth it as they will make your home safe and comfortable for you and future occupants to live in.
According to the 2021 Cost vs. Value Report, a deck addition is in the top 10 most valuable home improvement projects. The report looks at how much the job costs, what the resale value is, and how much of the cost you recoup. Decks increase your living area while costing less to build per square foot. Building a deck might be costly upfront, but the return on investment is beneficial in the long run.
Along with adding a deck, if your home has an unfinished room, basement, or attic, finishing these areas is a great way to increase your square footage and add value to your home. Homes are valued and priced by the livable square feet they have, so the more you have, the more likely you are to boost your selling price.
The cost of home improvements can add up, so you want to make sure you are prioritizing quality while also considering your comfort and satisfaction. Luckily, you have a few options when it comes to funding your improvements.
Refinancing your mortgage is a popular way to take advantage of your home’s equity and finance your home improvements without taking out a second mortgage. This option is a great way to pay off debt, and if you are considering this option, it’s best to look into the cost of refinancing a mortgage to see if this is the right option for you.
A personal loan allows you to borrow a fixed amount of money with a fixed interest rate. They are unsecured, meaning they won’t require collateral, or put your property at risk if you can’t make a payment.
A home equity line of credit, or HELOC, often has lower interest rates than personal loans or credit cards, and the interest may be tax deductible. HELOC’s work like a credit card, while providing variable rates and a line of credit you can borrow against.
Putting your home improvement costs on a credit card is okay as long as you are able to make your payment in a short amount of time to avoid high interest rates. Many credit cards come with promotional APR, as well as the ability to earn rewards.
At the end of the day, you want to make sure you enjoy your home while you live there. Focusing on projects that make your home more appealing and energy efficient will help increase the value of your home when the time comes to sell.