Which Home Improvements Add Value?
Making improvements before putting your home on the market is smart, but be sure you’ll get your money’s worth
If you're trying to sell your home, you want to get as much for it as possible. To increase its value and encourage higher offers, it's a good idea to put some effort into making improvements before you put the home on the market.
First, do your homework. Plenty of upgrades can make your home a more attractive purchase. Bathroom and kitchen upgrades are very popular, for example. “Green improvements” like solar panels can also be good selling points. The key is to not put more money into improving your home than you believe you’ll get back when it comes time to sell. For example, one study of homes in the Mountain West, which includes Nevada, found that adding attic insulation is such a good selling point that it pays back more than 93 percent of the cost to add it, but spending thousands to add a bathroom only repays back 52.6 percent of the cost.1
While any home improvements are likely to help, below are some good ones to consider.
Improvements that open up space. People like having lots of space, so naturally, any improvement you're able to make that frees up space is a plus. This could mean eliminating an island in the kitchen (if it's unnecessary to the functionality of the room), or it could be knocking down a wall to combine two smaller rooms into one more spacious room.
Storage. Just as people like to have a lot of room to move around, they also like to have a lot of room to keep their belongings. If the closet in your master bedroom isn’t very large, consider investing in space-saving closet solutions to make the best use of what you have. If you have room to add cabinets or shelving that can give potential buyers more storage space, it is likely to be another attractive selling point that can add value to your home.
Flooring. Floors are a major part of any home, and it's an element that most homebuyers are particularly concerned with. Is there old carpet that needs to be ripped up? Is the hardwood scratched? Do linoleum or tiles need to be replaced? Do a walkthrough of your home and closely examine the floor of every room, and evaluate whether or not improvements are in order.
Remove textured ceilings. Do you have "popcorn" ceilings or other textured patterns on your ceiling? That might have been nice at one point, but the truth is, a lot of people find it outdated now, and are likely to be turned off by it. It turns out that it's not incredibly difficult to remove the ceiling texture if you have an afternoon to work on it. There are plenty of tutorials online that will walk you through the process and help you quickly add a bit more value to your home.
Water systems. A water filtration system can be attractive to a potential home buyer, especially if they are particularly health-conscious. These systems provide cleaner water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and laundry. Likewise, water softeners can be a draw, especially in areas where tap water contains a lot of minerals. They help keep dishes and clothes cleaner with less detergent, and cut down on hard water buildup in pipes and fixtures.
Landscaping. Landscaping and the appearance of the yard, trees, etc. can go a long way in improving your home's value. For one, people see all of this as soon as they pull up to the curb to look at your home. A well-maintained yard and landscaping gives a great first impression, and even suggests that the home itself is well cared for. You may even consider planting a tree or two for added attractiveness.
The Front Door. Speaking of first impressions, improvements to the front door and its surrounding area can drive up the value of your home. Consider a fresh coat of paint for the door and trim. A security screen door is also a good selling point.
Lighting. How is your home's lighting situation? Is there room for improvement there? People (especially the elderly), want a home that is well-lit when it needs to be. This could be anything from installing overhead “can” lights to investing in skylights.
General maintenance. Of course, general maintenance and upkeep of your home is as good a selling point as anything else. People are much more comfortable moving into a home that they know has been taken care of. That means making regular repairs and keeping things clean and in good shape.
Need to borrow money to fix up your home? Consider a Home Equity Credit Line** from Nevada State Bank. And when it’s time to move, we can help you with a mortgage** for your new home. Our Residential Mortgage team will work closely with you to assess your needs and offer you the financing that will work for you. Contact a Nevada State Bank representative for details.
**Credit approval required, restrictions apply. Nevada State Bank NMLS# 561942.
The information provided is presented for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal or business advice. Any views expressed in this article may not necessarily be those of Nevada State Bank, a division of ZB, N.A.