October 23, 2013

Top 5 Best Home Renovations for Return on Investment

There are numerous ways you can invest money into your home to gain resale value. The goal should always be to regain all of your investment and then some- it is possible! That is where the top best home renovations list comes in handy! Look at the neighborhood and how your house ranks with others. Does it need a lot of work compared to the ones next door or does it have the same features i.e. a deck, modern amenities in the kitchen and bathrooms, green technologies for energy efficiency? You may want to consider this when deciding where to spend your renovation dollars.

Top 5 Home Renovation Investments:

1. Kitchen Remodeling

Most experts would agree that putting money into your kitchen is one of the best moves you can make when it comes to investing in your home. Whether it is a complete kitchen remodel with new appliances,counters and lighting or a simple renovation and update of appliances and lighting. The kitchen is the heart of the home, it’s where family’s come together at the end of the day or for the holiday’s where family and friends gather. Your money will be spent wisely here, upgrading this area will increase the value of your home and give you as much as 50% return on your investment while you enjoy the new space before selling, if you decide to sell.

2. Bathroom Remodeling

With bathrooms being a very personal space in the home potential buyers may not consider buying a house if the bathrooms are in poor shape or badly outdated. Bathroom’s can also be a costly area of the home to renovate but the return is even greater than that of the kitchen in most cases. No one wants to buy a house that has a toilet that looks 50 years old, or a vanity from the 70’s with an old Formica counter top that’s falling apart. Leaky plumbing will surely become and bargaining chip for anyone considering the home. Cracked or chipped ceilings and walls need to be repaired and or replaced depending on the severity of them. The renovation here doesn’t have to be a major undertaken, although sometimes necessary. A simple fixture switch out, new flooring, painting and lighting could be all that is needed to bring in the offer your looking for.

3. Exterior Renovation

Curb appeal is one of the other big contributing factors in home resale. While it may seem vain, much like people eat with their eyes they also make purchases based on appearance, even major ones like buying a new home or car. Repainting the exterior, repairing the woods siding or re-siding with vinyl siding can go a long way. Roofing is a relatively small investment to make if your roof is in poor shape. If you don’t have at least 5 years left on the roof before you sell it, then consider getting a new roof done. Repair or replace rotted trim boards around  the home, again another low cost item that will give you big return. Clean up overgrown bushes close to the home as well as repairing or repaving the driveway. Update your deck while your outside…with the new composite decking and railing systems that’s on the market today and so long as your under-carriage, or framing that is, has been done with pressure treated lumber and has the proper footings have been installed a simple decking and railing makeover will definitely make a big impact on the sale. You could, assuming again the framing and footings are correct, build a screen porch or 3 seasons room for a relatively small investment compared to the return.

4. Painting & Flooring

While this is a small and aesthetic renovation process it makes a world of difference. A fresh coat of paint can go a long way in any room of the house. Keep in mind to choose neutral modern colors that are not dark in shade, unless you have someone who knows what they are doing with respect to interior design. Remember most people buy with their eyes, so if the area is not cluttered and a fresh coat of paint has been applied to the home it will give you a better return on the investment. Old rugs need to go. I can’t emphasize enough about rugs, the cost is almost next to nothing compared to other flooring. If there old just get new ones. Laminate flooring is another way to install a less expensive floor and make a bad floor look good. Bottom line is the floor is one of the first things a potential buyer see’s, they walk on it, sit on it, the kids play on it and the cat and dog sleeps on it. So like the painting it is another area that will bring a good return on the investment you make.

5. Go Green

There has been a growing demand for green housing as well as green thinking and there can be tax incentive’s along with it. Keeping heating and cooling cost down especially in New England can be a huge marketing advantage. While solar panels may be too much of an investment initially for most, those who can afford it will eventually pay off in the end. While other smaller green improvements & renovations can be done to refurbish rather than replace, re-use rather than buy new. Hiring a professional to find the “leaks” in the homes inner shell by doing such things as a blower door test then repairing those leaks to create a tighter shell.  Insulating areas that need insulation while also taking a look at your windows to decide whether it’s a worth while investment to replace the ones that are not energy efficient. Insulate your hot water tank or replace it with a tank-less hot water heater, insulate the hot water lines in the home. These are just a few areas you could improve on to make your home more energy efficient and ultimately more green.