If you’re planning on selling your home or beginning a renovation project, knowing the best ways to add value to your home is more important than ever. Finding ways to boost the value of your home and help it stand out from the rest may even help to sell your home faster!
To help you get the most bang for your buck when selling your home, we've provided a list of home improvement projects that will be sure to add value. Read on to learn what project is best for your home.
On this page
- The top ten ways to add value to your home
- Should you DIY or hire a professional?
- How to choose the right home improvement project
The top ten ways to add value to your home
Improve your curb appeal
If you were to talk with any real estate agent, they would tell you that one of the best ways of adding value to your home is by improving your curb appeal. Your curb appeal is the attractiveness of your home and its surroundings as viewed from the street or sidewalk. With first impressions being so important, especially in the property market, it is easy to see why curb appeal is so often spoken about.
There are several ways that you can improve your home’s curb appeal, from something as simple as mowing your front lawn to something more complex such as building a walkway or landscaping. No matter your budget or time constraints, you can find ways to improve your home’s curb appeal.
One of the great things about improving your curb appeal is that it does not take a lot of effort to make a big difference to your home. Studies done by Michigan State University have found that boosting your home’s curb appeal can increase the perceived home value by 5% to 11%. Not bad!
Finish the basement
If you have an unfinished basement that is only being used as a storage space, you could be missing out on a big opportunity. Not only can a finished basement add liveable square footage to your home, but it can also impact your property’s resale value.
If you are planning to sell your home make sure that you turn your unfinished basement into a space that will be attractive to the most home buyers possible. Basements that are transformed into living rooms, home offices, or playrooms are likely to gain the most attention from buyers.
Turning your basement into a liveable space is one of the largest investments on this list but can also be one of the most cost-effective. A full basement remodel can cost anywhere from $27,000 to $81,000 depending on the type and size. However, you can expect a return on investment for a basement remodel of 70% to 75%.
Paint your interior
Aside from making the inside of your home look clean and updated, painting your home’s interior is an affordable home improvement project that can have a big impact on your home’s resale value.
A new paint color can refresh your home and help appeal to a greater number of people. A good place to start is repainting any bright or bold color schemes with more neutral tones. While accent walls and bold colors may have been your style, they tend to be off-putting for potential buyers.
Painting your interior also has one of the best returns on investments (ROI) from any home improvement project at 107%. This makes the $7,500 to $10,000 cost to paint your interior a worthy investment.
Paint your exterior
Adding a fresh coat of paint can provide many benefits, such as protecting your home from harsh weather and fixing any damages or imperfections. But did you know that painting your home’s exterior can increase the value of your home?
Painting your home’s exterior will not only impress your neighbors and passers-by, but it can also attract more potential buyers.
Unlike some of the other home improvements on this list, it is recommended that your home’s exterior is painted by a professional. While it is possible to paint your home yourself, it is often more of a hassle than a convenience. Hiring a professional to paint your home’s exterior can cost you anywhere from $3,750 to $9,750.
Update your kitchen
For many potential homebuyers, the kitchen is the most important room in the home. If you are planning on selling your house with an updated kitchen, it may have a big impact on the resale value.
However, a kitchen remodel is not for the faint-hearted with it being a sizeable financial investment and commitment. A full kitchen remodel has a national average price range between $15,000 and $50,000. While you are unlikely to get every dollar you invest back, you should expect an ROI of between 50% and 80%.
While undertaking a full kitchen remodel may be too big a task, there are several minor remodels that could still add value to your home. Kitchen upgrades such as cabinet refacing, replacing your kitchen countertops, installing a modern backsplash, or updating your fixtures require less of an investment but can still make a difference.
Spruce up your outdoor spaces
With so many homeowners being forced to stay home during the pandemic, outdoor living areas have risen in importance and become more desirable for home buyers.
Depending on your home, you can either add or update an outdoor living space to boost your home’s value. Additions like patios, decks, outdoor kitchens, or pergolas, can increase your chances of selling your home faster and at a higher price. However, these projects will require large investments with a new patio costing between $3,000 and $8,000, and building a deck costing between $5,500 to $16,000.
If adding an outdoor living space is beyond your budget, don’t worry – there are other more affordable options that can still add value. Smaller home improvement projects such as staining your deck or building a fire pit can still have a big impact.
Make your home more energy efficient
Energy efficiency upgrades can not only lower your monthly utility bill and save you money in the long run, but they can also increase your property’s value. You also will not have to break the bank to make your home more energy efficient.
Some of the most popular energy-efficient home upgrades include upgrading your home insulation, installing energy-efficient windows, or installing a smart thermostat. Having some of these upgrades in your home can create a great selling point and attract more home buyers at a higher price.
If you are on a budget, then installing energy-efficient appliances such as a smart thermostat is an ideal upgrade. At an average cost of between $200 and $500, smart thermostats can save you money and add thousands to your home’s value.
Renovate your bathroom
Along with the kitchen, the bathroom is one of the most important and focused rooms in the home. That is why when people are looking to purchase a home the bathroom design and condition are a top consideration. An updated and well-designed bathroom can attract more potential buyers who would not have considered your house otherwise.
While bathroom remodels will increase the value of your home, due to the size of the project, it should only be undertaken if truly necessary. If your bathroom has cracked tiles, water damage, or is very outdated, then you will benefit most from a remodel.
Clean and declutter
Something as straightforward as cleaning and decluttering in and around your home can help boost its value. Just by decreasing the amount of unnecessary and unwanted things around your home, you can make a big difference to the home's overall appeal.
If you are putting your home on the market, cleaning and decluttering will make sure that you are putting your best foot forward and displaying the home in its finest condition. A clean and well-displayed home helps you attract more sellers and gives you a better chance of selling quickly.
Cleaning and decluttering is also a relatively low-cost task, with a professional cleaner costing between $150 and $250. Or, there’s always the option of renting the cleaning equipment out and doing it yourself.
Install solar panels
If a homebuyer is given the option between two identical homes but one has a solar energy system and the other does not, they are more than likely going to choose the one with solar. The evidence also shows that they will pay more for it.
Installing solar panels in your home can go as far as eliminating your entire monthly electricity bill. This could save the average household approximately $1,500 a year on electric bills. With those savings, it is easy to see why solar panels will add value to your home.
But exactly how much will solar panels increase the value of your home? A study by the National Bureau of Economic Research estimated that home buyers gave a 4% premium to homes with solar energy systems installed compared to homes without solar.
Solar panels are a large investment of between $15,000 and $21,000 depending on your location and the size of the system. However, with solar providing huge annual savings and the potential to increase your home’s value, they are a no-brainer for any homeowner.
Should you DIY or hire a professional?
It is easy to understand why so many homeowners consider undertaking a DIY home improvement project to save on costs, but is it best to go DIY, or should you always hire a professional?
The answer? It depends on the task, your skillset, and your experience. There are some home improvements on this list that could be made a DIY project. Things such as painting your interior, cleaning and decluttering your home, or improving your curb appeal could all be tackled yourself.
However, no matter how many YouTube videos you watch, there are just some projects that should be left to the professionals. If your home renovation involves things such as structural alterations and electrical or plumbing work, then it is best to hire a professional. This means projects like kitchen and bathroom remodels or finishing off your basement should probably be left to the experts.
How to choose the right home improvement project
With both your time and money being finite, and home improvement projects being costly and time-consuming, you must select the right one to undertake. But, with the list of potential home improvement projects being endless, making that choice can be difficult.
There are some ways to narrow down your options, and the first is by assessing your budget. By looking at what you are willing to spend on the project, you’re able to see the types of projects that are within your capabilities. For example, if your budget is $5,000, then you are probably not going to be taking on a kitchen renovation.
You should then look at what inside or outside your home needs fixing or repairing. While it may be tempting to take on more exciting projects, it is important that you first deal with any issues with your home.
The final and perhaps the most important consideration is the impact the project is going to have on your home’s value. Not all value-adding projects will be relevant to your property, so try finding your home’s specific needs and capitalizing on them.