Why Remodel your Home?
Your home is your castle, so you deserve to enjoy it. If a remodel makes your home more livable and serves the growing needs of your family, such as more bedrooms, more bathrooms, or a more functional kitchen, you will win if you can also recover at least a portion of your expenses.
Depending on your current needs, local real estate market, your finances, schools in your neighborhood, it may make more sense to remodel rather than trying to sell your home and buy a new one.
What Home Improvement Projects Worth Your Money?
If you think any home improvement is a smart investment and you can recover all costs on resale, think again. You need to understand that home buyers view homes differently than homeowners. As mentioned above, the most profitable remodeling projects are bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and energy – efficient upgrades, but to maximize your return on investment you must manage the project costs very carefully.
Keep in mind that your remodeling projects must fit into your overall home architecture and that your home will not become the most expensive on the block.
To understand what remodeling projects are likely to give you the most return on investment in your location refer to the latest 2016 Cost vs. Value Report published by Remodeling Magazine.
What are the Best Home Improvement Projects?
Below is the list of the projects that add value to your home.
Small Projects up to $3,000
A thorough cleaning of your home can immediately give it new life. Rent a power washer to clean all exterior walls, the driveway, sidewalks, patios and decks. This will take years off your home’s appearance.
Rearranging and Reorganizing
Rearrange furniture to transform rooms and create new looks. Reorganize and/or remove excess/unwanted items in your closets, garage, attic, deck, patio, and yard.
One of the fastest ways to create new looks for your home is to paint your home walls, ceilings, windows, and trim with new colors.
Replace Plumbing Fixtures
Installing new kitchen and bathroom plumbing fixtures is another low cost big impact project..
Install New Lighting and Window Treatments
Home buyers like bright rooms, so lack of good lighting in a room is a big turn off. To brighten rooms and help them come alive and inviting install clean profile lighting fixtures and airy window treatments.
Replace Door/Cabinet Hardware and Accessories
Installing new hardware on your front door, kitchen, baths and closets is another quick valuable upgrade.
Mid-sized Projects: $3,000 to $15,000
Deck or Patio Area
In California, the out-of-doors activity is a key part of the lifestyle, so adding an easily accessible, comfortable and private outdoor entertaining area is one of the safest value adding projects.
See if removing some non-load bearing walls could give you an opportunity to increase the square footage of your living area.
Architectural Details and Crown Molding
New wainscoting, floor or crown molding and window trim can be also impressive and make your home different.
Certain built-in options, such as bookcases, garage shelving, pantries, wall units that convert to work stations, laundry and walk-in closets, under stair caches make a valuable storage to help you get organized.
Home buyers always look down, so the flooring is important too. Hardwood flooring is traditionally prized over all others, so if you have them, flaunt them. Replace tired linoleum, carpet and tile floors with affordable options like laminates, or sustainable products like cork or bamboo.
This can be a little or big endeavor, ranging from replacing inefficient lighting fixtures to installing Energy Star appliances, using sustainable materials during remodeling to becoming part of the energy grid with solar panels.
Major Projects: $15,000 +
In general, buyers view the kitchen as the most valued room in the home, so kitchen remodeling usually provides the best return on investment. We advise using clean-lined cabinetry, simple silhouette fixtures and trim, streamlined appliances, and neutral stone/tile materials, but good counter space and storage is a must. Also, you have to carefully plan the workflow pattern between your stove, refrigerator and sink.
The master bedroom bathroom is your most important bath remodel project. Important features include large showers, soaking tubs, linen and personal item storage and a separate toilet nook. If your home doesn’t have a master bath, then remodel your main bathroom. It’s better if the remodel involves clean line fixtures and neutral materials.
Projects that May DECREASE Home Value
- Home office converted from a bedroom
- Swimming pools
- Sun rooms
- Fussy chandeliers or avant-garde lighting fixtures
- Shoddy construction and use of cheap, low-quality materials
- Wall murals, decorative plaster work or permanent art