Any interior designer and architect can tell you that there are countless ways to renovate and customize your home. What you may not realize, however, is that these can vary radically in terms of their cost-effectiveness. Some installations and upgrades can increase your home’s value so much that it is well worth carrying them out, while others may only have a negligible effect, or in some cases, actually harm the desirability of your house. This may not necessarily be an issue if you don’t ever plan to sell. However, it is worth paying attention to this if you do plan on moving someday.
Here are 7 ways to upgrade your home that are always worth it.
Double Glazed Windows
Energy efficiency is becoming more and more of a concern for homebuyers. Naturally, from an economic perspective, energy efficiency is important, because it has a significant effect on the cost of heating and electricity bills. Additionally, the burning of fossil fuels for electricity and heating is one of the leading causes of carbon dioxide emissions. As a result, more energy-efficient homes also have a lower carbon footprint and are more environmentally friendly.
One easy way to boost your energy efficiency, and therefore your house value, is to replace your windows with double-glazed ones. Windows have a huge effect on the aesthetic of your home’s exterior, and as such, replacement windows recoup roughly 75% of the price of installation, in terms of value. Moreover, double glazing reduces heat loss and gain by up to 30%, meaning that, when accounting for energy bills, they are absolutely worthwhile.
Minor Kitchen and Bathroom Remodels
Kitchens and bathrooms are obviously one of the things that prospective homebuyers pay most attention to when evaluating a property. However, not all elements of a full kitchen or bathroom renovation will have an impact on your home’s value. Economically, it thus makes sense to pay attention to the aspects of these areas which are most cost-effective. For kitchens, faucets, flooring, and cabinet hardware are the parts which will most affect the look of the room, and thus your property’s value. Appliances are also worth considering if your current ones are particularly outdated, or inefficient.
A similarly conservative approach can pay dividends when renovating your bathroom. Specifically, consider replacing your tiling, light fixtures, and grouting. If you are choosing between remodeling either your bathroom or kitchen, bathrooms normally recoup more of the renovation costs. It is also worth taking into account the value of the property itself, before committing to an elaborate renovation. For example, it makes little sense to spend loads of money refitting kitchens or bathrooms when the property itself is not worth that much.
As mentioned earlier, energy efficiency has a notable effect on the cost of your home’s bills, as well as its resale value. For these reasons, solar panels can be a highly desirable addition to your house. Not only will this make your property way more environmentally friendly, but it will also dramatically slash your electricity and heating costs. In particular, in warmer climates, properties can depend nearly entirely on their solar panels. The upfront cost of installing solar panels is high, but between energy savings and your increased resale value, it is still likely to be worthwhile. Many governments also subsidize this process, since it is good for the environment.
One of the most popular renovation projects is the conversion of attics into livable spaces. Aside from the economic concerns, renovating your attic can be highly appealing, since it significantly increases the floor space of your home, at a much smaller cost than an extension. Because attic conversions do not increase the overall size of a property, they also do not affect your property taxes like an extension would. However, as desirable as they can be, it is worth noting that attic conversions normally recoup only around half of the price of the renovation at the point of sale. Therefore, while they do markedly increase the value of properties, you should only commit to such a project if you plan to enjoy it yourself for a long time, prior to selling.
Adding some wooden decking to the exterior of your home is one of the cheapest ways at your disposal to increase the living space of your property. As such, they are also one of the most cost-effective installations in terms of home value. In fact, the increase in resale value for homes with decking covers a greater percentage of the installation cost than for either bathroom or kitchen renovations. However, it is also important that you make sure to maintain the quality of your deck, upon installing it. This is because a poorly maintained deck can damage the curb appeal of your home, and even end up reducing its value.
While a new roof may not dramatically increase the desirability of your home, an old roof can be very unappealing to certain homebuyers. Many of them will not have the funds for an extensive project such as a reroofing, because the majority of their savings will be spent on their new property. Consequently, a lot of prospective buyers will simply not consider placing offers on houses with old or damaged roofs. In view of this, replacing your roof prior to selling may turn out to be a more worthwhile investment than you’d think. Specifically, the addition of a new roof is thought to return about two-thirds of the installation cost in how much it increases your home’s resale value.
Home Office Conversion
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to huge swathes of people embracing homeworking. Consequently, many buyers may now view office space as a necessity, as opposed to a luxury. The presence of a home office may also be appealing to families, who require areas for children to study. The price of adding a home office naturally depends on how you go about doing so since this can be done by simply repurposing existing areas, or by fully converting garages, attics, or basements. However you achieve this, though, home offices appear to be a very worthwhile investment, nowadays. Some estimates put the increase in property value for a home office at as much as 10%.