Are you planning to sell an older home in a competitive market? Stay on top of the latest housing trends to understand what buyers are looking for, and consider a few key renovations to keep your home up to date and competitive with newer homes on the market.
Here are some valuable projects to consider as you get ready to sell:
Kitchens remain one of the most popular and profitable areas of your home to renovate, recouping on average 60% of the cost when it comes time to sell. While it can take several months to complete a major kitchen remodel that involves changing the floor plan, demolition or an addition, a minor refresh can go a long way to upgrading an outdated kitchen.
A minor remodel may include:
- – New flooring
- – Upgraded appliances
- – Replacing the sink and fixtures
- – Updated lighting
- – Refacing cabinets, installing new hardware
- – Fresh paint
Bathrooms are always high on a buyer’s list of priorities, meaning it’s worth the investment to refresh bathrooms that could use a facelift. You don’t necessarily need a total bathroom overhaul; small updates can do the trick. You may want to:
- – Replace the vanity
- – Install a new low-flow toilet
- – Update lighting and fixtures like faucets and towel racks
- – Upgrade the showerhead
- – Replace outdated tile
- – Recaulk or reglaze the bathtub
Increasing your home’s energy efficiency is one of the best ways to increase the home’s value before selling. A home that has been updated to current energy standards and saves money on utility bills is a plus for potential buyers, particularly if your home is older. There are several efficiency components you can consider including:
- – Replacing appliances with energy efficient models that incorporate smart technology, such as a programmable thermostat, or a water heater able to detect leaks
- – Installing energy efficient thermal windows, shown to decrease heating and cooling costs as well as reduce noise pollution
- – Adding additional insulation to your attic will reduce energy costs and improve efficiency
For a high-impact renovation that could significantly increase the sale price of your home, consider finishing your basement. A finished basement increases your home’s usable square footage without increasing its footprint, and is more cost-effective than an addition.
Before you begin, though, determine if your existing basement is a good candidate for finishing, or if adjustments need to be made to your plans. Make sure you or your contractor research local building codes and permits, including details like minimum ceiling height, required number of exits, and plumbing or insulation requirements. If your finished basement cannot pass a final inspection once completed, it won’t ultimately add value to your home or to a future buyer.
Fresh flooring throughout your home will improve its look and increase its value. While hardwood floors are an expense, they last a lifetime, and their easy upkeep and visual appeal to future buyers typically pays off. If your home already has hardwood floors, determine if they might benefit from refinishing. You might also consider replacing worn-out flooring with hard-wearing vinyl or laminate, especially in high-traffic areas, which can mimic the look and feel of hardwood with less expense.
Replace carpeting that’s worn out or stained with new carpeting in a neutral shade. Same goes for replacing tiles that are outdated, cracked or missing. Choose a neutral, timeless tile rather than a pattern that appeals only to you.
Improve your home’s curb appeal by freshening up the look of your front door. A fresh coat of paint or stain can make your home stand out. If it’s in your budget, consider replacing the door with an energy-efficient fiberglass or steel door that’s in character with your home’s exterior.
Do the same for your garage and replace an outdated or damaged garage door with an updated automatic model equipped with the latest safety features and technology.
Whether you’re hoping to sell soon, or in a few years, any renovation project you invest in should not only create value for future buyers, but also improve your own experience of living in your home. If you enjoy the outcomes of your remodeling project, chances are a future buyer will too.