Some renovations can increase your home’s value significantly, and others not so much. Some renovations can actually decrease your home’s value or force you to lower your asking price. So if you’re getting your house ready to sell, you want to make only those improvements that add value and avoid those that simply cost you money. So here are our picks for the 6 best renovations to add value before selling your house.
1. Garage Door Replacement
Of all the renovations to add value before selling your house, replacing your garage door may offer the best ROI. In fact, according to experts, a new, “good-looking garage door tops the list when it comes to getting cash back when you decide to sell your house.” It will go a long way toward enhancing curb appeal and “will get you back almost every dollar you spent on it when you sell.”
Based on the costs for 16-foot by 7-foot garage door (for removal/disposal of old door and installation of a new door), here’s what you will be looking at. The average cost of this renovation runs about $3,600. But the average resale value is just over $3,500, which is an impressive 97+% return on investment.
2. Installing Manufactured Stone Veneer
Next in line among the best renovations to add value before selling your house is replacing some vinyl siding with manufactured stone veneer. This usually works best in an entryway to further enhance curb appeal. Although this is a merely cosmetic renovation, it will appeal to buyers and get them in the door to see more. And even better, this “accent design element is likely to catch the eye of a potential buyer and can allow you to recoup nearly 95 percent of your renovation cost.”
3. Deck Addition
If you have a yard big enough to aesthetically accommodate it, adding a wood deck can also be a smart move. It will appeal to buyers as an enhancement of their outdoor living experience at your house. “The average cost of adding a wooden deck from scratch (estimated based on a 16-by-20-foot deck, including a railing system with pressure-treated wood posts, railings, and balusters) is approximately $13,353. But the good news is that this feature . . . can hold more than 75 percent of its value come sale time.”
4. Reasonable Kitchen Upgrade
A kitchen is the heart of a home and is, typically, the most important room for buyers. So a kitchen renovation or upgrade can be among the best renovations to add value before selling your house – if it is reasonable and not overly grandiose. Remodeling pros maintain that you “can expect to recoup 60%-120% of your investment on a kitchen remodel, as long as you don’t go overboard. You should never make your kitchen fancier than the rest of the house, or the neighborhood.”
The consensus among those in the know is that the size, style, and quality of your kitchen must fit with the rest of your house. An extravagant kitchen renovation, then, may actually push buyers away. “If you plan to sell . . . keep potential buyers in mind before you start on any major remodel; many people won’t pay for a fancy, deluxe kitchen.
5. Installing Energy-Efficient Windows
Today, energy efficiency is important to homebuyers. It may not be top of mind, but it’s an important consideration for them nonetheless. And this means that replacing old windows with energy-efficient windows is one of the best renovations to add value before selling your house.
According to the experts, the benefits include:
- Savings of up to $500 a year on heating and cooling costs
- Ability to recoup 60% t0 90% of your installation costs
- Availability of a green energy tax credit of 10% for this upgrade
- Potential for additional state or utility-company credits
6. Adding Energy-Efficient Insulation
As with energy-efficient windows, adding energy-efficient insulation will also appeal to buyers and so is among the renovations to add value before selling your . This is especially true of older houses that have little or no insulation and are hard to heat and cool.
Adding insulation in the attic is, of course, the first step, but there’s more you can do. In particular, you should seal up any cracks or places where you detect drafts or cold spots, including:
- Around windows and doors
- Around electrical outlets and switches
- Around the attic-access hatch
- In recessed lighting
- In the basement
- Around ductwork and wiring entering/exiting the house
This doesn’t cost much and can be a strong selling point.
Consult Your Agent
Although you won’t see as much of a return on improvements as you would have during the housing market peak of 2004-2005, these renovations can still add value. The trick is to concentrate on those improvements that most appeal to buyers and promise the best return on investment. It might be a good idea, then, to consult your agent about the best renovations to add value before selling your house. For things can vary widely from local market to the local market. Find out how our agents can assist you.