5 of the Most Valuable Home Upgrades

Cardinal Financial March 16, 2018 | 4 min read
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Add major equity to your property with these five home upgrades.

Home renovations are in. From the fun, DIY couples on TV to your next-door neighbors, it seems like everybody is getting in on home upgrades and the house flipping trend. House flipping has become a lucrative source of income for many people across the country, and while that may not be your thing, there are plenty of upgrades that you can make to your own home to make it more valuable when it comes time to sell.

1. minor bathroom remodel

When it comes to valuable home upgrades, the best pace to start is in the bathrooms. There’s no need to go all out here—minor bathroom upgrades can get you even more money back at resale than you spent to make the renovations without expansion or adjusting the layout. It’ll cost you around $10,500 to replace the tub, tile, floor, toilet, sink, vanity, and fixtures, but on average you’ll get back $10,700 upon resale, which is good for a 102% recoup rate. Tasks such as re-caulking a tub can be done yourself, and if your tub is too big to replace, you can simply re-glaze it to make it look brand new.

2. landscaping

Ever thought your home could use a little something extra? Well, landscaping is an excellent way to add curb appeal and resell value to your home. The average homeowner spends about $3,500 for landscaping services and around $1,500 on a designer. However, the average return at resale for these home upgrades is 100%! Not bad for a few extra plants out front. It’s a bit deeper than that, but many local garden centers offer free design services, so get with an expert and see what elements you can add to give your property some added flair. Focal points such as walkways and fountains have been known to add major value to homes as well, so bring out those gloves and get ready to work.

There are plenty of upgrades that you can make to your own home to make it more valuable when it comes time to sell!

3. minor kitchen remodel

When it comes to kitchens, in most cases it’s more efficient to skip the full-blown floor plan overhaul and just go with a minor remodel. This approach is much cheaper and on average will recoup about 98.5% of its $15,000 cost. Minor remodels are usually the better option when your kitchen is simply in need of a cosmetic update rather than a completely different floor plan. A $15,000 kitchen update usually will cover cabinet and drawer refacing, a new wall oven, cooktop, sink and fixtures, countertops, and flooring. Experts suggest you add new lighting and change the drapes and window molding to get the maximum value out of this home upgrade.

4. turn your attic into a bedroom

Looking to add some extra living space to your home? Turning your attic into a bedroom not only gives you an extra room to house guests or rent out, it also adds quite a bit of value to your home. The average attic bedroom in a two- or three-bedroom house costs around $39,000 and will return about $36,600 at resale, good for a recoup rate of 93.5%. That $39,000 price tag includes a 15 x 15 ft. bedroom, a 5 x 7 ft. bathroom with shower, a 15 ft. dormer, four windows, and a closet. Adding attic insulation will lower your utility bills and a solar-powered fan is another great way to keep energy costs down for the additional space.

5. Add a deck, patio, or porch

A standard-sized, pressure-treated wooden deck with a simple pattern costs about $11,000 and can add about $10,000 to the value of your home, a recoup rate of 90%. One of the main advantages of owning a home is having yard space, so it makes sense that a feature that takes advantage of that space would recoup well. Small improvements and eye appeal elements such as lighting, plantings, and railings can make a big impact when it comes time to close. Depending on the weather in your region, these outdoor elements are a welcome home upgrade that home buyers will surely pay for.

Do you have any advice to offer on home upgrades? Tell us all about it on social media!

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