Increasing the Value of Your Home: 10 Tips + One for Good Measure

A man’s home is his castle but that doesn’t mean a castle doesn’t need it’s fix me ups. Making investments and improvements to your home can go a long way in adding value. Either selling now or simply planning for the future adding to the value of your home is always a wise investment.

Even if you’re not planning to sell your home anytime soon, it’s an inevitable question when you consider remodeling: How much will this improvement add to the value of my home?

Surprisingly, much of the time the answer is not as much value as it costs to actually make the improvement. But some home renovations bring you more bang for your buck than others.

So what do you do to your house to increase its value? There are numerous ideas and opinions on how to do this but many can agree it doesn’t take a huge budget to accomplish a lot. Here are some easy improvements to increase your home’s worth.

1. Take tips from the pros: Invite a realtor or interior designer over to check out your home. In an hour they can give you lots of ideas for needed improvements. Even small suggested improvements, such as paint colors or furniture placement, could go a long way toward improving the look and feel of your home.

2. Add storage to your space: This will have the duel purpose of providing potential buyers with more storage but also establish an organized atmosphere in your home. You don’t need to fill every open spot in your house with cabinets or wardrobes, but there are probably a few simple additions you can make that will tie a room together.

3. Light it up: Ensuring your home is properly lit noticeably enhances a home’s appeal. Remember high wattage bulbs make small spaces feel larger, and soft lighting brings warmth to empty spaces.

4. Paint the town: One of the simplest, most cost-effective improvements of all is paint! Freshly painted rooms look clean and updated — and that spells value. When selecting paint colors, keep in mind that neutrals appeal to the greatest number of people, therefore making your home more desirable.

5. Go green: More and more homeowners are looking to energy efficiency for saving costs and maximizing their utilities. An energy-efficient home will save you money now, which can be applied to other updates, and is a more valuable and marketable asset in the long run.

6. Build an oasis: Bathroom updates are always a smart move. Even if you can’t afford a full remodel, small changes such as replacing dated wallpaper with a faux or textured finish and replacing old lighting will update the room without denting your wallet.

7. Focus on flooring: Check if your carpets or flooring are in good condition. If they need to be replaced, choose environmentally friendly natural products like tile or laminate floors. Hard-surface floors are much easier to keep clean, don’t hold odors, give your home an updated look and, in general, are more appealing to buyers.

8. Make a list: Start by making two lists — upgrades for your home value and upgrades just for you. Upgrades for your home may consist of replacing old faucets, permanent lighting and doors. Upgrades for you are furniture, artwork and window treatments. Gone is the dartboard approach to picking projects and wondering if what you are doing is really making a difference. With this plan, you will see real progress.

9. Inspect it: Not every home improvement is cosmetic. Deteriorating roofs, termite infestation or outdated electrical systems — you can’t fix it if you don’t know it’s broken. Hire an inspector to check out the areas of your home that you don’t normally see. They may discover hidden problems that could negatively impact your home’s value.

10. Plant a tree: If you aren’t planning to sell your house today, plan for the future with a landscaping improvement that will mature over time. Plant shade trees — not only will mature trees make your home more desirable but a fully grown, properly placed tree can cut your cooling costs by as much as 40 percent.

11. Love your front door: The top-ranking home improvement? A new front door, which on average adds 96.6 percent of the amount you spent to the value to your home, according to Remodeling magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report for 2014. Even painting your existing door can do a lot to adding to the curb appeal of your home.

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