How to increase the value of your home: cheap ways to add value and increase your equity.
Whether you are looking to enhance the beauty and functionality of your home for yourself or trying to make a solid sale:
A home is the representation of our inner self and inhabits lives for decades; we must realize that it makes sense to add items, remove some and alter certain aspects to increase the value. Now, of course, you can hire an interior designer and a whole assembly line to set up your home for tiptop luxurious appeal –
But that is not the only option:
This article is not just for those who want an improved home, but also for so many out there who are trying to sell the house at a good price.
Forbes quotes Adam Hade, an associate broker with Houlihan Lawrence, to make the case:
“Cheap tweaks can pay off big-time. ‘And even when these don’t equate to big dollars, they may help sell your property faster.’”
If you are looking for inexpensive ways to turn that house into a valuable home, look no further. The recommended aspects of a new exciting house await you. Read on and let this list illustrate the top 30 essential areas of improvement.
A kitchen will almost always inevitably become the top concern for those looking to buy a house. A place for community building and nourishment holds a special place for us all.
These are some key areas which usually require upgrades:
- Lighting fixtures
A heartening seating facility in the yard
You want the house to look comfy and spacious. But then you want to be able to make most of that space. A smart and efficient distribution adds value to the house. Consider setting up a table in the yard or the porch to say your home has a place for everyone.
It is important to never forget the most crucial aspects of th house. When unable to think of these things, ask yourself:
What do I usually notice and find important to me when I am at someone’s place?
One of the answers will be a bathroom. From a place of privacy to our personal needs, a bathroom says a lot about the house and level of attention that has been shown to the house.
Here are some key areas you can consider upgrading:
- Old fixtures
- Old Paint
- Overused and messy towels
- Shower and tiles which need some scrubbing and grease
It is small touch but somehow the look, the texture, the feel of it and how it physically opens to reveal a part of the house—
You have to admit there is something beautiful about the rather forgettable existence of a doorknob.
Try to go for doorknobs which are consistent with one another and the main décor of the house.
Efficient energy costs coupled with comfort skyrockets the desirability of your home. You understandably know by now the effect of a thermostat.
Thermostats account for a considerable chunk of the energy usage in the house. If not programmable, then you have no control over the bill.
Taking the temperature down a couple degrees can reduce the monthly costs significantly. Moreover, buyers will be sure to shortlist your home for this long-term savings ability when choosing a house.
Sometimes, as you have experienced, a new coat of paint not only makes the room new to our eyes but almost gives it a sense of different dimensions.
Be informed that potential buyers gravitate towards neutral colours.
Appliances following the colour scheme of the kitchen add to the resale value of the kitchen. If need be, order door panels and face panels for that. Even better, unscrew, flip around and screw it back into place.
Only when the budget permits, buy something new.
Outlet and light switches
Quite honestly, these items have a tendency of quickly turning into eyesores.
- Get new ones for it’s inexpensive
- Switch things up, get a little artsy and paint them in the colour of the walls
Long overdue organization
Do you remember just a while back when paint adding dimension to the house was mentioned?
Right, well, illusions aside, nothing shrinks up a house the way clutter does. Rid yourself of all the mess and clutter and free up some space.
This offers some much-needed relief to you and also gives the potential buyer an opportunity to visualize how they would like to populate this empty canvass.
Efficient storage options
Just because we talked about creating more space does not mean taking up space is a bad thing. It is all about creating an easy and fast way to help a person imagine a home here.
You have already done that by freeing up the counter, arranging the bookshelves and getting rid of old toys and trophies and badly patched up broken vases to make space.
However, if you can add some affordable and easy to install storage options such as colour scheme consistent shelves around the house—
It can help the potential buyer see where they can keep their valuables thus move a step closer to finding the home of their dreams.
You and everyone who lives in a house know – it is time to upgrade those fixtures. Maybe not all, but there are always those few ones which have been thorns to think about. The time has come for a re-do.
It adds a lot of character and depth to the house. Look into:
- Drawer pulls
- Cabinet handles
- And anything you come across
Looks matter and especially whatever comes in front of our eyes first will help us decide if we want to come inside the house to see its personality.
- There is no need to hire a landscaper. You are plenty capable
- Get rid of weeds
- No more brown shrubs
- Get new plants as replacements; plants which are native to the area, drought resistant and of low maintenance
Add a room(s)
An additional room can drive up interest from potential buyers by a long margin. Here are the inexpensive ways of doing it efficiently:
- Carefully analyse the rooms in the house
- Separate the vital spaces
- Focus on what could be altered: office, den, unused storage/utility/recreational room
- Now, add a closet there or a portable wardrobe
Voila! You have a new room.
This is a great addition. A vanity cabinet not only offers a chance for further storage but well-chosen designs can give the house an extended identity. Buyers will see this as a major takeaway after visiting your house.
Nobody can enjoy the house if they cannot see the house. All the new additions and upgrades go to waste if there is insufficient light. Even if there is, a light which does not compliment the overall colour scheme of the room does not help advance your cause at all.
- Outdated lighting fixtures should be upgraded
- Dim rooms need more light
- Check out the wattage before buying. Something adequately illuminating is needed here
There is only so much scrubbing and greasing you can do. At a particular point in time, that old faucet has to be replaced by a new one. It is non-negotiable.
There are plenty of affordable and attractive faucets out there. As mentioned before, a bathroom appeal goes a long way in making a home out of that house. You have made changes to the bathroom already, anyway. So why stop there?
Take a look at your toilet. Is it-
- Environmentally unfriendly?
- Not functioning as well as it used to?
Then in that case, there is no greater solution than getting a new toilet. Delaying is only going to make a bigger deal out of it.
We talked about the exterior; the landscaping and seating arrangement have all contributed greatly so far.
Do not stop there. Before a potential buyer or your own family members can enjoy it, before we get closer to experiencing the tactile nature of it, we must first lay out eyes upon it.
Visual senses must always be engaged with depth. Install some good lights, pretty up the house and repel robbers and burglars at the same time.
Call your tradesmen
It may seem like this article is focusing too much on external aspects. Alright, now let’s step into the beautiful house and go a layer inward.
Do not forget, the house has to be pretty, efficiently organized and safe. Certain things like this are best left to professionals.
- Call your neighbourhood tradesmen: plumber and electrician
- Check the electric usage
- Fix faulty and, or, exposed wires and outlets
- Detect water and gas leakage
- Fix it all up and present a safer & must-have home for the buyer
Try crown molding
Simply because we are following a rather inexpensive route in this article does not mean we want cheap looking homes. In fact, all ideas so far are about making your home even more beautiful and inviting.
What has not been highlighted is the jewel that stands apart—
This gives you the luxurious look and feel you wish for and offers a lot of creative ideas to make the house the most wanted property in the neighbourhood.
Floor tiles are sometimes the last thing we replace entirely. If you want to keep the old, discoloured tiles, then consider, at least, repainting them and giving the house the new base it deserves.
Or, just install new ones altogether.
Technology is a huge part of our lives. We need to incorporate it one way or the other. Install USB ports in the kitchen, living room and nightstands. A potential buyer will appreciate this home which thought of the future in a long-term way. Do not overlook these values.
Knock down a wall
You have tried a lot of things and if you still feel unsure about space and new ideas – start breaking stuff!
Here’s what real estate expert Elizabeth Gatlin has to say about knocking down that nagging, unnecessary wall:
“Knocking down a wall to open up space is incredible, and it isn’t very costly. Most people these days are looking for more connectivity in their homes. Buyers love seeing from one side of a house to another. Small compartmentalized spaces are so 50’s, they went out of style decades ago….The only thing you need to know is if the wall is indeed load bearing or not. Either hire a professional or if you feel confident go up to your attic and check how the structure is framed above the wall….The overall cost is fairly low considering the impact it can have on your property value and your home living.”
It may seem a little aggressive, but the freeing feeling and the opportunities for creative ideas which arise sure make it a worthwhile move.
Raise your blinds and shutters game
Here’s what needs to go:
- Vertical blinds
- Get new shutters
- Get wood blinds
- Consider plantation shutters for a premium look
A new front door
A front door is a gatekeeper which either makes for an inviting home or becomes as forgettable as you can imagine.
- Replace the front door
- Consider repainting it if working off of a tight budget
- Ensure the door is strong, visually appealing and keeps the house safe
- Try a new paint
Change your carpet or consider buying if you don’t own one already because—
- A carpet can quickly bring about a visual change in the furnishing
- It makes the room look cleaner
- Neutral coloured rugs are most appealing to buyers
- Has a long-lasting impact on the overall look of the house
Highlight the walkway
Now, let’s begin thinking about the curb not just visually and landscape-wise but as a guide. This is where a walkway best directs our eyes naturally to the entrance of the house. A symbol and a metaphor altogether.
Furthermore, whichever one you choose should be consistent with the look and build of the house. Uniformity never went out of style, remember?
Just the same way personal hygiene can impact how people are drawn to you, the lawn indicates the level of concern put forth by the owners towards the house or the disrepair it suffered.
A lawn in a poor condition may not encourage the buyer to step inside even if the above interior changes had been applied.
Lawn maintenance and its recovery value are quite lucrative. Take advantage of it as soon as possible.
Get a realtor’s take on it
Consult a realtor to make sure you get advice tailored to your house. A lot of the tips here still apply, but you can get some additions by speaking to your local realtor. That way you can get a good estimate of what best suits your house.
Follow a structured checklist
Did you miss anything? Here’s RhodyLife to help us create our own checklist:
The method to this whole renovation madness is to simply improve upon what is already there. Look for ways to fix instead of buying all the time. Get creative and breathe new life into your wonderful home. Buyers want something vibrant and homely; a cold, polished metropolis straight out of a science fiction graphic novel is not the goal here. Now, go out there and bring your ideas to life.
David Nicoll is a freelance writer who writes about finance, insurance and investment property related articles. He is always enthusiastic to promote local brands like St George Underwriting Agency, a leading landlord insurance provider in Australia.