When it comes to home improvement projects, it can be difficult to know which upgrades are worth the investment and which ones won’t add anything meaningful to your home’s value. While some projects can be worth the investment due to the value they provide in quality of life, most homeowners want to keep one eye on their home’s equity when doing any kind of significant improvement or renovation.
It’s important to combine both function and utility, but given the ever-changing nature of the housing market, the best investment ideas can fluctuate depending on current trends. If you’re considering any type of work on your house in the near future, read on to learn more about four of the most valuable home renovations right now.
1. Stick to a smaller kitchen remodel.
When it comes to upgrading your kitchen, it’s important to be smart about the changes you make if you don’t want to lose money. Almost every home buyer wants and expects a modern kitchen with appliances and countertops that are up to date with current technology, so it’s necessary that you don’t fall behind the times. Smart technology is more popular than ever, especially with kitchen appliances like the stove, refrigerator, or oven.
Even smaller interior design changes, like adding a backsplash, a fresh coat of paint, or getting new countertops or kitchen cabinets, are great ways to update the look of the room, without breaking the bank or requiring a complete overhaul. Housing professionals suggest that kitchen renovations that are too large or go over budget can wind up being money pits that cost a homeowner more than they’ll ever be worth. A kitchen renovation is definitely necessary, but it’s essential that you keep it targeted and reasonably priced.
2. Invest in quality landscaping.
Landscaping is often overlooked, but it can add to the curb appeal of your home in a meaningful way. Experts say that exterior improvements like landscaping typically have a positive return on investment for homeowners, and make a big difference for buyers who are choosing between different properties. Even if you don’t want something elaborate, replacing mulch, adding some colorful flowers, and having trees and shrubs professionally shaped can change the look of your yard significantly.
3. Go Green
One new trend in housing is that buyers are prioritizing homes that are eco-friendly, and it’s likely that will only continue as green technology saturates the market and prices continue to become more affordable. Additions as large-scale as solar panels and as small-scale as switching to LED light bulbs can make a huge difference when it comes to selling your home to a buyer who cares about the environment. Smart technology like an HVAC system with automation and a timer can also help you reduce your energy usage, and having multiple pieces of smart technology can allow them to work with each other and make your life even easier.
4. Don’t neglect home maintenance.
While adding new things to your home is exciting, upkeep of the appliances and fixtures you already have is just as important. Keeping gutters unclogged and your roof in order are two of the most important household repairs to move to the top of your list, as neglect can end with damage to the foundation of your house that will be quite costly to fix later.
Anyplace in your home that uses grout should have the grout resealed every ten years. Cracks and crevices in your doors and windows that are left to worsen can let drafts into your house that end up driving up your energy consumption, and thus, your monthly utility bills. Experts also recommend that your HVAC system be inspected at least once yearly and replaced entirely every 10-15 years. Regular home maintenance is the best way to avoid unnecessary and costly renovations down the line.
When you’re looking for improvements that you can make around the house, there’s a lot to consider. Managing function and a positive return on your investment is always a good idea, but it isn’t as easy as it sounds. It can be frustrating to realize you have a long way to go before you can break ground on your renovations, but they say “Cut once, measure twice” for a very good reason. It takes time and works to balance the needs of potential buyers and your own, but it can be done. If you’re thorough and careful in your planning, your home improvements will help you create the house of your dreams sooner than you might think.