When it comes to home improvement projects, it’s important to know which ones actually add value to your home and which don’t increase your home’s value. Many of us think projects and renovations add value because WE appreciate those changes or additions to our property–don’t fall victim to that mindset.
Here are some renovations or upgrades that may not pay the dividends in the real estate market you think they should.
1) Swimming Pools: Even though South Florida would seem to be the perfect place to own or add a pool, that’s not always the case when it comes to increasing your home’s value. Many homebuyers, especially those with small children, tend to shy away from a home with a pool for various reasons including safety and yearly maintenance costs. If you’re buying a home that already has a pool that’s one thing but many homeowners who invest in a pool are often surprised those building costs don’t increase a home’s value as much as they thought it would.
2) Expensive Landscaping: So, you love all the plants, shrubs, palm trees and vegetation you’ve added to your property and you’re just sure all that work and invested money will increase your home’s value. The fact is, landscaping often does nothing more than add curb appeal to your home. There are those who don’t want the hassle of dealing with the constant growth, trimming, pruning, etc. of your precious landscaping. Bottom line; don’t expect eye-catching landscaping to increase your property’s value.
3) Overbuilding in Your Neighborhood: Many people don’t consider the homes that surround them when they decide to further develop their own home. The fact is, if your home has been upgraded to point that goes significantly beyond the norm for your neighborhood, it’s likely you’ll never get most of the money you’ve spent back when you decide to sell. If you have a $300,000 home (in upgrades and renovations) in a neighborhood of homes that sell for an average price of $200,000, you’ve overbuilt for your neighborhood. Most home buyers are most likely going to want to live in a home surrounded by other homes of similar value.
4) Upgrades That Are High-End: To add expensive counter tops, plumbing fixtures, cabinets, etc. will probably NOT increase your home’s value if there are other areas of the home that haven’t been upgraded. Granite counter tops are great in a home with consistent upgrades throughout the home but they’ll do nothing to increase your home’s value if the flooring or other areas of the home are “dated”. High-end homes with upgrades are far more likely to realize added value as opposed to mid-range homes with some expensive upgrades. If the upgrades are inconsistent with the rest of the house, don’t expect to get that money back at the time of sale.
5) Wall-To-Wall Carpeting: There are a lot of home buyers who just don’t want to deal with the expense of having to replace carpeting or the cost of cleaning it on a regular basis. There are even concerns these days about carpeting’s negative effects on health due to chemicals in its processing or even allergens. Bottom line, don’t expect the carpeting you love to be something potential home buyers love. You may even consider removing carpeting and restoring the flooring underneath if that’s a possibility.
Do your research before spending a lot of money on renovations, additions or upgrades to your home. Consult with a qualified real estate professional BEFORE you part with the money you think is going to improve your property’s value.
By spending a little time researching those “improvements”, you’ll minimize any surprises about the value of YOUR home when it comes time to consider selling.