Top Home Improvements With the Biggest Return

Home improvements top the list of ways to increase the selling price of your home. Whether you’re handy with a hammer or a checkbook, the top home improvements are those with the biggest return on investment. Learning to spot the top home improvements will help your remodeling dollar go farther.

Top Home Improvements: A Return On Investment

Keeping up with the Joneses (sort of). The key to maximizing your home improvement investment is to keep the amenities in your home at the same level as those of your neighbors and in similar homes close by. Check out local open houses and tour model homes in new developments to get a good idea of what the competition has to offer. Your goal is to meet, but not exceed, the level of features available in homes of your size and price range.

From the outside in. If you live in a house, you’ll get a better than 80% return on investment for upgrading the exterior of your home. The top home improvement to the exterior of your home is replacing older siding with energy efficient, low maintenance materials. Save money on your roof—upgraded roofing will only improve your selling price if the roof needed repairs in the first place.

Someone’s in the kitchen. When it comes to the top home improvements in a home’s interior, it’s hard to beat an upgrade to the kitchen. The most popular room in the houses also gets the most use—and abuse. Modest improvements like resurfaced cabinets or replacing cabinet pulls will have the biggest return on investment, followed by upgraded countertops and flooring. Be careful of overspending on new appliances—most buyers won’t want to pay extras for high-end kitchen appliances.

Adding space. If you have an unfinished basement or attic, consider adding extra floor space to completing these areas. Adding space in an attic entails cheaper upfront costs and realizes a higher return than the same work done in a basement.

Good for you and the planet. Replacing older windows with energy efficient new ones will not only save money on your heating and cooling bills, they’ll give you a big return on investment when it comes time to sell your home. Hang on to your heating bills so you can show perspective buyers the dramatic decrease in utility spending the windows provide.

Top Home Improvements That Won’t Break The Bank

A knock at the door. Replacing your old front door with a modern, energy efficient door is a top home improvement that won’t cost a lot. By some estimates, a new entry door will return as much as 125% when it comes time to sell your home.

Painted into a corner. Painting your home is a cheap investment that will pay off handsomely. For less than $100 (if you do the work yourself), you can improve the look of a room and increase the value of your home. Stick with neutral colors if you choose to repaint. Also, don’t forget the ceilings—many buyers will be looking up to check for leaks or water damage.

Simply green. Improve the curb appeal of your home by adding new landscaping to your outdoor space. Neatly planted flowerbeds are inexpensive to install and will give your home extra pop when buyers come to call. Not interested in a big make over? Consider placing several plant containers around your property to provide quick and easy color.


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