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5 Ways to Increase Your Home's Value

February 18, 2022
Interior view of the kitchen with an island in light wood tones in a Brookfield Residential home

A home is a major investment. For this reason, owning a home can lead to a desire to increase its value. There are many ways to increase the value of your home. While you can’t change the more permanent aspects, such as a home’s location and the value of the surrounding homes, you have plenty of other tools at your disposal.

Making updates to your home, inside and out, will often add value to your home. Whether you are hoping to build equity or increase the price when it comes time to sell, these updates may make all the difference between just owning a home and making a sound investment.

Many upgrades can be made by homeowners themselves. Here is a breakdown of five great options.

1. Add Curb Appeal

Buyers look at a home from the inside out. That’s why even the smallest enhancements to your home’s curb appeal can add value to your home.

Changing the appearance of the home’s exterior, as well as the yard, driveway and other outdoor spaces, can lend coherence and style to a home’s look. Keeping outdoor spaces clean and tidy contributes to the appearance of a well-maintained home.

To add curb appeal to your home, you can:

  • Powerwash the exterior to freshen it up
  • Repave the driveway and walkway areas
  • Update the house numbers and mailbox
  • Edge lawns and keep the yard and other landscaping tidy
  • Restain or paint the front door and outside trim

Adding a new garage door for a total cost of $3,907 can offer more appeal to your home’s exterior and you may be able to recoup 93.8% of that in the sale. That’s if it follows the 2021 national average for garage door replacement, according to a 2021 Cost vs. Value report conducted by Zonda Media.

2. Update the Kitchen and Bathrooms

Updated kitchens and bathrooms can’t be beat for increasing the value of your home. Modern conveniences in these rooms are a signal to buyers that the home is functional and up-to-date.

Since kitchens and bathrooms are high-use areas of the home, they sometimes need updates more than other areas. Add a few luxury pieces, like upscale fixtures, a soaker tub or soft-close cabinets.

A minor kitchen update can offer a good return upon resale while you enjoy it in the meantime. You may be able to recoup the national average of 72.2% of the cost for a midrange, minor kitchen remodel according to the Zonda report.

The scale of kitchen and bathroom updates depends on your budget. A larger budget could offer the opportunity for a thorough “gut job,” in which big items like cabinets, tubs and shower stalls are replaced. Even modest budgets may allow you to simply refresh a kitchen or bathroom. On a smaller scale, replacing countertops, faucet fixtures or even cabinet doors are solid upgrades.

Updating the look and style of kitchens and bathrooms helps to add value to your home too. To update, you can focus on giving the room a fresh paint job, replacing dated light fixtures or swapping out accessories, like shower curtain rails, towel bars and lightswitch plates.

3. Up the Square Footage

Many homeowners choose to add on to a home to increase its square footage and add to its value.

According to Homelight, “In 2020, 44% of real estate agents cited the ‘need for more space’ as the no. 1 moving motivator.” While additions can be costly, the increase in a home’s value may be worth it for you.

Popular home additions include:

  • Second stories
  • Space for guests, including bedrooms and en suite bathrooms
  • Indoor-outdoor sunrooms
  • More spacious master suites
  • Larger, open-concept kitchens

Before considering an addition, you should take a step back and look at the home from a buyer’s perspective. Is there one particular room that feels cramped? Is there “something missing,” like space for guests or a kids’ play area? Ask yourself these questions when deciding whether or not to add on.

4. Make it Energy Efficient

Homebuyers are increasingly concerned with a home’s energy efficiency. So making a home more energy efficient, or at least energy-conscious, often increases value. When making energy upgrades, the goal is to increase the efficiency of a home’s use of resources like heat and electricity.

Conserve energy in these home areas:

  • Replace the front door. Newer doors may offer more secure edges than older doors, allowing less air to leak in or out through gaps.
  • Replace old windows. Contemporary windows are also more likely to prevent leaks.
  • Add insulation. Proper insulation keeps warm or cool air in and also prevents noise from traffic or neighbors.
  • Replace the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. Newer HVAC systems are almost always more energy efficient than older models.
  • Add ceiling fans. Fans reduce air conditioning use and use less electricity.

5. Freshen Up the Inside

Much can be done to update a home’s look without making major renovations. Changes as simple as painting walls with more contemporary colors can add to your home’s appeal and increase its value in the eyes of the market.

Begin by first assessing the home’s needs.

Make Small Repairs

Smaller repairs can make a big difference. Replace broken floor boards. Fix trim pieces around floors, doors and windows. Repair or replace drains, faucets and toilet parts.

Switch Up the Look

Update the look of a room by giving walls a fresh coat of paint. Refinish scuffed floors and restain tarnished or chipped molding and trim.

Upgrade Fixtures

Change outdated lighting, replacing fixtures with contemporary versions. Assess smaller fixtures, like curtain rods and lightswitches, for potential upgrades.

Whether you are making large or small updates to your home, Brookfield Residential can offer advice and insights. Check out the Brookfield Residential blog to learn more about creating a home that will increase in value.

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