Which home improvement projects provide the best return on the dollar at time of sale?
The best, easiest and least expensive home improvement project a homeowner can do would include fresh, updated, and relevant paint colors. Updating light fixtures, fans and hardware make a huge impact as well. Not only will it look more aesthetically pleasing a buyer won’t focus on the “dated” look of the house which then in turns allows them to start thinking about all the other “dated” items such as roofing, mechanical systems, plumbing, etc. These are all big ticket items that will be a huge expense to a buyer if they start thinking that they’re older. By updating the aesthetics, a buyer doesn’t go down that thought pattern. They instead are focused on the things that appeal to them rather than all the things that would be problems. In addition to that, any money spent on kitchens and baths always warrant a return on investment. Kitchens still sell homes.Decisions to buy a home are still made on the look, function and feel of the kitchen. With that said, baths that are clean, updated, functional and modern will appeal to all buyers. Buyers are willing to pay more for a house that is move in ready. Families today are too busy and overwhelmed with everyday life to take on these projects for the most part. Major renovations or updates a buyer may be forced to think about can deter them from buying that house and it will be easier for them to just move forward and look at the next house. When items need to be updated or replaced, it’s in the homeowners’ best interest to do that themselves. In a buyer’s mind, they will calculate the cost of improvements 3 to 5 times of what the actual cost will be. For example, if the carpet is stained and outdated, a homeowner can probably replace it for $1000 but if it’s not done, a buyer will look at that carpet and in their minds think “this will cost $5000 to replace the carpet in this room.” When they think that, they immediately deduct that amount from what they feel will be a fair market price for the house. By having it done, and move in ready, not only will it appeal to the buyer more, they prefer move in ready. A home that looks it’s best will make a buyer believe that it has been well maintained. This in itself, allows a buyer to feel more comfortable in making their best offer on the house. And afterall - that's what you want!