If you take good care of your home, it will take care of you. You might have just moved in into your first property and are dreaming of moving into something more significant a few years down the line. So, you diligently maintain your property and keep a keen eye on the housing market. There is one way to speed things along and increase the value of your house, to get you to your next step quicker, which is to add improvements to your home. Sure, it is a bit of an investment up front, but if done correctly against reasonable costs. It can add significant value. To boot, you will be able to enjoy these improvements yourself for as long as you still opt to stay.
One word of warning though, you need to be realistic on how far on the expensive side you want to price and add value to your house, related to the average sale price in the neighborhood. Kitting out a home for it to be worth double of the average neighborhood price is not a good idea. What you want is stretching up the value of your house by a theoretical 15-25%. Keep it within reason and consider the following suggestions.
Adding another bedroom or bathroom to your house is a guaranteed value increaser. If you have an unused room such as a loft, you could turn this into something of more value. In most cases it comes down to making sure the flooring is OK, the walls are finished to a standard and making sure to add a few outlets to the room. Also important is to make sure there is enough light into the room. An extra room will add significantly more value, especially if you compare that to the relatively easy way this can be achieved.
In the same vein as changing the loft, you might want to consider changing your garage to a living space. Especially if you have a driveway on which you can park your car, a garage is an ideal space to create a secondary kitchen, utility room or a second living room. Or consider adding a gaming room to your house. Now we are talking luxury. It will also prevent you from using the garage as a glorified storage room.
If you are considering converting a garage and therefore are designating the area in front of your house to be a parking spot, you might want to consider paving the front garden. People love low-maintenance and getting rid of the garden for something more functional is a great way to score extra points. You could pave it or get some asphalt poured. Paving usually looks friendlier, but asphalting can be more durable and cheaper in the long run. So dependant on your own preference, you might want practicality over aesthetics.
One of the most eye-catching rooms in a house, especially to house hunters, is the bathroom. That means that a dated or bad looking bathroom will turn potential buyers off. Think of it this way, most other rooms will be transformed based on the furniture the new occupants will bring. This is also the mindset that house viewers will have walking through your house. The bathroom, however, is a fixed feature and if they don’t like it, or if it, to them, screams of needing a remodel, that not only brings along extra costs for the would-be buyers, but also an inconvenience. If you keep the bathroom up-to-date (no gaudy tiling or colors that remind you of your great-grandparents!) and functional, at least, in a house hunter’s mind, they can see themselves moving in already.
As with the bathroom, the kitchen is also one of those areas where you want to show the finished article. It’s not that hard to ensure you have an up-to-date look to it. Make sure all the kitchen cabinets are in working order and properly aligned. A clean worktop is also essential to new owners as built-in kitchen appliances, such as cookers and fridges. If you really want to impress people, you might want to consider bringing more light into the kitchen, which can be achieved by improvements such as bifold windows.
Speaking of light, another eye-catching feature would be adding a conservatory to your house. Obviously, something that is harder to do yourself and will require some investment, but it’s a great way to add an inviting place to your house and bring in more light.
In general, you want to let loads of light into the house and use every trick in the book. A lighter house, especially on the inside, looks more prominent. Think of light colors when it comes to paint and wallpaper. Use mirrors where you can to let the light bounce around. Add touches of green, such as hardy plants, to your living areas. The general vibe you want to go for, especially on viewing days, is open, neutral, full of life and potential.
And if you are paving your front garden, you might want to spruce up the back yard. Consider keeping it simple and focus on areas where people can sit and entertain others. A deck would be perfect, especially with room for a gas-powered barbeque, or lights to turn on during evenings. A firepit would be nice as well. The key is that you make this area an extension of the living space. Would-be homebuyers will take this into account when viewing a house and playing to that idea will increase desirability.
So, there you have it, a set of ideas to add value to your home. Again, it is essential to be realistic and avoid outpricing yourself relative to the neighborhood you’re in. Also, when making improvements, try not to cut corners. If you are confident in your abilities, go right ahead and make these changes yourself. But when it comes to paving driveways, installing conservatories and bi-folding windows, you might want to consider hiring a specialist. Great features add value to your house, but poorly installed features actually will reduce the value.