Clever Tips that Will Help You Increase Your Home’s Value

Shannon Quinn - August 15, 2022
Universal design is making a home accessible to any age or handicap status. Credit: Shutterstock

22. Improve The Home’s Universal Design

Many of you have heard of the concept of “forever home”, but few people have the foresight to imagine how they can age in place. “Aging-in-place or universal design is gaining traction among baby boomers who’d rather continue to live in their homes than have to move later in life. Universal design involves reworking a home so it functions for wheelchair mobility and adds safety features like grab bars in convenient places.”

Installing a ramp in your home is an example of universal design Credit: Shutterstock

According to Angi, it costs anywhere between $790-$7,970 to renovate your home so that it has a universal design. And in some cases, it’s going to be impossible. For example, if you have a two-story home and eventually reach a point where you can no longer walk the stairs, that may cut off your access to the upstairs. (Unless you pay for something like a chair lift or install an elevator.) This is why some people choose to retire in one-story homes where it’s easy to access every part of the house, even if you were handicapped in some way. (via Family Handyman)

Stone veneer can add value to your home. Credit: Shutterstock

21. Add Stone Veneer

People love the look of stone veneer. It instantly makes a house look more luxurious. And in some cases, it can make your home look like a castle. It’s also a huge selling point for potential buyers looking to buy your house. According to Homelight, “In a midrange home, replacing a 300-square-foot band of existing vinyl siding from the bottom third of the street-facing facade with adhered manufactured stone veneer costs an average of $10,386 but recovers about 92% of that at resale, according to Remodeling magazine’s 2021 Cost vs. Value Report.”

Stone veneer is a popular choice for improving your home’s curb appeal. Credit: Shutterstock

Considering that stone veneer is very heavy and can be tricky to install, we recommend hiring professionals to do it for you. However, like most things on the Internet, there are going to be plenty of video tutorials on Youtube available for you to check out. So if you already own a pickup truck, you may be able to save some money by buying, transporting, and installing the stone veneer on your own. (via Homelight)

Skip buying water bottles with a water filtration system. Credit: Shutterstock

20. Install a Water Filtration System

Something that few people consider as an addition to the value of their home is the quality of their water supply. “Install a water filtration system in your kitchen. Not only do these systems purify your water, they will also lower your grocery bills — no more bottled water. A water filtration system is an inexpensive addition, but it’s the sort of small luxury that homebuyers love.”

Your buyers may not be able to see the filtration system until the open the cabinet doors. Credit: Shutterstock

The cost of a water filtration system is going to vary drastically depending on what kind you get installed. For example, a carbon filter system can cost as little as $50, while a reverse osmosis system may cost as much as $4,000. It’s also something that may be missed during home tours if you’re thinking of selling your house. For more of a show-and-tell sort of water filter, consider buying one of those over-the-faucet water filters, which cost under $40. (via HGTV)

Replacing your roof may be one of the best investments you can make. Credit: Shutterstock

19. Replace the Roof

One of the best things you can do to help improve your home’s value is to install a new roof. On average, a new roof will last between 20 to 50 years, depending on the materials you choose. It helps to protect the home from the elements, and ensures that other parts of the house stay in good condition. Without a good roof, many other parts of the home may start to crumble from water damage. So when potential buyers hear that you recently replaced the roof, it can be a huge selling point.

Always hire professionals to do your roof, because it takes an entire time to get the job done. Credit: Shutterstock

“A new roof can increase home value, but you might not see a 100% return on investment — very few improvements, if any, offer a full recoup of money spent. But even if you don’t see a huge financial return, a new roof can make you more likely to get full asking price, lower time on market and smoother negotiations.” (via Zillow)

Outdoor kitchens have become increasingly popular during the pandemic. Credit: Shutterstock

18. Install an Outdoor Kitchen

“Once viewed as an add-on reserved for luxury homes, these days, it appears everyone wants an outdoor kitchen. In addition to a built-in grill, outdoor kitchens often include features such as cabinets, a bar, a sink, standard kitchen appliances, and sometimes a flat-screen TV. They can be lavish or basic, depending on the budget.”

If you had an outdoor kitchen like this, you’d have no shortage of home buyers. Credit: Shutterstock

“The value an outdoor kitchen adds to a home has increased from an estimated $6,100 pre-pandemic to $9,800 in the current market. Has it always been your dream to make shrimp scampi al fresco and serve it to guests al fresco? Go for the outdoor kitchen — buyers will love it for the same reasons when the time comes to sell.” (via Homelight)

Adding on a deck increases the amount of outdoor space you have at your disposal. Credit: Shutterstock

17. Add on a Deck

Earlier on this list, we mentioned how important it is to have a front porch nowadays, especially in this pandemic world. Having a back porch or deck is equally, if not more important. People love to enjoy a deck in the privacy of their own backyard, where they can barbecue or even lounge by the pool.

You may want to hire a professional to install a new back porch for you. Credit: Shutterstock

“On average, homeowners spend just over $16,000 to add new wooden decks, but only see the resale value of their homes increase by $11,000, which is about 66% in recouped costs. Though, if restoring a wood deck is an option, it can be a smart investment” (via Extra Space)

Make your home low maintenance for future buyers who want to move in without worries. Credit: Shutterstock

16. Make Your Home Low-Maintenance

“Since many home buyers worry about buying a home that will need constant maintenance, replacing a major component before putting it up for sale — like the furnace, water heater or even the roof — may calm fears of an emergency repair in the near future and help get you a higher price. Improvements that make things easy to clean and maintain may also increase home value. Consider replacing easily stained carpet with hardwood floors or replacing high-maintenance wood siding with vinyl siding.”

Get the hard work done before you sell, to make life easier for potential buyers. Credit: Shutterstock

If you’re not sure which improvement your home needs the most, consider hiring a home inspector. They will go through your house and let you know what appliances and major components need to be updated first. Or, ask an experienced friend- or even your parents- for advice on what to fix first. Getting an outside opinion on your home is sometimes exactly what we need in order to see what’s best for making the house low-maintenance for others. (via NerdWallet)

Popcorn ceilings are outdated, and should be removed as soon as possible when you upgrade your house. Credit: Shutterstock

15. Remove Popcorn Ceilings

“What’s on your ceiling? Few structural elements date a house more than popcorn ceilings. So dedicate a weekend to ditching the dated look and adding dollar signs to the value of your home. NOTE: some older ceilings could contain asbestos so before undertaking this project, have yours tested by professionals.”

Check your ceiling for asbestos before you continue doing the entire room. Credit: Shutterstock

If you want to remove the popcorn ceiling on your own, this is actually an easy project to do. There are also asbestos kits that you can buy from hardware stores, and have a sample sent to a lab. Just be careful and wear an N95 mask. Take all precautions before going ahead with your DIY project. (via HGTV)

With a backyard like this, people would be fighting to put in an offer. Credit: Shutterstock

14. Build a Fire Pit or Outdoor Patio

“When it comes to what features buyers like to see in an outdoor space, 54% of top real estate agents HomeLight surveyed cited a fire pit as one of their top priorities. This provides a cozy setup for friends and family to gather even when the evenings get chillier. A separate survey also found that outdoor fireplaces have increased in value since March 2020, from adding an average $3,300 dollars in value to over $5,700 in value since the pandemic began.”

Outdoor fire pits have become increasingly popular in recent years. Credit: Shutterstock

Of course, if you want the cheaper version of this, you can buy a fire pit for roughly $100. This won’t necessarily add to the value of your home, but it gives you and your family the option of enjoying a fire outside at night. However, don’t use a fire pit like this on the grass, because it will kill it. Even with the cheaper fire pits, it’s best to do it over stone or sand if you have that available to you. (via Homelight)

The exterior door may need to be replaced if it’s old and losing heat. Credit: Shutterstock

13. Replace the Exterior Door

“Replacing an old front door can work wonders for curb appeal. The front of the home is the first thing you, your neighbors and prospective buyers will see. Garage doors often take up the most amount of space on the front of your home, so installing a modern glass panel door or a rustic wood door will dramatically improve your home’s appearance.”

A new front door can seriously add a lot of curb appeal to your home. Credit: Shutterstock

Replacing your door is not just about aesthetics, either. In many cases, replacing your front door means that you’re helping your home with energy efficiency. We recommend finding a steel frame store to keep in the heat of your home. The cost of replacing an exterior door goes anywhere from a few hundred dollars up to $1,000. And the cost of a garage door is anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000. (via Bankrate)

Always remember to change the air filter. Credit: Shutterstock

12. Improve the Air Quality

When you’re getting ready to sell your home, make sure you’re set up for the highest quality of air. Service or replace your HVAC system, and replace the air filter. If you have an AC unit, you may need to clean or repair the machine at least once a year as well. People will be able to tell the quality of your air once they walk into your home for a tour. No one wants to buy a place that’s stuffy.

Hire someone to clean and maintain your air conditioning unit. Credit: Shutterstock

“Air quality isn’t just about the conditions outdoors. If you have older carpets in your home, they might be hiding contaminants and allergens. The first step to determine if these need replacing is to hire a professional company to test your indoor air quality. If the results prove that your carpets should be replaced, choose environmentally friendly natural products like tile or laminate floors. Hard-surface floors are much easier to keep clean, don’t hold odors, give your home an updated look and, in general, are more appealing to buyers.” (via HGTV)

Hire a professional to install a new ceiling fan in your home. Credit: Shutterstock

11. Install Ceiling Fans

Speaking of air quality, you should consider installing ceiling fans. These cost around $100-$200 each, and should be installed in some of the major rooms of the house. Potential home buyers like to see ceiling fans because they know that there is the option for them to use. It doesn’t matter if you have central AC And heating. Air flow is still important to the value of a home.

A high quality ceiling fan can add a lot of style to a room. Credit: Shutterstock

“They give a room character and its own source of air movement. Ceiling fans come in a wide range of prices depending on the size, style, and ​quality of ceiling fan. Adding ceiling fans to rooms like bedrooms, the living room, or family room will add value to your home immediately.” (via The Spruce)

Always hire a professional to replace your windows. Credit: Shutterstock

10. Replace Your Windows

On average, it costs between $200 to $1,200 to replace a window. It varies drastically depending on the size, materials, and labor needed to replace it. Some people try to replace their own windows to save money, but the project truly is difficult. In many cases, you might want to leave this to the professionals. The last thing you want to do is drop your brand new windows down from the second story.

Older single pane windows like this are not energy efficient. Credit: Shutterstock

Once you replace the windows, it truly is worth it. This can help with saving energy on heating and cooling, but it’s also something that people will notice right away. “Addressing your windows isn’t just window dressing. Potential buyers will notice them and so do appraisers. Vinyl and wood have comparable recoup rates but wood has a higher average cost and nearly one percent less recoup rate.” (via Family Handyman)

Modern day buyers love to see smart objects in homes. Credit: Shutterstock

9. Add On “Smart” Objects

“Safety-enhancing gadgets top the list of ‘smart’ technologies buyers want in their new homes, according to a 2018 survey by Coldwell Banker. These safe and smart devices include thermostats, fire detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, security cameras, door locks and lighting. While smart tech doesn’t always increase home value, it does add appeal. Those who see themselves as “techies” are more likely to pay more for these items. Unlike replacing the roof or renovating the bathroom, you can usually install these devices yourself for about $1,000 or less.”

A Ring doorbell is one of the most affordable gadgets you can install in your home. Credit: Shutterstock

Adding smart objects to your home will become more important if you live in an urban area. Anywhere that young people in their 20’s and 30’s are moving to will be a huge plus if you can add smart objects. For example, a Ring doorbell costs around $200, and it’s something that potential buyers will notice as soon as they walk up to the front door. It’s a small cost to pay for making a great first impression. (via NerdWallet)

Painting a wall a neutral color is more valuable. Credit: Shutterstock

8. Paint Walls a Neutral Palette

“Light, neutral wall colors make for a good palette for resale because buyers can imagine their belongings in the space, our experts say. They also help your home look its best in online photos and listings. Paint is the cheapest thing you can do, and it brings such value. It brings people in the door. When every room is a different color and you look at it online, it looks like you’re going through an Easter egg hunt. When you have all the same color, each picture flows into the next one.”

Choose a neutral color palette if you’re planning to sell your home. Credit: Shutterstock

When you’re looking to paint your rooms a neutral palette, you can pick from whites, grays, or beiges. Basically anything light. Remember that if your room was painted dark before, it’s going to take a few coats of primer and paint before you can tone it down again. Another great thing about painting your home with a neutral palette is that it gives the illusion of the space being larger. If you have a small condo or house that you’re trying to sell, check out our article on Genius Design Hacks to Make Small Homes Feel Spacious. (via Homelight)

Giving your home new exterior siding may be a good investment. Credit: Shutterstock

7. Replace Exterior Siding

When you have been living in a house for years, you may be so accustomed to seeing your exterior siding that you are blind to the little imperfections that have formed there. The good thing about siding is that it can be painted, or you can replace pieces as-needed. A good power wash is also an option, and can make your siding look brand new again.

Always hire professionals to do the siding on your house. Credit: Shutterstock

Of course, sometimes the siding is too far gone, and there is no other option than to replace all of it. “According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2018 Cost vs. Value Report, replacing siding increases home value by 76.7% of the project cost; for a mid-sized project valued at $15,072, you can recoup $11,554” (via Progressive Foam)

Replacing a carpet can be done in just a few hours. Credit: Shutterstock

6. Replace Carpets or Rugs

“Take a look at your home’s soft flooring. Are your carpets and area rugs stained or worn? Nothing turns buyers off more than the thought that they will immediately need to replace all of the flooring in a home. Ideally, you may want to replace them all, but if a limited budget puts a snag in that plan, start by replacing the carpet in the room that shows the most wear and tear and replace the others as your finances allow.”

Shop for carpets that look neutral and match the space. Credit: Shutterstock

Even if replacing a carpet only costs a few hundred dollars and one day of work, future buyers don’t always have that mindset. They want something that is move-in-ready. So never assume that the buyer will have the foresight to put it in their own budget. Also make sure the floors are vacuumed and cleaned professionally with a wet-dry vac before you have tours of your home. (via HGTV)

Installing vinyl flooring is easy to do on your own. Credit: Shutterstock

5. Install Hardwood or Vinyl Flooring

One of the most highly valued things that people look for in a home is hardwood floors. If you’ve seen any episode of Fixer Upper, you already know how Joanna Gaines lifts up the carpet for an older home in the hopes of finding original wood flooring underneath. Most buyers are also hoping for the same. So if you can do that to your own home, consider ripping up the carpets, sanding the floors, and staining them so that they show off their antique beauty.

Consider hiring a professional if you are installing true hard wood floors. Credit: Shutterstock

Of course, you can also pay to install brand new wood floors in a home, if there is just plywood hiding underneath your carpet. According to Bob vila, Installing hardwood flooring averages between $6 and $12 per square foot. On average, wood flooring costs between $3 and $7 per square foot for materials and $3 to $5 per square foot for labor. An estimate for installation of 1000 square feet of hardwood flooring runs between $6,000 and $12,000.” “As long as the wood floors are in good condition and well-maintained, they will have a higher resale value than laminate floors. Some flooring resale values are regional, but hardwood is a clear winner across the board. Also, even if you have high-quality laminate, your listing will still just say ‘laminate.'”

(via Carpet Captain)

Finishing a basement adds on extra square footage to a home. Credit: Shutterstock

4. Finish Your Basement

“If you have an unfinished basement, you might have room for storage, but you’re missing out on livable space for future buyers to enjoy— whether as a home office or space for entertaining. In fact, finishing a basement of 400 to 1,500 square feet has a potential ROI of up to 75%. You’re adding more heated square footage, which bumps up your house into another price bracket.”

A basement can easily be transformed into a guest room. Credit: Shutterstock

“Even among homes ranging from $250,000 to $400,000 in Georgia, an unfinished basement can add about $15,000 to $20,000. If finished, a basement can add even more — up to $40,000 or $50,000 to the asking price. Finishing a basement will run you $18,400 on average, but can cost up to $34,000, largely depending on your square footage. This project involves installing flooring, drywall, and paint, but it creates a “valuable blank canvas” for potential buyers.” (via Homelight)

Always hire professionals to replace your garage door for you. Credit: Shutterstock

3. Replace Your Garage Door

When you think about curb appeal, it is the impression that you get when you walk up to the front of someone’s house. If you have a garage with an old, dented door, people take notice to that. Sometimes, you can improve the look of the door by just painting it. But sometimes, there is no other option than to replace the door completely.

Buying a fancy garage door can seriously add to your curb appeal. Credit: Shutterstock

“According to HomeLight’s research, top agents say a new garage door costs an average $1,200 but adds an average $2,797 in resale value for a 133% ROI.” Of course, some garage doors cost much more than that, if you’re looking to install something stylish rather than basic. At the end of the day, do what’s right for you and your budget. (via Homelight)

Adding a paved driveway can help increase the value of your home. Credit: Shutterstock

2. Add a Parking Space

Depending on where you live, ample parking space might be like finding the holy grail. But no matter where you’re located, people always check to see how many cars they can fit in the driveway. Multiple adults may be living in the same home, but they also want to have guests over without crowding the street with cars. In urban areas, it’s especially rare to have a parking space. So if you can figure out a way to create one with gravel or pavement, this will always add value to your home.

Make sure your potential buyers have somewhere that they can park their car. Credit: Shutterstock

“Parking spaces are increasingly becoming like the veritable needle in the haystack and more and more homeowners are choosing to convert excess space in their property into valuable parking facilities. Adding a single parking space to your home could see your property’s value soar by 5%.” (via Deco Alert)

Metal mail boxes like this can be painted any color you like. Credit: Shutterstock

1. Replace Your Mailbox and House Numbers

Believe it or not, small touches like your mailbox and house numbers really grab buyers’ attention. You may have a beautiful home, but if you have an old and dented mailbox, it comes across as lazy. If you can’t even replace a mailbox, why would they want to even look inside or consider buying your house? Mailboxes cost less than $50 if you’re going for something standard from somewhere like Home Depot, or you can invest a bit more and get a stylish one for around $100 to $150.

House numbers can add a sense of elegance to the front of your home. Credit: Shutterstock

The same goes with house numbers. You need to make sure your house numbers are large and easy to see from the road. Nowadays, people get deliveries from Amazon and Uber Eats left and right. We need the drivers to be able to clearly see where you live, so there is absolutely no confusion for them. The great thing about house numbers is that they’re incredibly cheap from somewhere like Home Depot, and you can even find them at the Dollar Tree. You can also paint the numbers by hand, if you happen to have the skill set. (via Homelight)