15 HOME RENOVATIONS THAT ADD VALUE TO YOUR HOME
We have all watched those shows on HGTV that flip houses and remodel them. Some are practical and some are just made for Hollywood. Let’s review 15 renovations that can realistically add great value to your home.
Kitchens and bathrooms are the two biggest things that sell a house, so it’s no surprise that these two are at the top of the list. There are a couple of different ways that you can go about a kitchen remodel. A full gut or a partial renovation.
To state the obvious, a full gut would mean that you demo the entire kitchen and start from scratch. New counter tops, cabinets, appliances, hardware etc.. A full gut is the most expensive route, but can bring life to the entire house. Depending on the size of the kitchen and which materials you choose, you are looking on average, anywhere from 20k – 25k to do a full remodel in the kitchen. If you are choosing luxury appliances like Thermador or Viking, you can double that cost to 40k – 50k.
If you don’t have the ability or need for a full kitchen remodel, consider a partial remodel to upgrade your kitchen. Keep the cabinetry if it’s in good condition and change out the doors and hardware. If you have laminate countertops, toss it and install granite or quartz. Also, painting the cabinets a white or grey color will make the cabinets look almost new! A partial kitchen remodel is the most bang for your buck and can add tremendous appeal if done correctly.
Like I mentioned above, kitchens and bathrooms are what sells a house. After the kitchen has been updated, the next place to put your money is in the master bathroom. If your bathroom hasn’t been updated since the 1990’s, it’s time to give it a facelift!
If you are building custom cabinetry in the kitchen, consider having your carpenter build out the vanities for the bathroom as well. And if you are installing new countertops, keep it consistent with the kitchen or match the color scheme or look you are going for in the bathroom. Tile work (flooring and shower) and frameless shower glass are relatively inexpensive and go a long way for a fresh new look!
You don’t have to go crazy here and spend a ton of money. Simple tile work in the shower and flooring will suffice. Consider painting the vanities to keep the flow of the house consistent or replacing lighting and plumbing fixtures or cabinet hardware to give it an updated look.
Besides the kitchen, painting is probably the most important and can be the least expensive update you can do. It’s easy and you can do it yourself on a weekend if you want to! Fresh paint alone can make a house feel completely different. If you have flat builder grade paint, now is the time to spruce it up to make for a custom feel. Check out Pinterest for some really cool ideas and consider an accent wall to add a designer touch to your home.
Take a walk around the house to see what your windows look like. Are they old single-paned windows from the 70’s? Do you have double-paned windows and a few of them look foggy? If you have single-paned windows, you should update them to double-paned whenever you can. Double-paned windows add energy efficiency to your home and can cut energy costs by up to 31%! If you have double-paned windows and one or more are foggy, that means the seal has broken and you need to replace the window ASAP.
I remember the first house that my wife and I bought had builder grade carpet and paint. It felt like an oversized apartment. But let me tell you! When we decided to paint and remove the carpet to install tile, the entire house felt completely different. It felt like home. If you have carpet throughout the house, get rid of it. Maybe only keep carpet in the bedrooms if it looks nice. The rest of the house should be wood, tile, or vinyl flooring. Yes, I said vinyl. Believe it or not, there are some really great selections for vinyl flooring now-a-days that are extremely durable and cost effective.
If your roof is pushing 20+ years of age and has been patched several times, it may be time to get a new one installed. This can be quite expensive, so see if your insurance company can help cover the costs. If you plan on selling your house soon, the damaged roof will come back on the inspection report and you may have to replace it anyway. Plus, if a major storm hits the area, it could lead to more issues down the line.
This isn’t a must do, but it helps with appeal for sure! If your house is sectioned off, it could feel small or claustrophobic to potential buyers later down the road, hindering your ability to sell for top dollar. Now, I am not saying start knocking every wall down in the house, but rather, see if it’s structurally possible to open up some areas for a better flow. For example, can you open up the kitchen to the living area and have a nice sized kitchen island? Every homes layout is different, so make sure you speak with your contractor or structural engineer to find out what you can and can’t do.
This one may not add ‘value’ so to speak, but if done correctly it adds quite the appeal from a buyer’s prospective. And let’s face it, a buyer’s opinion is what really matters when you decide to sell your house one day. If you have a game room or media room in the house, think about adding some nice built in cabinetry. If you have a 2 story house with an oversized landing, you could add in a little built in study area as well. Do you have a separate study in your house? You can add built in shelving and cabinets for storage and books. There are lots of opportunities to add built-ins in a home to give it more of a custom feel, you just have to look for them. Don’t over-do it though or force a built-in if you don’t have the space.
This isn’t a must if the unit is in good working condition. At the very least, you should have your units serviced twice a year for maintenance. However, there will come a time when replacing parts starts to cost you more than just replacing the unit and be done with it. And it could be costing you quite a bit in energy costs as well. If the unit can no longer keep up with your demands, it will constantly stay turned on, racking up your electricity costs and energy consumption. Get a tech out to service the units and provide you a report and go from there.
Here is a nice little upgrade you can do yourself! Change out the light fixtures and hardware throughout the home. If you have the old 90’s gold door knobs and chrome faucets, it’s time those get laid to rest. Head on over to Home Depot, or shop on Amazon for some great deals. What’s popular right now are oil rubbed bronze or matte black for hardware. For light fixtures, choose what fits the feel of the home and the look you are going for.
First impressions matter! When you first pull up to your house what do you see? A well-manicured yard or a yard that’s been neglected with overgrown bushes and weeds that overtake the flower beds? Ask around for landscaping recommendations or find someone already in your neighborhood. Fresh mulch, flowers, trees trimmed, and a freshly cut yard make for fantastic curb appeal.
Here is something easy you can do on your own! We just talked about curb appeal, and when it comes to driveways, sidewalks, and the exterior of the home, it matters just as much as those flower beds. If the driveway and sidewalks are black, it’s time to freshen them up for a newer look. And the same goes for the exterior of the home. If you have algae build up on your brick, siding, or stone it needs to be removed before the growth continues and it becomes an eye sore. If you don’t have a pressure washer and you don’t want to fork out a few hundred bucks to buy one, head over to Home Depot or your nearest hardware store to rent one for a few hours.
This could go along with the kitchen remodel if you do one. But if you have old outdated appliances, try for an upgrade to newer models and stick with stainless steel colors. Your stove, microwave, refrigerator, dishwasher and oven should all be the same color, again, preferably in stainless steel. So head on over to your nearest appliance dealer and start pricing it out.
15. SIDING & EXTERIOR PAINT
Updating the siding of the house can make a huge difference as well. If you have old aluminum siding or deteriorated wood, it’s time for a replacement! Siding can get pretty expensive, so plan accordingly if you need to replace it. Let’s say it’s in good shape for now and all you need is to re-paint the outside to make it look new again! Choose neutral and inviting colors to use for exterior paint. If you are in a HOA, be sure to get approval for your color before you purchase it. Some even have a list of pre-approved colors that you have to select from. If you aren’t sure what the paint color will look like or if you will like the colors you chose, check out what other people have done on Pinterest. I swear, you don’t even have to think or be creative anymore when it comes to designing something in a house, just look at Pinterest for ideas!
Not all renovations are created equal, so pick and choose wisely. Determine what your overall objective is. Are you planning on selling the house soon? Or do you plan on staying there for a long time? Determine which projects have priority over others and go from there.
If you need any recommendations on who to use for your remodeling projects in the Houston area, reach out to us and we will be happy to share our contacts with you.
Also, should you need any help on deciding what you should and should not spend money on, give our team a call and we will be happy to guide you!