People spend tens of thousands of dollars on home renovations in hopes of increasing the value of their home. The fact is, most of these upgrades end up resulting in a net loss – meaning they cost you more to do than they increase your home’s value. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t put money into your house, it just means that you need to first analyze your goals and then decide how to spend your hard earned money.
As a general rule, you should only do major upgrades to your home if the purpose of the renovation is to improve your enjoyment of the property. Spending large sums of hard earned cash in hopes of netting a higher sales price is, more often than not, not worth the time or the money. Most projects will net you 60% of less of the money you put in.
With that being said, here are 5 inexpensive things you can do to your home that will help you sell your home for more money.
1. Soap and water – Give the house a good deep cleaning, inside and out. Clean all of the little areas that you don’t normally even think about (i.e. that this layer of dust on the top of your baseboards). Clean out that layer of grime that builds up in your window tracks. Make all of the glass in the home clean and transparent. The windows should be very clean inside and out. Dollar for dollar, this is, hands down, the best thing you can do for the value of your home.
2. Replace your doors – A new front door can really improve your home’s curb appeal and doesn’t cost all that much. Also, new interior doors can make an old, outdated home look decades newer.
3. New trim and window casing – If your home does not already have window casing, this is a very easy and inexpensive update that makes your home look much more expensive. If you have an eye for detail, you can very easily do this yourself. Please, if you are not comfortable doing this type of project, then don’t do it yourself. Poorly installed baseboards and casings will make your home look much worse that if you didn’t do anything at all.
4. Yard work – Trim the bushes, cut the grass, weed the flower beds, and generally make the yard look neat, and tidy. You don’t have to install a $30,000 water feature to make your yard stand out, you just need to get it looking well manicured. You can do this yourself or you can pay a couple hundred bucks to have a crew come and clean the place up. Homes with clean yards sell for much more money than their untidy counterparts.
5. Paint – This one is obvious, apparently, because this is the one that everyone seems to do. I don’t like to beg, but please, do not try to do this yourself unless you are able to do it well. I’m not exaggerating when I say that 60% of paint jobs I see are done poorly. Don’t try saving time or money by not taping. Use far more tape than you think you need and use all of it. You should spend significantly more time in taping than you do in actually painting.
There you have it. Most of these are free – all of them are simple – and they will increase your home’s value by thousands of dollars.