Home Sweet Home: Increasing the value of a home

By Cathy Osoria

Increasing the value of a home can be easily done with some basic planning and thought.  Here are some simple ideas that can increase the worth quickly.

Pre-planning saves time and money
If upgrades are made intentionally rather than on impulse, better results will occur. Make lists of home improvement ideas and projects. Take the lists and prioritize according to the cost of the project, including time and money. Be realistic. It is fine to list an outdoor pool with an elaborate water feature, but always keep the budget in mind and how long this home will be lived in. Once a plan is made, do some research and talk to a realtor, decorator or contractor to see which projects will yield the best return on the investment.

room2Small home improvements can be a big benefit
If the decision is between improving the home’s decor versus making upgrades that can increase the home’s resale value, doing a bit of both can actually pay off. Make two lists: upgrades for the home and personal upgrades. Home upgrades might be replacing faucets, old doors and/or flooring or newer lighting. Items on the personal list might include artwork, furniture or curtains. Choosing one upgrade per month from the lists will help make improvements slowly without feeling overwhelmed.

Tackle one room at a time
Whether it is a simple coat of paint or knocking down a wall, working on one room at a time will make the projects more achievable. Look at the list of improvements and write down the amount of time each project should take. If one only has a weekend to work on the project, then select something that can be completed in that allotted time. This will help with unfinished projects and the feeling of completion of a beautifully finished room.

Create space
Remove a wall or even the kitchen island.  Anything that opens up the space and creates a sense of flow in the home is what buyers are wanting.  Families want an open floor plan where the kitchen and living room are connected.

b41Clean house helps bring profit  
A clean and uncluttered home should be a priority. This helps one stay on top of maintenance issues by spotting problems before they become more expensive issues.  A potential buyer is going to be much more attracted and confident about how the home was maintained if it is dirt and clutter free.

Refresh curb appeal
Take a photo of the front of the home and see how it will look on the computer in black aaf1nd white. When the color is removed, it is easier to see the glaring flaws (like cracks in concrete or house color blending into landscape). If there is a curvy sidewalk, it could be lined with flowers to accent the sidewalk feature. Overgrown bushes can darken the entry  and  hide the home’s beauty.  Painting the front door a bold color or the addition of new house numbers may help improve the home’s overall appearance.

Upgrade your kitchen and bathroom
Kitchens and bathrooms bring the No. 1 return on investment. Updating  kitchen appliances to stainless steel, refreshing a backsplash, adding an island or new lighting can be profitable and rewarding. Bathroom upgrades can include under mount lavatories, fabulous faucets, marble or granite countertops. The tub may be removed and replaced with an oversized seamless glass walk-in shower.

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