In talking about recouping home improvement costs there is one room that should be held above all others: Kitchen. The kitchen is the single best place to remodel in order to raise the value of your home. Want proof? A study done by remodel magazine states that for small kitchen renovations, the return is close to 92.9 percent of what you put in. Another remodeling must is bathrooms. Bathroom remodels on average return 90.1 percent of their cost.
Projects that take place in these two areas of the home can be some of the most difficult and harder to handle for DIYers. That being said, let's focus in on 5 doable projects that will give you that return that you are looking for come closing time ..
1. Tile the Floors:
When it comes to kitchens and baths, tile is one of the most durable materials to use for the floors. There are many styles of tile to choose from ranging from $ 10.00 / sf stone to $ 1.50 / sf ceramic. The trend laTely is to stick with natural looking materials in neutral tones. This is a classic look however that will never go out of style.
Most people should have no problem tiling themselves. It is as easy as removing the old flooring, screwing down a plywood sub-floor, spreading mastic, laying the tiles, and then grouting after they set up. You also want to be sure to seal them when in kitchens and baths. There are many do it yourself workshops and tutorials available for this.
2. Paint the Cabinets:
Are your cabinets old or ugly? If you are staying in your house for more than 5 years look at replacing them. However, if your stay will be shorter than that the best way to add value is to paint the cabinets. Re-facing is expensive and does not always yield good results. Again, stick with a neutral color such as off-whites or grays.
3. Replace the Appliances:
Nothing can turn a new buyer off like old, dingy appliances. Many buyers will slash thousands of off their offer just to replace the appliances. Check out the various scratch and dent resources in your area. Sears always has a near scratch and dent facility with many appliances at 50% -70% off. The new buyers do not need to know how much you paid for the appliances, just that they are new.
4. Install a glass door on the shower:
In the past years, bathrooms have become 30% larger than they used to be. Previously, they were used strictly as utilitarian spaces. They have now become lavish lounges in which homeowners will often relax. If you have an older house you may not have the space that the new buyers are looking for. One solution is to put in a frameless glass door as opposed to a shower curtain. Shower curtains stop the eye while glass doors allow the eye to pass through, making the bathroom appear larger than it is.
Sometimes the easiest and most effective way to make your house look more inviting is to put a fresh coat of paint up. Color is a very personal preference and paint fades quickly. Think about repainting the entire house with fresh, new, neutral colors. This will make for a more move-in-ready feel.
The key to improving your homes value is by anticipating what new buyers will want and giving it to them. Take the work out of it. Any time new buyers expect having to work on something, they will drop the price of their offer. You want to provide them with a warm, clean, neutral, move-in-ready environment.