Adding Value With Home Improvements
While improving your home for your own enjoyment is always an admirable goal, there are also other reasons for investing the time and money into renovations of your property. The most obvious reason is to increase the value of your home for a future sale. Though you may not be planning to put it on the market in the near future, anything that you do over the years to improve and update your home can pay off in a big way. However, you want to choose wisely and make investments that actually do add value. Read on for some ideas that you may not have considered yet.
When determining how much of your resources and energy to put into a particularly home improvement project, remember to keep it in line with the local community in which you live. This does not mean that you must conform in every detail of style or architectural preference, but your improvements should blend well with the overall environment in which the home belongs. If your neighborhood is full of classic craftsman bungalows, you do not want to add industrial steel siding or contemporary features that make it stick out like a sore thumb. Likewise, you do not want to spend extraordinary amounts of money for major renovations, if the values in the immediate neighborhood will keep your home from being valued high enough to warrant the expensive home improvements.
Though you always want your home to reflect your own lifestyle and preferences, be careful about making your renovations too personal. If you want to keep resale value in mind, go with wall colors that are more neutral, saving bright, splashy colors for accessories like pillows and curtains. Avoid particularly feminine or masculine touches such as pink tiles or dark woods. Potential buyers do not want to make major renovations right off the bat and could pass on your home simply because there are too many personal touches that do not reflect their own preferences.
When choosing which renovations are the most important ones to do first, consider things that not only add long-term value, but will benefit you in the months or years that you plan to still live there. Think about money-saving renovations such as energy-efficient windows, insulating walls and attics, or updating appliances. You can save a considerable amount of money by choosing appliances and windows that qualify for rebates from utility companies, or tax credits from the government.
Value is only going to be added to your home if the renovations you do are done well. This may sometimes mean foregoing the "do it yourself" jobs, and hiring a contractor who specializes in the particular home improvement project that you plan to undertake. Be sure that you get three estimates, discuss every detail of the job, and get all agreements in writing. Ask to see licenses, bonding papers and referrals from previous satisfied clients.
Try some of these ideas to implement a home improvement strategy that will serve you well in the long term. Gaining financially from real estate is not as easy as it used to be, but you can greatly improve your chances of profiting from your investment by choosing your projects wisely.