Home Improvements that Yield the Best ROI for a Homeowner

Home Stager with Sensational Home Staging

Home Improvements that Yield the Best ROI for a Homeowner

by Jennie Norris, ASP Master, IAHSP - Owner, Sensational Home Staging - Denver Region's Premier Home Staging Resource


toolsCAUTION!  As a professional Home Stager I am often asked about improvements that can/should be made prior to listing a house for sale.  Really it boils down to the house, market and the Seller's budget.  My experience is that when a Seller understands the ROI - they will find a way to make the necessary improvements - and the key is not to overimprove and to invest whatever budget they have wisely.  My philosophy is a seller needs to do whatever they can UP FRONT prior to listing the house for sale rather than start at a lower list price and/or lose money to price reductions.  It's much easier to come from a marketing standpoint of being able to say, "New carpet" versus giving a carpet allowance and trusting that a potential buyer will be able to look past your stained and worn out blue carpet.

But home improvements don't have to be done only when you are selling - why not invest in your property while you live there - and you enjoy the changes?

What if you are not selling?  Upgrading your home is exciting and can also provide a nice return on your investment when you sell. To maximize returns, it is important to know which improvements to focus on and to not over invest in your upgrades.

Check out the list of improvements and percentage of your investment that may be recouped at resale - provided by Remodeling Magazine: Remodeling Magazine’s Remodeling 2011-12 Cost vs. Value Report (http://www.costvsvalue.com).

88-92% Garage Door Replacement
A simple, updated garage door can take years off the look of an older home.

76-81% New Windows
New windows not only give your home a “fresh face,” but they can also improve energy efficiency and buyers appreciate those changes.

75-80% Deck
Outdoor living space is a desirable asset no matter where the locale. No maintenance decking material leaves lots more leisure time too.

67-91% Remodeled Kitchen
A kitchen remodel can reward a seller with a sizable payback. Remember that splurging on fancy finishing materials or sophisticated equipment may cut into profits. Keep it simple.

68% Family Room Addition
The key to maximizing your return is to avoid over-improving and keeping the improvement in line with other homes in the neighborhood.

65-75% Remodeled Bath
A master bath is on many buyer lists, so invest here. If you own only one bath, install two sinks or a double vanity to handle the morning crowd.

61% Bathroom Addition
It takes a simple 5 x 9 foot extra bath to make mornings more civilized for most families. Don’t count on a return on extras like a heat lamp or whirlpool tub.

57-64% Expanded Master Suite
To keep costs down, try to find extra space to create this wish-list item by combining existing rooms and spaces. Heavy structural work entailed by adding square feet diminishes returns.

50% Home Office Remodel
A home office adds to comfort, convenience, and salability, but isn’t among the top projects for adding home value.

If you live in the greater Denver area and are in need of professional Home Staging services for sale or for living, just call Jennie Norris, Sensational Home Staging.  With over 10 years of experience and 2,700+ houses Staged - she has yet to meet a house she could not help!  888-93-STAGE or 303-717-7918.  Go to http://www.SensationalHome.com to learn more about Sensational Home Staging.


Posted by

Jennie Norris, ASP Master, IAHSP-Premier, SRS, REO, Owner & Principal Stager, Sensational Home Staging serving the Greater Denver region

  • International Staging Expert, Blogger, and Media Personality
  • Member of International Assoc of Home Staging Professionals since 2003
  • Why Trust Your House or Listing to Anyone Else?
  • Over 2,700 Houses Staged and Thousands of Satisfied Realtor and Seller Clients
  • 303-717-7918Ā  or 888-93-STAGE

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Erv Fleishman
Realty Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Luxury Prop Specialist Realty Associates

I agree fully with the attitude that one should improve to enjoy their home as the first goal. 

The return is a negative, however, even though you will not recoup your costs it may make the property easier to sell. 

Aug 03, 2012 08:24 AM #1
Mark Loewenberg
KW of the Palm Beaches - Palm Beach Gardens, FL
KW 561-214-0370

excellent numbers to pass along to the sellers! liked the garage door leading the pack! but surprised that the master suite was so far down the list...

Aug 03, 2012 09:02 AM #2
Patrick White
Home Driven Realty, Inc - Baldwin, NY
Driven to bring New Yorkers home

Good Evening Jennie

Thanks for the post and home imptovement information. Have a great weekend

Aug 03, 2012 09:14 AM #3
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