3 WAYS TO ADD VALUE TO YOUR HOME
I am constantly coming across homeowners complaining about an appraiser not giving value to some upgrades they have recently made. They are telling me about their state of the art sound system they installed, their all brick custom wood burning fireplace, or even their gold towel rack (Yes, this happened, it was $5,000!).
There are many other specific upgrades I come across, way too many to mention! Prior to making upgrades in the area you need to do some research to see what is accepted in the market and what is typical.
For instance, a lot of homeowners may think installing that huge in-ground pool may increase value, but in reality it may not. What if the typical buyers in the area are elderly couples who do not wish to have a pool in their back yard, rather a large yard to have a garden.
Another example I have come across was a client that installed an all-brick custom driveway that included large pillars imported from Europe. The cost to build this driveway was over $15,000, however, due to this upgrade being an over improvement for the area, no value was given to it because it wasNOT typical for the market. In this particular area, the typical buyers were 25-35 year old newlywed couples and they did not care about a custom driveway. They just wanted a drive way to pull their cars into.
From my 10+ years of appraisal experience and being a broker selling homes, I can tell you my TOP 3 items to upgrade that are likely to increase values:
1. Kitchen – Everyone has to eat, therefore this is the number one place buyers look. Installing granite countertops, upgrading cabinets, and adding new appliances will give the kitchen a great new look and add value to your home. Your goal is to give that “Wow” factor to other buyers. You can easily do this by searching for deals. You do not have to buy the top of the line appliances and cabinets. Be Creative!
2. Bathroom – Bathrooms are the second place that potential buyers will look, therefore it is very important to have that updated bathroom and not an outdated one. By simply upgrading flooring and painting the walls, you can easily give your bathroom an entire makeover.
3. Adding Square footage – As long as the size of your home is not the largest in the area, more times than not, adding square footage to your home will help your value. Square footage is one of the largest factors in valuing homes. However, before you add that extra square footage consult with a professional to determine if it will add value.