Do you know which coins add the most value?
- The right home improvements can increase the value of your home without breaking your budget.
- Spending more on home improvement projects doesn’t necessarily mean a higher return.
- Projects such as kitchen counters, landscaping and painting offer the highest returns.
The median home price in the United States recently hit a record high of $344,141, up 20.9% from a year earlier. Despite rising interest rates, home prices are expected to rise further this year due to low inventory levels and strong buyer demand. Even with high prices, you can still make some changes to increase the value of your home.
By knowing what home buyers are looking for, you can focus on making the right improvements to your home. Here are five home improvements that won’t break your budget but can deliver the best return on investment (ROI).
1. Kitchen renovation
According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), more than half of home buyers (57%) prefer granite or natural stone countertops and about a fifth (21%) are looking for quartz or engineered stone. . Only 8% prefer laminate. The other most sought after features in the kitchen are a double kitchen sink (81%), a walk-in pantry (81%) and ENERGY-STAR qualified appliances (81%). When it comes to cabinet color, homebuyers prefer white (32%) or medium brown (26%). Black cabinets are down with 5%.
The kitchen is one of the best places to increase the value of your home. You don’t have to do a full kitchen renovation, often small improvements have the best payoff. A minor renovation such as painting, replacing counters or upgrading appliances offers the highest return on investment at 87%.
2. Lighting and landscape
First impressions count. Simple, inexpensive landscaping features such as new plants, mulch, and garden bed edge maintenance can sway both buyers and appraisers. Investing in curb appeal offers some of the best returns. Basic yard maintenance costs about $340 but yields a 539% return on investment, and adding three cubic yards of bark mulch at $275 can yield a 536% return on investment. Outdoor lighting is one of the most desired features in a home, with 87% rating it as essential or desirable. Other popular exterior features include a patio (82%) and a porch (81%).
3. Home office
In a survey by HomeLight, 60% of top real estate agents said a home office was the top priority for buyers. With more people working from home due to the pandemic, creating space or converting an existing space into a home office can pay off. It can add over $10,000 in resale value, with the number likely to grow as more people settle into their work from home routines.
4. Open Floor Plan
The NAHB study found that buyers prefer open layouts. In fact, 85% want an open layout between the dining room and the kitchen, 79% between the family room and the kitchen and 70% between the family room and the dining room. The open layout gives more space for entertaining friends and family as well as adding more functional square footage and shared light.
5. New coat of paint
A fresh coat of paint on the exterior or interior can make old surfaces look like new. Even pressure washing the exterior to remove dirt and grime can make a significant difference. The return on investment for an exterior paint job could be 129%.
Spending more does not necessarily mean a higher return. The key is to spend your money in the right places. As home prices continue to rise, prioritizing the right home improvement projects can increase the value of your home even more.
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