Contrary to popular belief, dumping $40,000 into a massive renovation project isn’t the best way to increase your home’s market value. While that brand new deck or overhauled kitchen might seem like a great idea on paper, it will cost you a fortune in both time and money and isn’t guaranteed to net you any more money when it comes time to close on the house. Instead, most real estate pros agree that you’re better off investing in several smaller upgrades to the area buyers find most objectionable. For example, here are four quick and easy DIY projects that will make your home much more appealing than that major renovation you’ve been planning.
1) Install New Kitchen Cabinets and Counters: The kitchen is one of the most-used areas in any home, which makes it a great candidate for renovations. But instead of spending a fortune on big-ticket items like an island and a high-end fridge, you should really be focusing on upgrading the little things like your cabinetry and countertops.
Studies have shown that modest upgrades to these areas tend to provide sellers with the most value on the market. For instance, a $1,000 investment in new cabinets and counters could land you as much as $5,000 when you sell your house. You’ll need a partner to help you with the installation, but if you take the time to do the project properly you’ll save a bundle on contractor fees – netting you even more money when it comes time to close.
2) Invent More Livable Space: One thing every buyer is concerned about is how much living space is in a home. While you can’t simply tack on an extra bedroom, you can invent some of this livable space on the cheap simply by redecorating one the lesser-used areas of your house. Add some living room chairs and a long table to your attic and voila, it’s a craft room. Install some drywall and carpet to a section of your basement and suddenly you’ve got yourself a den. Smaller investments like these will make your home much more appealing to buyers.
3) Give Your House a Face Lift: You want to make a good first impression on potential buyers, and the best way to do that is to increase your home’s curb appeal. Install some new siding, paint your front door and repair any cracks in your walkway and driveway. If you can impress a buyer before they step inside, then you’ve got a much better chance of receiving a generous offer.
4) Light It Up: Well-lit homes really tend to strike a chord with buyers. Before you host an open house, you should increase the wattage of the light bulbs in your home and remove any drapes that obfuscate incoming sunlight. You might also benefit from purchasing some new lamps, or at least swapping out the shades on the ones you currently own. Just remember to keep it tasteful – nobody wants to buy a ranch house with a massive chandelier.
Smaller upgrades to your home might not net you a fortune, but they’ll cost you much less and help you sell your home much faster than a single massive renovation. So if you’re going to put your home on the market this season, take some time to try out these easy DIY projects. You’ll be surprised at just how useful little things like new cabinets and a smooth walkway can be in landing you a great offer on your house.
Author Bio: Lucy Clark is a self-professed home improvement junkie and a featured writer for DIYMother.org. She once built a coffee table out of nothing but reclaimed driftwood and good old fashioned gumption. She currently lives in North Dakota with her husband and two daughters.