Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home

Dated: 09/06/2019

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Your home in Port St. Lucie is one of your biggest assets, and when you’ve decided to sell it, it makes sense to do as much as you can to boost its value. 

Home improvement is the best way to add value to your home. However, not all home remodeling projects are created equal — especially when you're trying to get the biggest bang for your buck when it comes time to sell your property. Some projects can actually make it more challenging to sell the house. 

So before you spend thousands of dollars on that home remodeling project you've been dreaming about, make sure that you're armed with the facts first.

To ensure you are investing money into the right updates, you need to consult with your trusted local real estate agent to find out the best updates and renovations for your property. You have to make sure that you are adding equity to your home and increasing its appeal.

Before you start knocking down walls or painting the walls of your Port St. Lucie home, here are three things you need to remember.

  • Tackle home maintenance FIRST

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - Home Maintenance

Before you consider any cosmetic change, you must first take care of any home maintenance issues. If you've been living in that house for years, there will be things to fix and clean. Ignoring issues like the leaking roof, drywall cracks, or sticking windows or doors may cause problems later on, and may even be the cause for the buyer's withdrawal.

  • Focus on affordable and minor renovations

Focus on projects with small to mid-range price points because major home renovations RARELY PAY OFF. Choose affordable, minor and easy renovation projects since they pay off better than costly, upscale ones. 

  • Renovate based on what buyers want

Remember that you are renovating the home for resale, so make it appealing to the buyers. Your likes and preferences may not be what the buyers want. 

For example, instead of opting for the fiery red paint in the living room, go for something more classic and neutral. Choose updates that will make the home appealing to more buyers. Give the buyers what they want, not what you want. 

Top home renovations that add value to your Port St. Lucie property

Today, we're going to tell you which of the most common home renovation projects are worth the investment, and which ones you're better off doing without. The answers may surprise you. 

Roofs and New Siding: Not Very Glamorous but Quite Impactful

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - Roof

Remodeling Magazine reports that you're more likely to recoup your investment on such features as your roof or your siding than you are on bathroom or kitchen remodels.

In fact, siding replacement recouped 92.8 percent of its investment while roof replacements recouped 90 percent or more at resale.

Roof replacement appears to be most important to buyers in the east, with home owners recouping an average 96.3 percent of the cost. In the Midwest, that average return was around 71.1 percent.

That's because home buyers care more about the overall structure of the home than they do about an aesthetically pleasing kitchen.

What's more, a recently replaced roof or new siding tells buyers that their maintenance costs are going to be low to non-existent for the first few years. And it's impossible to understate how important that is to buyers.

Kitchens: A Sound Investment or Not?

The consensus is unanimous: Kitchen remodels are an excellent way to spend your home renovation dollars — but only if you don't spend too much out the gate.

In fact, minor kitchen remodels (in the ballpark of $15,000 or less) returned 92.9 percent of the investment. That number dropped off on bigger remodeling projects in the kitchen.

Some features to focus on in the kitchen include all wood cabinets, commercial-looking appliances, stone floors, and stone countertops.

How About Bathrooms?

Bathrooms are also a fantastic place to invest your home remodeling dollars. Often, homeowners are pleasantly surprised to discover that they get a 100 percent-plus return on their investment.

For instance, a $9,400 bathroom remodel in Baltimore recently recouped 182 percent of its cost at resale.

Some features that you may want to focus on during a bathroom remodel include floor-to-ceiling steam showers and walk-in showers. And if you only have one bathroom in your home, spend your money on adding a second bathroom instead of remodeling the only bathroom you have.

Look Down! It’s a Wood Floor

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - Wood Floor

The floor receives most of the wear and tear on the house. If you're planning to renovate for resale, why not update the floor? 

This is especially true if you have an old, grungy carpet. It is time to let it go. Of course, carpets don't really work in the kitchen, so better go for wood tiles. 

Buyers these days prefer hardwood floors. Hardwood floors are durable, easy to clean and look elegant. According to the 2017 Remodeling Impact Survey, the wood floor has a  perfect joy score (meaning a lot of buyers want it), and it has a 100% ROI.

New Vinyl Windows

Windows protect you from the elements. If your windows are at the point of giving up and you want all the advantages of new windows but don't want to spend a lot, go for vinyl windows. Vinyl windows are great for the budget, energy-efficient, long-lasting, and gives your home exterior a beautiful finish. 

Window replacement for the whole house costs around $17,000 for the high end. But you can be sure your house is better insulated, which means you don't have to use a lot of energy at home, and decreasing your utility bills. 

Should You Get a New Front Door?

If you’ve never thought of replacing your front door, perhaps it is time to do so. 

According to Remodeling Cost vs Value, one home project that will pay for itself is a new steel entry door. For the past three to four years, front steel door replacement has one of the highest ROI’s at 91%. If you’ll spend $1,471, you’ll recoup about $1,344. 

How about a Garage Door Replacement 

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - New Garage Door

Once your home has been updated and you have a new door and siding, it would seem awkward if your garage door has not been changed.

Your garage door makes a great investment. In fact, garage door replacement is in the top three renovations whose costs are recouped through increased home value. If you spend $3611 on a new garage door, you’ll likely recoup 97.5% of it and get back $3,520.

Don't Forget To Consider Your Home's Curb Appeal!

People often focus their remodeling dollars on the inside of the home but the exterior is just as important — if not more so.

After all, a potential home buyer will form an opinion about your home before they ever step foot inside.

Perhaps that's why adding siding is such a sound investment when you look at the return you could get at resale.

Another way to make sure your home has adequate curb appeal is by adding a front porch or other architectural features to make your home more inviting.

Here are a few other ways to increase your home’s curb appeal:

  • Clean up the clutter. Get rid of any unused items and dead plants from the yard. Scrub down grime through a powerwash. These should give your home's exterior a clean look. Don't forget to clean out the gutter. 
  • Spruce up the landscaping. Taking care of your front yard shows pride of ownership. Fix and trim all yard features. Add shrubs, plants, and flowers. That splash of color can go a long way to improve a buyer's first impression of the house. 

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - Curb Appeal

  • Upgrade porch and stoop railings. If you have a porch, give it a makeover by installing new stoop and railings. The porch extends your home’s square footage, and investing in new railings will add more appeal to your home. 
  • Install new porch lighting.  Improving your porch lighting really adds to the visual charm and more importantly brightens up the front area which is a good protection. 
  • Increase your home's square footage. Once you've fixed the porch, you can increase your home's square footage by creating the porch into an outdoor living space. Adding a couple of rocking chairs, a hanging swing, or a comfortable bench which can transform your porch from a regular porch into a great place to hang out with friends and socialize. Adding colorful pillows will give it some personality. 
  • Improve the fence. Frame your beautiful yard with a painted fence. It adds visual appeal, and a fence in good condition is usually included in an appraisal. 

Give Buyers Extra Room to Grow

Finally, consider adding another room to your home during a remodeling project.

We've already talked about the benefits of adding a bathroom. But the same principles hold true for other room additions as well.

In fact, for every 1,000 square feet added to a home, your sales price will increase by more than 30 percent, according to a 2005 National Association of Realtors study.

One caveat to this rule: Don't add so much extra space that your home becomes the most expensive home in the neighborhood. That's a sure way to turn off home buyers.

Upgrades that won’t increase your home value

Like I’ve mentioned earlier, not all improvements are equal, and not all improvements add value to the home. Check out this list of upgrades that are harmful to resale. 

Elaborate landscapes

Homebuyers love homes with a beautiful front yard, that's for sure. But you don't have to create a maze or other garden features simply because landscaping designs are subject to the buyers' preference, and homebuyers may not like what you've added in the yard. 

Wall to wall carpeting

You may love carpets, but not all homebuyers share that preference. There is an increasing number of homebuyers who are concerned about the safety of using carpets for health reasons and prefer tiles or wood. You also have to consider that yes, the buyer may like carpets, but what if they don't like the color you chose? 

Expensive upgrades

A new HVAC unit won’t really add value if the old one is still functional. Buyers expect the HVAC to be fully functional so they won’t really pay for those features. 

Solar Panels

Solar Panels in the house sound amazing, but if you are installing it for the purpose of increasing the property’s equity for resale, you won’t get your money back. You should have installed them earlier so you can recoup your cost on the utility bill. 

Just a Few More General Notes About Home Remodels

Regardless of what type of project you select, remember that the following factors will also help determine your return on investment:

Home Improvements That Pay Off When Selling Your Port St. Lucie Home - Updated Kitchen

  • The Value of Your Home
  • The Value of the Homes in Your Neighborhood
  • The Housing Market You're Located In
  • How Soon You Sell Your Home After the Home Improvement Project
  • The Quality of the Home Improvement Project

Your #1 Resource for Real Estate Trends and News

Hopefully you learned something today about home remodeling projects and how much they really benefit you as a prospective home seller in Port St. Lucie. 

Make sure to follow our blog to receive the latest updates on real estate trends like these and how they may impact you.

Call me, Melissa Conrad, at 772-240-2589 and let’s talk about the best upgrades for your home for sale. 

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