Home renovations aren’t always about stainless this and marble that, and extravagant additions your wallet can’t cater for. When it comes to boosting your home’s value and smart property investments, finding the projects that offer the biggest rewards is vital. And not all home improvements are created equal.
Some projects will protect your hard-earned dollar more than others, especially if you’re planning on selling and moving on in a few years. To reflect what homeowners want, the best remodelling projects should be low maintenance, good – but not necessarily the highest – quality, not overly costly and complicated. So where do you start? As far as long term value-adding renovations go here’s the top five investments you can make in your home.
1. Up the security.
Making security a priority is one of the best investments you can implement as a homeowner. With burglary rates on the rise in almost every state, it doesn’t matter whether you’re in a high crime area or not; everyone should feel safe in their own home. For the peak end of security investments, consider installing a home security system. These are designed to automatically control outdoor lighting around your home and help to monitor the property with alarms in place to notify local authorities of any security breach.
Upgrading the lighting around your home will help to deter crime through the use of sensor or timed lights. Secure entry points – the front and back door – with quality security screens. It’s wise to install security screens on accessible windows too. Especially for older homes, new high-quality locks can be installed to prevent access or old locks being easy to pick, pull or pry open. Consider moving your home’s first line of defence from the front door to the street for higher-end budget by installing a security or privacy fence and gate.
2. Tackle the projects that pay.
Focus on big ticket areas when remodelling your home, like the kitchen and bathroom. People buying a house look at these areas first and when selling they'll generally pay for themselves pretty quickly. A basic kitchen remodel can boost your return of investment by 85 per cent and as the hub of the home, it’s the smartest room to tackle first. Don’t just think about the shiny stainless steel appeal either, the layout and workspace is where you want to concentrate on first. Creating an effortless flow within the space for when you’re cooking and preparing is essential for homebuyers.
The bathroom is another high ticket area that pays off. The master bathroom suite should be remodelled at 10 per cent of the house’s value, and you can get away with spending five per cent on the secondary bathroom. You don’t need to go overboard; new fixtures, a re-grout of the shower and a little texture and colour can make a massive improvement. Both the kitchen and bathroom are the rooms where potential buyers can tell whether money has been well spent or not. They're also the rooms where people spend a lot of time, so think about not only the visual appeal but the practicality of the space.
3. Upgrade outdoor deck and patio space.
Another project that pays dividends is the outdoor living space. As more homeowners crave that integral migration between indoor and outdoor living, utilising the outdoor area as an additional room can be a massive investment for your home. Whether you revamp the existing deck or add one in, Aussie backyards thrive on a space that can be used all year around. Thus, it pays to opt for a patio design which can complement your home’s existing architecture and keep you and your guests comfortable.
For a smaller makeover, upgrade the front yard to boost kerb appeal. This can be as simple as paving a nice walkway from the street to your front door, or adding dimension and colour through new planter boxes or pots. Kerb appeal is important when it comes to home improvement and investments as a book is always judged by its cover. A power wash of the home’s exterior and a fresh coat of paint on the gutters will go a long way too.
4. Entry door replacement.
Another great way to boost kerb appeal is to replace your front door. Working day in and day out, front doors are quick to show wear and tear. A simple revamp of a new, modern, high quality entry door can offer the best bang for your buck by transforming the entire look and feel of your home. It also makes for a better welcoming for guests and potential buyers.
Outdated front doors don’t just look terrible, but they weaken your home’s security and through draughts can be a huge source of energy loss. Entry door replacement is a relatively low-cost and quick project that won’t just improve the aesthetics of your home, but boost energy efficiency, security and cut down on heating and cooling costs. Check out these stats by Lifehacker about what door replacements offer the highest return of investments.
5. Brighten up your space.
It’s amazing how far a fresh coat of paint can go and good interior lighting can go. No potential buyer or homeowner likes to live in a dark and dingy living space so use natural lighting and a vibrant colour flow to brighten the place up. Where possible, substitute artificial light for natural and use table and floor lamps throughout the space to create a balanced illumination. Simple touches like dimmer switches to lights can make a dramatic change to any room too.
The space can be brightened up through paint and décor too. Stick to neutral colours if you’re redoing the paint-scheme and planning on selling soon and accent with colourful accessories. Light neutrals like warm whites and greys will turn a dull looking space into one that’s open an airy; but keep ceilings bright white to open up and heighten the room. In most cases, ceilings should be painted a lighter colour than walls to enhance the feeling of spaciousness.
Now that your bricks and mortar have been successfully updated, here are four garden upgrades to add value to your property.
This article is written by Jayde Ferguson, who writes for Central Screens – a Western Australia family owned business since 1993 specialising in security doors, screens, grilles and locks for your home.
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