REALTOR VIEW Get the greatest value out of home remodeling
Whether you’ve lived in your home for two years or 20, there is bound to be something about it you would like to change. Maybe you want to update your master bathroom or perhaps you’ve been sketching a garage addition.
Whatever your remodeling dreams may be, certain projects offer real-life payoffs when you decide to sell your home. Even if you may not think you will be selling any time soon, it doesn’t hurt to keep your home’s resale value in mind for the future. Here are a few things to consider when planning your home improvements.
Remodeling magazine publishes an annual Cost vs. Value Report that compares the cost for popular remodeling projects to the amount the projects recoup when the homes are sold. According to their latest report, all remodeling projects in the Texas region offer less than a 100 percent return, although some projects come closer to paying for themselves than others.
According to the survey, the project that retained the most value in the Texas region was replacing entry doors (83.6 percent). While that may not fit your idea of an exciting remodel, they are projects that hold their value at resale. Replacing existing siding with fiber-cement siding also scored high (79.6 percent), as did replacing the garage door (74.5 percent).
Don’t go for flashy
The value of home improvements can vary from city to city and even neighborhood to neighborhood. One constant, however, is that odd or unusual projects may not increase your home’s appeal to the average prospective buyer. If you plan to stay in the same house for years to come, go ahead and turn your living room into a replica of NRG Stadium. Be aware, however, that if you do choose to sell, it may stand out to potential buyers for the wrong reasons.
Generally, low- and mid-range projects hold their value better than upscale remodels. For example, an upscale, major kitchen remodel with an estimated cost of more than $100,000 returned only 63.3 percent according to the Cost vs. Value Report, while an $18,000 minor kitchen remodel returned 74.9 percent.
There is no single right answer
It’s important to remember that every home in every market is different. It’s true that the data says you won’t get much return on your investment from adding a sunroom (49.7 percent), but what if you really want a sunroom? Or what if most homes in your subdivision have sunrooms, and you think you’ll be at a disadvantage competing against them when you sell?
The report from Remodeling magazine is a good place to start, but for specific advice about how a room addition or other improvement may affect the resale value of your home, ask a Realtor. And if you’re already planning a move, a Realtor can even help you choose projects that might help your home sell faster.
To learn more about selling and owning a home, I invite you to visit HAR.com.
Shannon Cobb Evans, with Heritage Texas Properties, is 2019 chair of the Houston Association of Realtors/HAR.com.