Protect the Real Estate Market Value of Your Home
For many persons, buying a home is something they have dreamed about for years before it becomes a reality. Part of the classic American dream, the house purchase will represent one of the biggest investments ever made. For most homeowners, protecting and increasing the real estate market value of that investment is of prime importance.
As time passes, careers change, and the family unit changes in size, many homeowners begin making plans to sell their house and buy another. Either to relocate, upgrade, or downscale from what they currently own.
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Even if a person isn't planning on selling their home, regular maintenance, repairs, and remodeling efforts are important; to protect their investment, enhance house usability, and keep it attractive and comfortable as possible.
The following 101 suggestions can help your home market value appreciate, rewarding you with a comfy, cozy refuge with a high rate of return on investment.
Real estate agents call it curb appeal. The first impression prospective buyers have of your home; what they see from the outside. And as everyone knows, first impressions are everything!
Consider the following, for maximum curb appeal:
- Roof shingles — If your roof leaks, repair it. If shingles are old and unsightly, replace them. Whatever type roofing you select, make sure style choice and color compliments the house and landscape design.
- Clean the roof of debris — use a stiff janitor's broom to remove leaves, sticks, and other debris. Afterwards, use a garden hose to spray-clean the eves and downspouts. Never use a pressure wash to clean the roof unless you have wood shingles or clay, slate, or concrete; and then, only with caution.
- Siding — the biggest curb appeal impact factor is the house exterior. If siding is old, faded, chipped or damaged replace or repair it. New siding not only gives a home a major facelift, but return on investment is generally high. In fact, it is one of the top home renovation projects that show the greatest return at resale.
- Replace or repair windows — not only important for home curb appeal, but insulated window choices make your home more energy efficient. An important selling point and one of your best investment return options. Window style and appearance is important, and can drastically enhance house exterior and increase your home's real estate market value.
- Paint house exterior - one of the most dramatic and cost-effective ways to improve overall house appearance is to paint the exterior. Another home renovation project with high investment return that will increase the current market value of your home; up to 200% plus resale recovery. If you can't afford to paint the whole house then paint the trim, downspouts, and gutters. Get color combination ideas from home decorating magazines, or new house construction and exterior remodeling in and around your neighborhood.
- Clean windows — as simple as it sounds, keeping windows clean and sparkling is something many homeowners overlook when preparing to sell their home. Dirty windows make a house look unkempt and bleak — inside and out. Reducing the chances of a positive reaction from prospective buyers.
- Accessorize the front of your home — even simple items found at a garage or rummage sale can turn drab to charming and add character to your home. For instance, a cast-iron dinner bell or whimsical weathervane.
- Get a new front door, or give the existing one a facelift — important, because it is the first aspect of your home people see up close. An attractive door is more inviting. If the door is old or in poor shape, get a new one. If it is in relatively good shape, paint it to either match trim work or in a complimentary color. For instance, if your home is light grey with white trim, consider painting your front door burgundy or black; a classy, eye-appealing color combination. Other great colors for doors besides standard white or wood grains are red and dark green.
- Dress the main entry door up with a brass kick-plate and brass door knocker — a brass kick-plate looks great and helps protect the paint at the bottom of the door; a brass door knocker adds a touch of class. While you're at it, you might also want to consider an ornate brass mail slot — much more attractive than ordinary mail slots and mailboxes.
- Build a patio deck — another high ROI, with an average recoup of 104.2% for a moderate 16 X 20 foot deck using pressure treated pine, concrete footings, and composite deck material. Add a built in bench, planter, and railings to the patio deck design for optimum appeal.
- Get rid of old, faded, or broken patio furniture — repair if possible, or replace.
- Add a patio fireplace to your deck or patio — an attention grabber sure to impress potential buyers.
Un-clutter the area surrounding the house — use garden hose holders to coil water hoses neatly off the yard; trash cans painted bright colors can be used for storage of toys and sports equipment, etc., in the garage or on the back patio.
- Pressure wash the exterior of the home — to get rid of dust, debris, and cobwebs. You'd be surprised how much brighter and newer the siding will look. Use a low pressure nozzle to avoid washing paint off wood. If you've vinyl siding, use a brush or sponge, instead.
- Pave a gravel driveway — and greatly enhance curb appeal as well as increase real estate value. An asphalt driveway has advantages over a concrete driveway; it is more flexible and less apt to heave or crack. It also costs less. A cobblestone or brick driveway costs more — but is more eye-appealing and may represent your best real estate value increase option!
- Driveway resurfacing and repair — if your driveway is already paved but is cracked or otherwise in bad shape, repair it and/or use a driveway sealer.
- Add gravel to a dirt driveway — and enhance curb appeal; select blue-grey gravel, red, or white — for a more formal look.
- Change the contour of your driveway — an easy option that can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home if your driveway is gravel or dirt. Consider adding an inviting curve, or an elegant circular driveway.
- Remove weeds from between concrete slabs and walkways — a sure sign of property neglect and a big turn off for potential buyers. Tip: a 20% bleach solution works well.
- Build a new garage — every homeowner knows the advantages afforded by a garage, and every prospective buyer will see a garage as a big plus. A new home garage is a great property enhancer that increases the market value of the home.
- Finish off an old garage — if you already have a garage, consider finishing it off inside. Add storage space, or a work shop — complete with workbench, power outlets, and shelving. Such an addition could help your home reach its full market value potential and better compete with other homes for sale in the area.
- Install an automatic garage door opener — another great way to automatically increase real estate property value is to install a garage door opener. Select a model with a multi-code garage door opener remote that routinely changes the code for additional security — a most desirable feature.
- Install a skylight dome or roof skylight — the addition of a skylight window makes a pretty curb appeal picture. Improving cosmetic appearance of the structure inside and out, while increasing home real estate value. Skylight installation also increases natural lighting in rooms; making them more inviting and cheerful.
- Install shutter and window box sets that match — using a window shutter design in a contrasting color that compliments that of your house. Shutters and window boxes add charm and character to a home.
- Enhance your porch or doorstep with pots or baskets of blooming annuals — an inviting and fragrant way to boost visual appeal and add eye popping color.
- Give your old BBQ grill a makeover — degrease it first, rinse well; repeat if necessary. Once totally clean and dry, refinish it using a bright fireproof/high-temperature paint. Select a color that matches house trim or shutters. Or try something fun that will really stand out, such as yellow or orange.