Is it Worth
If you are like many homeowners, you probably have a long
list of things you would like to do to improve your home.
Maybe it is a big project such as remodelling the kitchen,
landscaping or even installing a pool. Perhaps it's a
simpler venture such as painting or laying new carpets.
In any case, one thing we all wonder is if renovating will
be worth the outlay in time, money and added stress. In a
nutshell, will there be a reasonable return on the
investment, economically and in terms of enjoyment of the
Your first order of business should be to figure out
exactly why you want to renovate. Is it to make your home
better looking, more functional, or to increase it's value
when you sell?
If you have pressing needs such as a new furnace or better
insulation, these should be attended to before all else.
There is no point in adding snug new carpets if your house
is cold and drafty in the winter. If you love your
neighbourhood or location but just want a larger house,
you might want to undertake some major renovations to add
square footage. Be aware, though, that those kinds of
renovations are very costly.
As for adding value to your property, many people make the
mistake of thinking a big ticket item will automatically
lead to an increase in value. While pools, decks and
patios can be a source of enjoyment for you and your
family, you may run the risk of not fully recouping your
outlay when you sell. Often, you may be better off
considering a more functional project.
There are no guarantees when it comes to realizing a
profit on your renovation investment. If your goal is
simply to increase the value of your home, the only method
that works is to find out what is most desirable to the
buying public. You can maximize your chances of making the
right decision by consulting a real estate professional;
REALTORS can tell you which renovations are popular and
could lead to increased value.
Cosmetic renovations are extremely popular and usually the
most affordable. Many homeowners are foregoing more
expensive projects in favour of things such as interior
painting, updated decor and new floors and carpets.
Exterior painting and siding, as well as new windows and
doors, are also high on the list.
Because potential buyers are drawn to attractive homes,
money spent beautifying your property can also serve to
increase its value.
Functional improvements such as kitchen and bathroom
renovations are among the most likely to add value.
Finished basements are a good choice, especially for
families with children. Energy efficient features are also
much sought after these days, and most buyers will enquire
about your monthly heating and air conditioning costs.
The primary reasons homeowners cite when deciding to
renovate are to make their homes more attractive, to add
value and as part of regular maintenance. But surveys have
shown that cosmetic and functional renovations have the
best chance of increasing value. It appears that a new
kitchen or hardwood floor offers more appeal to the
average home buyer than a pool. This, of course, assumes
your home is already well-maintained.
Landscaping falls into a separate category. Because you
can opt for either modest improvements or a total
transformation, your decision is more complicated. Modest
landscaping, such as a new garden or walkway, will
certainly make your home more sellable, but more extensive
work can be very expensive and not all buyers will have
the same taste as you do.
Pools and decks are anybody's guess. To the right buyer,
they are extremely persuasive items. But some buyers will
consider a pool a liability, limiting the potential market
for your home.
Recent statistics have shown a growing trend toward
renovation of all types among homeowners. More and more
people are choosing to upgrade existing properties and
this is expected to continue in the near future.
So, if you have elected to join the crowd, pick your
project wisely and, if you are hoping to add value to your
home, it always pays to consult a real estate professional
REALTOR® is a registered trademark of the Canadian Real
Estate Association and identifies a real estate
practitioner who is a member of the Association.