As a homeowner, you know that allocating dollars to the continued upkeep of your property is necessary to maintain its value over the long-term. On the other hand, the enhancements, upgrades or renovations you may want to make are not created equal when it comes to adding value or guaranteeing a high return on investment.

Some projects will cost just a few hundred dollars while others may require thousands. Regardless of the actual expense, if you want to recoup some of the cost, the key is to put money toward projects that will truly make the investment worthwhile. Here are five renovations that can add value to your home and offer a sizable return.

Kitchen Remodel

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The kitchen is the heart of the home and its appearance and functionality can either be a selling point or a quick deal-breaker for prospective buyers. When it comes to upgrading this space, the level of investment you make should be carefully considered and researched. If you plan to live in the house for an extended time and the current kitchen décor should have been retired 20 years ago, a complete overhaul may be the best option. However, if you plan to sell in the near future, moderate updates could be a wiser decision. Cost-effective renovations can run from replacing hardware and fixtures to painting walls or cabinets. A bit larger budget could cover the installation of new counter tops, new flooring, or new energy-efficient appliances. Of these projects, choose upgrades that improve functionality and feature the latest trends.

Bathroom Remodel or Addition

Like the kitchen, the bathroom is another room that can either make or break the appeal of a house. If you're renovating, it is most cost-effective to focus on renovations that make the space modern and versatile.  A good place to start is the vanity area—often the focal point of the bathroom. This may mean replacing the entire vanity or going with a new top, hardware, or sink. Upgrading the lighting fixtures, painting the walls, or re-tiling the floor are also great ways to improve the space without spending top-dollar for a major overhaul.

Depending on the layout of your property, a bathroom addition could increase the value of your home. This may be a worthwhile investment especially if there is only one bathroom in the house. This could be done a few different ways - one option is to add a bathroom to the master bedroom. Another option might be to transform a small portion of your main living quarters into a half-bath.

Entryway Enhancement

You only get one opportunity to make a first impression. Giving the front door and entryway a makeover can set the stage. Consider painting your front door a welcoming color or installing a new one to elevate the curb appeal of your home. Don’t forget the front walkway – make repairs if necessary or put one in. Give the front landscaping some attention too – a new border wall, planters or new shrubs. These enhancements are easy, low budget projects that offer a great return on value for the DIY homeowner.

Outdoor Deck or Patio Upgrade

Functional outdoor living spaces continue to be a popular home improvement project and for good reason: they can provide a good return on the investment. As with all upgrades, costs will vary depending on the materials used and the size of the space. You can expect the addition of outdoor living space to improve the value of your home, but it’s important to make wise construction decisions and take good care of it during the course of ownership so it keeps its value.

Vinyl Window Replacements

Although vinyl windows aren’t the most glamorous upgrade to make and are an expensive investment, the value they add is multifaceted. On top of improving curb appeal, installing replacement windows can provide a higher level of comfort while improving the energy efficiency of your home. Plus they are a notable feature to prospective buyers.

Owning a house is one of the largest investments you may ever make and it’s a significant responsibility. Regular maintenance will be required to protect and maintain the value of your property. Sometimes you might want to make enhancements that simply bring more enjoyment to you. But if you want to add value or get a return on the expense of making renovations, remember to do your research and invest wisely on projects that improve the functionality and appearance of your home.

If you found this blog helpful, check out 5 Reasons to Tap into Your Home’s Equity to see if your home can provide the cash you need for renovations or to improve your overall financial position. 

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