Brand X Pictures

Brand X Pictures


When someone decides to remodel a property or do a home renovation, it can be for a variety of reasons. Personal appeal or increased sale value are two main motives for people when they renovate or upgrade their home.  It’s important to understand the difference and why certain remodels are more ideal for different situations.

Part of the American Dream is to own a house, and the freedom to remodel is surely included. However, it’s important to upgrade for the right situation and get the most for your money. Real estate is an industry where big time money is involved, and any decision related to the manipulation of property can have lasting financial implications. Check out these common types of remodeling jobs and learn why you should consider them when selling a house or increasing comfort for long-term residency.

Renovations to increase sale value.

1.     Paint.

The coating on a property is a classic remodel option for those who are selling their house. The reason is that although it’s never safe to judge a book by its cover, people combing the listings for real estate generally do. People understand that someone spending money on the order of $100,000s will without a doubt want a property that appears nice. Whether it is interior or exterior, alteration by paint is one of the most common ways to improve appearance of a structure.

While people who plan on staying in their residence desire a new paint job as well, it isn’t one of the features of a house that makes or breaks how happy a current resident is. Usually the people already in the home will be content and give the paint job an extra couple years of shelf life.

2.     Décor.

Whether people are rearranging their floral arsenal or switching out light bulbs to set the ambience, upgrading the décor of a house is a very common way for people to increase sale value. For one, it isn’t usually a major renovation like installing a new roof. Remodeling through décor alterations is a much more detail oriented project that involves small nuances, rather than a large scale process.

While people who are staying long term surely focus on décor, this type of renovation falls under the category of increasing sale value because it is often viewed as a quick upgrade with the goal of impressing and making a good first impression happen. If a couple wanders through an open house that has all new light bulbs, flowers and wall paper they will be more likely to feel comfortable.

3.     Kitchen alterations.

Sometimes it’s replacing the faucet in the main kitchen sink or refinishing the cabinetry, but the results are the same. Any kitchen upgrade can really pay off when it comes to selling a house, and homeowners know this. Small changes, like switching the handles on the drawers or polishing the marble countertop, can be crucial when someone comes to check out a property.

Just as potential homebuyers love a nice kitchen, so do people who plan to live in their house forever. While minor kitchen upgrades are commonplace in life, they are often specifically used to increase sale value.

Renovations to increase comfort long term.

1.     Roof.

A roof protects tenants from all sorts of weather that can happen, and it represents one of the main features of a house that isn’t very glamorous. A new roof looks like a roof. However, they are crucial to the longevity of real estate and most homeowners understand that or will understand that eventually. Roof quality is so vital that people renovate them or completely replace them.

While it can surely increase sale value to advertise that a home has a new roof, most people follow through with this upgrade when they are looking out for themselves. Sometimes a roof replacement can cost over $10,000 for a large house, and this is a lot of money to get back on closing date when everything is said and done.

2.     Landscape.

People renovate yards all the time, as it represents a way to increase the exterior of a property and add character to a lot. However, it is not very common to plant a large amount of trees and shrubbery specifically to increase sale value. Usually long term tenants will have a vision of what they want their yard to look like in 10 or 20 years, and make changes to meet that vision.

Landscape is a property upgrade that is not only extremely expensive, but one that takes a long time to come to fruition. Large scale landscape alternations do not represent a quick way to make money on a sale. When a sale is concerned, often the make or break factor boils down to the acreage, not what trees have just been planted on the land.

3.     Lighting fixtures.

The way that light falls within a property is surely important. While some people switch out light bulbs and other small features to increase sale value, installing a new chandelier isn’t a common way to impress people coming through on an open house.

Upgrading bathroom and artwork lights are examples of lighting fixture renovations that are done when someone plans to live in the house for years to come. If someone puts in art lighting, it is done to focus attention in a certain way on a certain piece of art. These types of changes are almost exclusive to people planning to stay in a residence.

Improving a property is a popular focus of people around America, but motives vary depending on the situation. Trying to get some extra capital on a sale is one reason and increasing comfort for the long haul is another. It’s just important to understand the difference, nothing more.

Tim Richmond writes about the mortgage industry, real estate, green building, personal finance and home ownership. He currently writes for the Native American mortgage specialists 1st Tribal Lending.