What House Upgrades Will Increase its Value?

by Chris Joseph

In a competitive housing market, you need every edge you can get to make your home more appealing to potential buyers while increasing its resale value. Though home improvements may constitute an upfront expense, the result can be a faster sale at a higher price. Some types of upgrades will even allow you to recoup a large portion of your investment upon resale.

Spurce Up the Kitchen

Many house shoppers immediately gravitate to the kitchen, so you'll want to be sure yours is the crown jewel of your home. Giving your kitchen a complete makeover before your home goes on the market, including new wallpaper or a paint job, replacing antiquated appliances and cabinets and installing more attractive flooring, can add significant value. According to the SmartMoney website, you should be able to recoup as much as 70 to 80 percent of your kitchen remodeling costs when you sell your home.


Painting the interior as well as exterior of your home can dramatically improve its appearance and value at a relatively low cost. Avoid painting in overly bright or exotic colors, as most people tend to prefer more neutral, conservative shades. Don't neglect to paint smaller areas such as the trim around windows and doors. Painting can be a time-consuming task, so if your calendar is full, it can be worth your while to hire professionals to do the job for you.

Adding Bathrooms

Few home shoppers are likely to complain that your house has too many bathrooms. A new bathroom filled with gleaming modern fixtures will attract lots of positive attention from potential buyers, and SmartMoney indicates you can recapture 65 percent of the cost of a new full bath. Dirty or dingy bathrooms tend to be a major turnoff for buyers, so remodeling your existing bathrooms also makes your home more attractive while increasing its value.

Increasing Energy Efficiency

As energy costs continue to soar, taking measures to make your home more energy-efficient can increase its value to potential buyers. Common steps include installing more efficient doors, windows and even a new roof. Solar panels can be an attractive feature to environmentally conscious buyers. Keep in mind that while these improvements will increase the value of your home, you will also reap the benefits in the form of lower utility bills while your house is on the market.

Building a Deck

An attractive deck allows home buyers to imagine themselves kicking back on a warm summer evening with a cold drink while enjoying the gentle breezes, making it a valuable selling tool. Another benefit of a deck is that its installation is highly cost-efficient, as SmartMoney notes that you can recoup up to 85 percent of its cost when you sell your home.

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