Updating a home is a great way to make changes to functionality and aesthetics. However, many major improvements will not add value, and thus will not increase the potential sale price. If your goal is to treat improvements as an investment, these are the three things you may want to focus on.

Bathroom Remodel

The older and more outdated the bathroom, the better update will enhance your home’s value. Bathrooms are a major selling point for a home, and a clean, updated look can go a long way. While you may consider fancy upgrades such as heated floors or hot towel racks, the most cost-effective investments are in simple appearance changes. Focus on tiling or paint schemes, vanity, fixtures, and color schemes. Keep in mind how your completed look will play with your colors. According to Community Glass & Mirror, frosted glass shower doors give you additional privacy but tend to make a room appear darker. Use lighter tiling or paint to contrast. Small updates can yield up to a 100 percent return on investment, while major updates can still come in at greater than 60 percent. Just be cautious with luxury upgrades and have a researched plan in place.

Kitchen Remodel

Like the bathroom, kitchens are a selling point. As such, smart upgrades in this area can go a long way. Smaller projects can have a return investment greater than 80 percent in many cases. It can pay to be smart about your improvements. For instance, you can consider resurfacing or painting older cabinets rather than completely replacing them. Combined with new hardware, they can look modern and new for a fraction of the cost. Replacing one or two older appliances with new energy-efficient models is a good idea, as is focusing on the aesthetics of the flooring, counters, and backsplash. The key is to avoid massive renovation, which can rapidly escalate in price for diminishing returns.

Landscape Improvements

Your landscape can also be an opportunity area. Avoid expensive and high-maintenance features such as koi ponds as many people are not interested in the hassle of upkeep. Instead, keep clean and organized flower beds and shrubbery in the front yard for strong curb appeal. In the back, make sure the yard is clean and space is maximized. According to Concrete Network, a concrete patio can be a cost-effective addition. Trees can be planted for eventual shade and cover or used to define property lines and give privacy. Having an open yet private area with plenty of greenery is a great selling point for any home.

Homeowners should always be cautious about a renovation. Poor planning or eccentric choices can cause costs to spiral or decrease value. Sticking to proven areas and smart choices give owners better satisfaction with their home and better resale value.

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