4 Simple Home Improvement Principles That Strengthen Your Decision Making

Kelsey W. Popham

If you’ve been eyeing the home improvement television shows and then looking around your home, you might be wondering how to pick what to do first. Most of us don’t have unlimited time or budget for projects, so we have to narrow down our options. It can be hard to make a choice that both improves the quality of life, sustains the strength of the home, and helps you sell your home someday. 

Here are four principles to consider that can help you decide “this or that?” for a whole list of potential home improvements. Considering your priorities carefully will help you fully embrace the results of any project you pick.

Smaller or Lower-End Projects Pay For Themselves Faster Than Luxury Upgrades

The more you pour money into luxury materials, big additions, and extra space, the less ROI you can expect to get. That isn’t always – once in a while, adding a seventh bedroom or fifth bathroom to a home makes it the perfect fit for a future buyer. However, aligning your home with most “better than average” homes around your area is where the biggest returns are since they boost your home in a potential buyer’s estimation. For instance, a home with only one bathroom may be a true liability in a major housing market, so adding a second bathroom may bring both the ROI of any bathroom project and the added competition of making it a viable home choice for a wider range of buyers.

When The Bones Are Good, Simple Cosmetic Change Brings Big Results

If you have a great set of kitchen cabinets, don’t always assume that you need new ones just to make your kitchen look less dated; paint and new hardware may be enough to make that change. Obviously, if you slap paint over a part of your home that is in deep need of repair, a home inspector will likely find that out, but if the home has strong foundations and essentials, you may be able to do a more cosmetic update and save some cash.

Home Improvement Isn’t Just Remodels; Functional Fixes Matter

Keep in mind that some years, it isn’t just about the new and the ritzy, but rather about updates to electrical, plumbing, or your roof. These projects feel less fun for some of us, but by getting them done, you’re making the home sturdier and removing some of the risk of unexpected major repairs.

Make Changes For You and Make ROI Just Icing on the CakeAdding features like a swimming pool or luxury kitchen and expecting your home to instantly go up in value by the cost of the project is a way to create disappointment. In reality, many people won’t automatically pay $20,000 more for your home with a pool just because it costs $20,000 to install. Instead, buy updates and upgrades, especially luxury ones, with your family in mind, knowing that the biggest value they bring is in life well lived. Then, if your home gets a little value boost, whether that is $2000 or $25,000 when it comes time to sell your home, you can see it as all gravy.

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