Home Improvements with the Top Return on Investment

top home renos
Jane Pinzhoffer

Jane Pinzhoffer

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Whether you’re upgrading your home with the intention of selling or doing it simply for your own enjoyment, here are the top upgrades for an excellent return on investment in your property.

When it comes to ROI on home improvements, it’s important to realize there’s a limit to the value of your home. Make sure you’re not over-improving.

Kitchen Renovation

Kitchens are a prime example of places where going overboard is easy. Hardwood cabinetry, top-of-the-line appliances, quartz countertops, and adding an island or pantry can easily run into six figures. Even a mid-level, complete kitchen renovation is in the $75,00 range. There are ways to have a great-looking kitchen without pulling out all the stops. It comes down to making smart decisions.

That being said, kitchens are one of the top ROIs. Painting your cabinets is almost always a guaranteed ROI and one of the best ways to refresh your kitchen if you’re sticking to a budget. Since the cabinetry is such a prominent part of any design, painting and updating the handles and drawer pulls can transform the room. White is always an excellent choice. It not only looks fresh and clean and matches any décor, but it can also make the space appear larger. Details such as finishing trim and wainscoting are decorative touches that can make the room pop.

PRO TIP: When painting your cabinets, hire a professional or do your due diligence. If you find roller and brush marks in your finished product, your efforts will have the opposite affect you were hoping for, lowering the value and appeal of your home. Most professional cabinet painters will remove the doors and drawer faces, and take them back to a shop to spray them for a smooth finish. This also requires several coats with sanding in between –it’s a lot of work, but worth it!

Extending your living space indoors and outdoors

Since the start of the pandemic, when people were stuck in their homes, more living space became and remains a top priority. Making your home bigger and more functional could encompass everything from finishing the basement to adding an extra bedroom, home office, or sunroom if you can build out or up.

Adding outdoor living space is another popular option. Outdoor living is generally defined as extending your lifestyle to your yard. Think hot tubs, gazebos, and outdoor kitchens set amid an inviting natural environment.

PRO TIP: If the work you’re doing requires a permit, you’ll want to read or watch this popular article and real estate podcast episode.

Bathroom Renovation Tips

The shower and tub are the focal points of any bathroom. Ensuites, in particular, are a good room for a refresh. Installing a glass walk-in shower to replace a tub/shower combo makes your bathroom appear bigger and more inviting. However, make sure you have at least one bathtub in your home. It’s an important feature for many people, especially those with young children.

Other good options include heating floors, upgrading tiles, modernizing the toilet, and replacing the vanity. Depending on the fixtures and materials, you’re probably looking at a minimum of $20,000, but if done right, this can result in an excellent ROI. Don’t forget painting and light fixtures. These two upgrades are key if you don’t want to sink a lot of money into major renovations.

PRO TIP: Similarly to painting kitchen cabinets, painting your bathroom vanity, replacing the hardware and counter top and plumbing fixture is a more budget-friendly, high ROI option.

The most critical point if you’re doing renovations solely for a good ROI is that any changes should be done according to what’s expected of your type of property. Getting the most bang for your buck depends on the house. Make sure you have a good understanding of what similar types of homes have.

FINAL PRO TIP: Consult with a designer and Realtor! All too often, we visit homes where the owner spent thousands of dollars renovating their home but made horrible colours and finishes in the process. Ensure your money is well spent by getting a second opinion. The Real Estate Agent will be able to provide insight into what may be considered an over-improvement based on their knowledge of similar homes to yours in the neighbourhood.

Lastly, the opposite of an over-improvement would be when a home that is expected to have high-end finishes is renovated with sub-par materials. If you live in a home where high-end appliances are expected, don’t cheap out on them, or you may find buyers considering other houses with nicer features.

Here are some top kitchen upgrades to consider

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