Everyone loves a good DIY project (well, maybe not everyone), but sometimes doing it yourself can take a toll on the value of your home. Before you start your next DIY project, you should ask yourself one question. Is what you are doing going to increase or decrease that value of your home?
You might think that anything you do to improve your home is an investment in its future sales value, but that isn’t necessarily true. Some activities, like serious electrical work, are better left to licensed professionals. Fortunately, there are many projects that you can do yourself that will add value to your house. Here is a list of ten DIY projects that will boost your home’s value.
1. Create Space
If you can safely take down a wall to create more open space, then go for it. A good example of such a project is removing a wall to put in a breakfast bar. Structural work should be performed by a professional, but simple demolition and repair is something you can do yourself to add several thousand dollars to the value of your home.
2. Clean Up Your Yard
A study of more than 2,000 real estate agents, conducted by HomeGain, found that investing in your yard is a smart move. By spending just $500 on improvements to landscaping, sidewalks, and other outdoor features, you can get a return of as much as $2000.
3. Remove Clutter
If you are going to sell your house, then you have to remove things that make it look smaller or that prevent people from seeing it as their own. This means cleaning up personal items, getting rid of clutter stacked on counters, and polishing things like mirrors. Believe it or not, removing clutter can boost sale price by as much as $2,000.
Updating and repairing plumbing can increase the value of your home by more than $3,000. Focus on things like leaks, old pipes, and areas you know to be problems. Replacing outdated faucets and other plumbing fixtures is also smart.
5. Natural Light
People want natural light. Unfortunately, homeowners are often put off by the cost and difficulty of installing windows and skylights. Sun tubes, however, are easy to install. Take an afternoon to install a sun tube and watch your home’s value soar.
6. Light Fixtures
Lights switches and fixtures are a critical component in the look and feel of your home. Lighting projects, some as simple as installing a dimmer, can boost value by several hundred dollars each. Focus on bathroom and kitchen lighting.
Almost every real estate professional you ask will tell you that flooring is critical to home value. If you have outdated or worn floors, invest a few hundred dollars in something like a hardwood laminate. You could see a increase in your home’s value of as much as $2,000 for every floor you upgrade.
Everyone wants an energy efficient home. If your house is short on insulation, install it yourself. The attic is the easiest place to add insulation, but adventurous individuals may want to invest in blown-in insulation (you can rent the equipment) for the walls.
Fresh, neutral paint is a good way to boost the appeal of you home. Peeling paint is almost always a deal-breaker for a buyer, so repair it immediately. Focus on entryways, bathrooms, and kitchens to get the most bang for your buck.
10. Detail Work
Simple details like crown molding, chair rails, and wainscoting can really improve the character of your home. Look for simple projects that add interest to your home, but avoid things that are too quirky.
When it comes to adding value to your home, some projects are better left to professionals, but you can do most things yourself. The rule of thumb is that any structural project or activity that requires inspection should be left to a professional. You can do everything else yourself, which will keep costs down and boost the return on your investment.