Need help with home improvement?
It's a simple fact, consistently confirmed across Canada over a very long period of time, that even the most appropriate major improvements are unlikely to return their full cost if a house is sold within two or four years.
Does that mean that major home improvements and renovations are always a bad choice? Not at all. Although it does mean, , that if your existing house falls seriously short of meeting your family's needs you need to think twice, and think carefully,
before you decide to undertake a major home renovation. Viewed strictly in investment terms, major improvements rarely make as much sense as selling your present home and buying one that's carefully selected to provide you with what you need.
Even if you have a special and strong attachment to the home you're own and feel certain that you could be happy in it for a long time if only it had more bedrooms and bathrooms, for example, there are a few basic rules that you should keep in mind before undergoing any "home renovation" project.
Probably the most basic rule of all, in this regard, is the one that says you should never, unless you absolutely don't care at all about eventual resale value, improve a house to the point where its desired sales price would be more than 20 percent higher than the most expensive of the other houses in the immediate neighbor hood.
Try to raise the value of your house too high by performing major home improvements and surrounding properties will pull its value down.
Indeed, some "improvements or renovations" can actually reduce your home's value, and your chances of selling at a good price, say experts. So what are the sure fire winners, which should pay for themselves and boost salability when you come to move?
Key points you should consider before hiring a "general contractor". :
Central heating can be expensive upgrade in your home but future potential purchasers may be put off if you don't have it, so you should recoup your money with this HVAC improvement. Best on the list of new heating systems is two stage furnaces with variable speed furnaces.
Secondary glazing on the inside of existing windows may be preferable to double glazing for a period home with original features. Although you are likely to get back only a third of your money on double glazing, savings will be made on household heating and electrical bills.
Make sure any home improvements are appropriate to the character of your property. Try to avoid replacing old features, such as stained glass, and original skirt boards with new and up to date ones.
An extra bathroom will keep its value, as long as it is not built at the expense of a bedroom. If the property is fairly large and has upward of four bedrooms with one bathroom, converting a bedroom into a bathroom may have certain appeal and homeowners may possibly break even on their investment.
A new kitchen is a popular home improvement but homeowners are unlikely to get back more than their original investment.
Stripping wooden floors or refinishing may look attractive, but ensure the floor boards are of good quality. This improvement and renovation won't add greatly to the value of the home.
Knocking through walls may provide additional space but will also provide fewer rooms, any reduction in rooms could devalue the realaste property.
A swimming pool may be the height of luxury, but potential buyers may be concerned about security risks for small children and expensive running costs. A pool may recoup as little as 10 percent of the initial cost and so should not be considered to be a good house improvement.
Never rearrange the interior of your house in a way that reduces the total number of bedrooms to less than three.
Never add a third bathroom to a two bath house unless you do not care about ever recouping your investment.
Garages are sought after features and will almost certainly recoup your investment.
Consider if your improvement renovation requires planning permission or building regulation approval.
If you are thinking of taking out a loan to fund your home improvements, read these loan advice article first.
And finally make sure you have re-visited your home and contents insurance and amend level of cover as appropriate
After reading all this you may decide that it's a better idea to move rather than improve. In that case it is still worth looking at what home improvements and renovations you can do to the house as it is often the smaller, relatively inexpensive improvements that turn out to be most worth doing.
Window boxes and hanging baskets add colour and make a home look cared for. Viewed from inside, a window box can help to disguise an unattractive outlook as well as increase privacy for overlooked homes.
Cover out datedor worn sofas and chairs with large throws in a neutral colour so that they are not noticeable when people look around.
The cost of replacing a discolored toilet bow, making sure all the windows work or getting rid of dead trees and shrubs in trivial compared with large home improvement or renovation projects such as adding a bathroom, but such things can have a big and very positive impact on prospective buyers. Creating at least a superficially improved looking home will greatly increase the chances of selling your home, as well as upping the potential asking price of your renovation.
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