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6 Ways to Add Value to Your Home

Updated white kitchen
Kitchen improvements improve home values in a flash. (Courtesy image USSFCU)

by Carrie Lazar, Sr. Communications Manager (USSFCU)

The value of your home can increase or decrease due to any number of factors, including variables out of your control like conditions in your local housing market. Still, you can try to up your home’s value with strategic upgrades. Here are some ideas:

1. Start with a thorough cleaning

A dirty home can be a major deterrent to anyone interested in buying your place. That’s why it’s important to clean your home, both inside and out.

Begin by thoroughly cleaning all floors, countertops, and surfaces. Pay particular attention to carpets and hardwood floors, which can make a significant impact on appearances. For carpets, consider renting a carpet cleaner from a local home improvement store like The Home Depot or Lowe’s—a worthwhile investment. Alternatively, employing a professional carpet cleaning service offers convenience without a hefty price tag.

Don’t overlook the exterior of your home. Use a power washer to clean the vinyl siding, entryway, sidewalks, patios, and other outdoor surfaces. A pristine exterior not only enhances curb appeal but also solidifies a positive first impression for potential buyers.

2. Apply fresh paint

A fresh coat of paint can make even dated exteriors and interiors look fresh and new. When considering paint colors, remember that many homebuyers gravitate toward neutral tones that match a variety of home decors.

3. Give unused areas purpose

Sometimes, potential homebuyers are curious about how their prospective home uses its space. This means that it’s important to give purpose to any unused areas of your home.

For example, transforming a simple utility closet into an efficient storage area or refinishing your basement can add value to your home. Other simple projects — like adding storage systems to your laundry room or adding bookshelves to your home office — are affordable tasks you can undertake.

4. Update kitchen

Many buyers zero in on the kitchen as the central feature of a home, so if yours is outdated, it can ultimately affect how much you garner from a sale. Likewise, if you aren’t able to utilize your kitchen fully due to layout, space, or other concerns, you won’t be maximizing the space.

Midrange or modest kitchen upgrades tend to offer a better ROI than the most elaborate ones. According to the National Association of Realtors, the average complete kitchen renovation costs around $80,000, and a homeowner would likely get around $60,000 of value when it’s time to sell.

If updating your entire kitchen is too big of an undertaking, a minor remodel could still impact your home’s value — think of coordinating appliances and installing modern hardware on your cabinets. Talk with a real estate agent about what makes the most sense and what will command the most dollars from prospective buyers.

5. Improve curb appeal

Curb appeal makeovers are great whether you plan to stay in the home for years or put it on the market. Some popular ways to make your home look beautiful when approached from the street include:

· Landscaping for four-season beauty

· Replacing front door

· Resurfacing driveway

· Replacing the garage door

· Adding or replacing a front walk

· Building a small front porch or covered entryway

6. Make energy-efficient upgrades

Some curb appeal improvements overlap with making the home more energy efficient too. If you’re not happy with your home’s entrance, consider replacing the door with one that offers better protection from the outdoors or installing a storm door with screens.

Other updates that offer a good ROI include:

· Installing thermal windows

· Replacing an old roof

· Adding a better furnace or water heater

· Insulating the attic or other chilly spaces

· Placing solar panels on the roof

Even small upgrades like installing a programmable thermostat or ceiling fans can bring you energy savings year after year. 

Reasons to Increase Your Home Value

Increasing the value of your home, a major asset, not only boosts your overall net worth but also brings several additional advantages. Cosmetic upgrades such as updating bathroom tiles or converting unused space into functional rooms enhance both the aesthetics and utility of your home, thereby raising its market value. A higher home value can result in greater profit when you sell and allows you to tap into more home equity if needed for funds. Additionally, if the value of your home increases sufficiently, it could eliminate the need for mortgage insurance premiums, furthering financial benefits.

Financing Large Home Improvements

By strategically choosing and financing larger renovations, you can significantly increase the value of your home while ensuring the changes meet market demands and personal needs.

Learn more

You can find this article and many more on our website at

Data source: Key Trends in the 2023 Cost vs. Value Report. Article content is provided for informational purposes only.

This article is sponsored by United States Senate Federal Credit Union

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