Home Improvements & the Potential Retrun

Many Canadians are opting to invest in home improvements before selling their home. While most plan to spend a reasonable amount, others plan on going the extra mile but how much of their investment will be recovered when their house sells?

Each year the Appraisal Institute of Canada surveys its members and compiles a list of renovations that provide the best return on investment. Refurbished kitchens and bathrooms top the payback list: 75 per cent to 100 per cent of the investment for these upgrades can be recovered upon resale. But you must remember, if you are renovating in order to sell, the updates must appeal to the majority of potential buyers to ensure the highest possible return.

The Appraisal Institute of Canada states on its website: “If the value of your house exceeds the average market value in your neighbourhood, your renovations will not yield much return. But if your house value is below the average, you can recover a larger part of the renovation costs.”
Below are approximate percentages to keep in mind when considering your updates:

Percentage recovered upon resale
Kitchen upgrade: 75% to 100%
Bathroom upgrade: 75% to 100%
Interior painting: 50% to 100%
Roof replacement: 50% to 80%
Replacement of furnace or heating system: 50% to 80%
Expansion (addition of family room): 50% to 75%
Doors and windows: 50% to 75%
Deck: 50% to 75%
Installation of hardwood floor: 50% to 75%
Construction of a garage: 50% to 75%
Fireplace (wood or gas) 50% to 75%
Central air conditioning: 50% to 75%
Finished basement: 50% to 75%
Wood fence: 25% to 50%
Interlocking paving stones on driveway: 25% to 50%
Landscaping: 25% to 50%
Asphalt driveway: 20% to 50%
Pool: 10% to 40%
Skylights: 0% to 25%

When You Should Invest in New Floors

If you’re living in a home with floors that have seen better days, then the following is very important as your flooring, when in good shape, can add tremendous value to your home. It’s no surprise that potential buyers are more likely to be dazzled by brilliant floors that look new as opposed to those that are outdated or scratched. The reason isn’t just aesthetics, but also the fact that floors in rough shape or outdated usually translate to extra work and expense to potential homebuyers.

Increasing Value with Your Existing Floor

Depending on the condition of your current floor, you may not need a complete overhaul. Carpets can be professionally cleaned and floors can be spiffed up with a good cleaning as well. If you have hardwood that is worn or has obvious scratches, then stripping & sanding the floors and having them re-stained is cheaper than installing new floors while giving you the look of practically new floors. In the case of laminate that may have gaps or some water damage; repairs are fairly easy as long as you are able to get your hands on pieces in the same color and style for an exact match. Tile can be made to look new again with a good grout scrub or even by using one of the many grout stain pens on the market.

When You Should Invest in New Floors

Any floors with very obvious damage or stains are going to result in lost sales or low-ball offers and the same goes for obviously outdated flooring. For instance, if you have broken boards or orange shag carpet, then you need new floors. Most buyers, unless looking for a fixer-upper, aren’t going to want to buy a home that requires new flooring. With older homes and townhomes, carpet and tile styles and colours can really date a home, so those should be replaced. Broken floor boards and tiles, as well as water damaged floors will also need replacing if you want to increase the value of your home.

Some Final Tips to Save You Money on Flooring

If you’ve decided to invest in new floors, consider the following to help you save money while increasing your home’s value:

  • Check home improvement store flyers for sales and discounts
  • Ask your contractor if he gets a discount on materials
  • Check out flooring warehouses and clearance centers
  • Check Craiglist and Kijiji listings for people and contractors selling extra stock

3 Easy Projects That Can Add Value to your Townhouse

It’s no secret that there are an abundance of townhouses for sale in Langley and surrounding areas. For anyone who might be planning to sell, something you’re going to want to consider is how to add value to your townhouse so you can make more from your sale and help sell it faster even with competition. To help you get started, we have come up with a list of 3 easy projects that will not only help you add value to your townhouse, but will also help your sale along so that you can get it sold faster when the time comes.

1.  Add or Re-Do Your Backsplash

The kitchen backsplash is an upgrade that many overlook when they purchase a townhome and one that many builders don’t bother with either. A tasteful and well-done backsplash instantly updates your kitchen and it’s a project that’s easy to do yourself or that’s inexpensive enough labour-wise to hire someone to do. Check home improvement store flyers for sales so you get the best price for your materials, many of which you can find especially discounted during long weekend sales.

2. Painting

Take advantage of paint sales at home improvement stores and give your home a fresh new look for next to nothing by painting rooms and hallways. Choose colours that are known to have a general appeal and aim to make large rooms look cozy instead of closed in and small rooms look bright and airy. An experienced Langley real estate agent can offer suggestions on colours that are more likely to appeal to your particular target market, so ask before you buy paint if you’re not sure what to choose.

3. Paint or Replace Baseboards and Moulding

Baseboards and crown moulding offer architectural interest to a room and add value to a home. If your existing moulding and trims are looking tattered, then use wood filler or plaster to repair any chips and deep scratches and paint them out so they look new again. If adding crown moulding and trim to a room, opt for a style that’s somewhat contemporary but still classic as anything too ornate could put off some buyers and date a home. If doing it yourself, remember to buy extra for any miscalculations and always measure, measure, and then measure again before cutting to save yourself time and money.

5 Quick Bathroom Updates that will Help You Sell Your Home for More

It’s no secret that bathrooms can make or break a sale and dictate how much or how little you get for your home. Most people want to walk into a home and see and an updated bathroom that doesn’t look like it requires any extra work or expense. Fortunately, there are easy ways to make your outdated bathroom look just that way.

Use these 5 quick bathroom updates for next to nothing before putting your home up for sale.

1. Change Your Shower Curtain

Such an easy fix yet one that people often overlook when putting a house for sale! Choose something tasteful and for a smaller bathroom or one that tends to be dark, look for light colored or even sheer shower curtains. Don’t skimp and opt for a clear cheap plastic liner! Look for a quality shower curtain that doesn’t weigh down or enclose the room making it appear dark and cramped.

2.  Paint those walls

There’s nothing like a fresh coat of paint to make a room look fresh and clean. Choose a color that’s calm and soothing that will appeal to most.

3. Paint Your Vanity Cabinet

A small can of paint can transform and old and dated bathroom vanity into something that looks new and modern. Paint out 80’s oak in a dark espresso that’s perfect for the executive buyer or opt for a soft white if you want to go for a spa-like effect that is a little more traditional without looking dated.

4. Change Your Hardware and Fixtures

Swap out your cabinet handles and knobs for something that looks more contemporary and if budget allows, do the same with your faucets and light fixtures. Try to stick to a matching finish, such as satin nickel or chrome, as matching it all instantly makes for a more uniform and high-end look.

5. Frame Your Typical Builder’s Mirror

Nothing makes a bathroom look more generic and well, cheap, than the basic builder’s mirror over the vanity. Since replacing it may mean having to deal with wall repairs depending on how it was hung; framing it is a simple solution that’ll make it look instantly chic. Head to a home improvement store and pick up some moulding. If you measure in advance you can have the pieces cut for you at the store. Paint it to complement your vanity, mount it using construction adhesive or screws and then fill and paint any seams. Voila—a new bathroom mirror!