My husband Dennis and I are renovating our home ... as a matter of fact its been one reno project after another over several years since we purchased our older home. Has it been worth it from a real estate investment point of view? - well not if we were planning on getting back 100% of our investment. When you're spending money on improvements to your residence its predominately because you're making your house a home wanting it to best suit your needs and tastes. In our case we love our neighbourhood and plan on staying for sometime so its worth improving the home - making it 'our own'. When planning a renovation ask yourself why are we doing this - for better enjoyment of your home? To save energy costs (new furnace windows etc)? or for resale? Of course the wiser the choices you make on the reno projects you take on and the more professionally they are done the higher percentage of return you can expect to receive when you do go to sell. As your home is usually your biggest investment it does make sense to keep in mind resale value when making choices regarding the renos. It's wise to take into consideration how long you expect to stay in the home when choosing what and how much $ you'll spend. In addition be sure to consider the value of your home when choosing the calibre of renovation. For example if your homes value is approx $200,000 it would not make financial sense to add granite countertops and hardwood flooring as most future buyers won't pay for those upgrades (arborite countertops and lino would be more suitable) - however if you add granite countertops and hardwood to a $500,000 + home you're return on investment will be more positive. Unless you're expecting to sell your home soon I would tend to stay away from trendy finishing choices - timeless and neutral for the core elements in your home (flooring cabinetry etc) is always best from a resale point of view. Instead add the trendy touches and colours in your accessories such as cushions and artwork.
Here’s a look at the return on investment you can expect from 25 of the most popular home renovations, according to the Appraisal Institute of Canada:
Bathroom and kitchen renovations are the real winners, providing a return on investment of about 75 to100 per cent, followed closely by exterior or interior painting at 50 to 100 per cent.
Other safe bets include basement renovation, garage construction, window/door replacement, rec room additions and fireplace installation, which return about 50 to 75 per cent, as do exterior siding and upgrades to flooring or furnace/heating systems.
You can expect a slightly lower return on investment (25 to 75 per cent) with concrete paving and roof shingle replacement, as well as installing central air conditioning or building a deck.
The lowest return on investment comes from landscaping, asphalt paving, building a fence or interlocking brick walkways, or even installing a home theatre room, which all return about 25 to 50 per cent. The home renovations that are least likely to increase property value are skylights, whirlpool tubs and swimming pools, which return between 0 and 25 per cent
I'm all for making improvements that make your home a reflection of you and your lifestyle. Before you take on your next renovation project give me a call as I'd be happy to provide you with a list of reputable local experts to hire for your project + I'll provide you with my professional opinion and guidance on choices that will not only suit you and your family but provide you with good future resale value.