5 renovation projects that increase home value

Ideally, a renovation pays for itself when you sell your home. Improve your odds by making sure that the remodelling fits your home’s architecture and the neighbourhood. Tempting as a palatial bathroom might be, losing a bedroom to do so is a big no-no for resale purposes.

A renovation is a chance to put your stamp on your home and to add value at the same time. Updating the kitchen, bathroom and deck, creating an open-concept floor plan and adding an income suite are your best bets to create return on investment.

Ideally, a renovation pays for itself when your home sells. Improve your odds by making sure that the remodelling fits both the home’s architecture and the neighbourhood. If you keep that in mind, these 5 renos can prove a sound investment

The kitchen

A kitchen is the heart of a home, which is probably why it’s one of the biggest factors in the decision to buy a home. It’s also one of the costliest rooms to redo. You’ll want to ensure that your new kitchen fits your cooking and dining needs while also appealing to potential future buyers. All black with stainless steel might be a chef’s fantasy kitchen, but will it translate well to buyers in a family-friendly suburb?

Pick a style that you like and that will last. Knocking down even a half wall to connect to the living room will make the kitchen feel bigger – always desirable. Stay on budget. Kitchen renovations are prone to extreme price creep. It’s all too easy to upgrade to pricier tiles, cabinets and appliances.

The bathroom

A very modest bathroom renovation easily costs $10,000. Start adding a soaker tub, rain-forest shower stall… and your budget can quickly reach $50,000. You may not be able to recoup the cost of the higher-end reno when you sell your house in the future. But clean tiles, updated fixtures and improved lighting add both beauty and value.

Save by keeping the same plumbing footprint, if the existing pipes are in good shape. A higher-end fan that vents to the outside helps to get rid of mold-encouraging moisture – and mold puts a big damper on a home’s resale value. Consider adding a window, as natural light makes bathrooms feel bigger.

The back deck

The rise of BBQ culture and staycations has turned the back deck into a desirable piece of real estate. You don’t need to get fancy; just make sure it’s sturdy and has enough room for a BBQ and some party seating. Because they’re exposed to such extreme weather, a wood deck requires regular maintenance. You might prefer to spend more on materials and use maintenance-free composite decking. It doesn’t rot, and you’ll never have to spend vacation days sanding or staining.

Opening up a room

One trend with staying power is open space. It’s relatively inexpensive to get rid of non-load bearing walls and create an open kitchen/dining/lounging area. At this point, replacing old flooring can pull the newly opened area together. An engineered hardwood or bamboo floor balances cost, durability and selling-appeal down the line.

The income suite

If you can live with sacrificing the basement or top floor of your home, an income suite will help pay your mortgage – or fund future renovations. Before you build, think about the type of renter you want to attract and design accordingly. Make sure you get the right municipal permits, as building without them might mean a city order to tear out your renovations.

If you suspect that your rental suite may become an in-law apartment, plan for the eventual transition. At this stage, it won’t cost much to build wider halls, fit grab bars on stairs and in the bathroom, add a raised toilet and a curb-less shower that’s wheelchair-friendly.

 courtesy Canada Post