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When it comes to adding value to your home – there are some home improvement options that are better than others. In this week’s post we look at five home improvement projects that are among the best for adding equity to your home.

When making home improvements, keep in mind that your return on investment (ROI) will fluctuate depending on where you live, the time of year, the materials you use, and more. In order to increase your ROI, research what comes standard in other houses in your neighborhood. For example, if most houses have 2.5 bathrooms and yours only has 1.5, then adding an additional bathroom to your house would increase your home’s value. In addition, keep the style of home improvements neutral in order to increase your house’s resale value. For example, do not paint your walls bright red or add hand-crafted, ornate tile to your kitchen or bathroom. Although you may be a fan of these improvements, others may not feel the same, and it could mean money down the drain. Instead, personalize your house with colorful pillows, rugs, and accessories that showcase your personality.

1.) Finished Basements

Converting your basement into a finished room adds usable square footage to your home. Finished basements are one of the best ways to increase your home’s value as it creates extra living space that can be used for virtually anything. Converting your basement into a finished room will also provide you with an average return of about 66% of the cost. Not sure what to do with your extra basement space? Some finished basement themes you may want to consider include: creating a sports den – adding a big-screen TV, sports memorabilia, overstuffed couches and carpeting; converting your basement into a lounge – think pool-table, wet-bar, dark hardwood floors, and a card table for game night; building the ultimate children’s play area – incorporating a play set, adding beanbag chairs, arts and crafts tables, and bins and shelves for toys and books.

2.) Kitchen Improvements

Often described as the “heart of your home”, the kitchen is always a good place to invest money when making home improvements.  A minor kitchen remodel may consist of replacing cabinet fronts with raised-panel wood doors and drawers, along with new hardware: replacing wall oven and cook top with energy-efficient models; replacing laminate counter tops; installing a mid-priced sink and faucet; and repainting and replacing flooring. The estimated price tag of a minor kitchen remodel is $18,527, adding $13,977 in value to your home, which is 75.4% of the cost. When updating your home, you may also want to consider replacing any appliances that are more than 10 years old – consider using energy star appliances to help save on your energy bill! They may be a little more expensive, but the money you save on your energy bills over time will make up for the initial price difference.

3.) Bathroom Additions and Renovations 

When properly executed, a new powder room, or an updated bathroom, can add value to your home – but make sure you have space – something too small can be a turn-off for home buyers.  If you are looking to remodel an existing bathroom consider replacing all fixtures, installing a porcelain-on-steel tub with ceramic tile around it. Other bathroom renovations might include a new shower, a new standard toilet, or upgrading your tile floor. If you are considering adding an additional bathroom to your home, National Association of Home Builders’ data suggests that when all other factors are equal, an additional half bath increases a home’s value by 10.5%, but an additional full bath increases the value by 20%. If you plan to undertake a major home improvement project such as an additional bathroom, a general rule of thumb is to plan on staying in your home for at least five years in order to increase your ROI when selling.

4.) Quality Landscaping Upgrade

Quality landscaping enhances the style of your home and makes your exterior more attractive. A neat, well-maintained landscape instantly increases your home’s curb appeal and suggests that your interiors are equally maintained. A review of research by Alex X. Niemiera, a horticulturist at Virginia Tech, found that a well-landscaped home had a significant price advantage over a home with no landscaping. That advantage ranged from 5.5% to 12.7%, translating into an extra $16,500 to $38,100 in value on a $300,000 home. While curb appeal will add value, many landscapers warn to not go overboard, and to keep in mind “neat, clean, and attractive” when picking out landscaping options.

5.) Adding a Deck 

Adding a deck instantly increases the value of your home. If you make your deck and your backyard more appealing, your house will be more appealing to prospective buyers. HGTV claims that homeowners recoup 65%-90% of their investment by adding a deck. The cost of adding a deck to your home varies widely. Everything depends on its size and how many bells and whistles you want to add. For example, built-in seating, multiple stairs, built-in flower pots, customized deck materials, and the size of the deck all affect the cost, but they can affect the percentage of ROI you receive as well.

Want to get started on your own home improvement project? Get the extra money you need today to fund your project with a loan for home improvement from Mariner Finance.

This material was prepared for general distribution. Although all blog posts are intended to be accurate, the information and third-party links provided in the Mariner Finance’s blog are intended for general knowledge and educational purposes only without any warranties, implied or express, of any kind. The posts do not constitute investment, financial or other advice. Authors may or may not be licensed financial professionals; for specific advice, seek the input of a licensed and trained financial expert. Mariner Finance’s blog entries may also be viewed at www.pioneercredit.net and www.personalfinancecompany.com.

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8211 Town Center Drive, Nottingham, MD 21236. Telephone Number 877-310-2373.

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