3 Smart Home Renovations that Return the Most after Selling a Home

Many home sellers are looking for a smart way to increase the value of their home before selling it, and one of the best ways to do this is to make the right kind of home improvement before listing it. But be careful, not all of them actually pay off – here are 3 types of home renovations that are proven to return the most.

smart home renovations

Home renovations are not just about making more money when selling a house – it’s also about adding value to your home and showing your potential buyers that you’ve taken good care of the property until now and that your home is a great place to live in.

This means that neglecting a house for a long time and deciding to do a few fixes right before listing it won’t help – at all. Maintaining a house that is worth living in takes time!

Increasing and adding value to a house is only possible if you’ve been keeping the house up-to-date until now and if the house is in a reasonable condition at the moment.

Buyers certainly have different opinions and priorities, but a house that has obviously been very uncared for and which shows absolutely no warmth or love whatsoever – such a house probably won’t sell for quite some time.

One thing is for sure: taking good care of the state of your home – on the inside and on the outside – ultimately pays off. Certain home renovation costs can add up to as much as $40,000, which is why the right kind of home renovation can be very appealing to potential buyers.

You’ll be taking a big load off their shoulders AND you could even make a little bit more money when negotiating the house price.

After all, who wouldn’t want to buy a house that is looks nice and will continue to look nice for a long time thanks to the regular fixes that have been made so far?

But What if You Have to Invest a Lot of Money? Will Large Investments in Home Improvements Pay off? 

This is one of the biggest mistake home owners make before selling, and also one of the things they regret afterwards.

The thing is: not all home fixes increase the value of your home.

Investing $2000, $10,000 or $20,000 is no guarantee that this investment will pay off once you decide to sell.

The sum you invest doesn’t matter. It’s the actual type of home renovation that returns the most – if done properly and with a clear and reasonable purpose in mind.

What Value-Adding Home Renovations are – and What They’re NOT

The thing is: certain investments, certain fixes just have to be made. The plumbing, the roof, the windows, the pipes – all that needs regular care (only house owners know how much time, money and energy can flow into that).

This is the price of owning a house – there are big expenses, but selling them as “home renovations” to potential buyers probably isn’t the right thing. Mentioning them is great and important, but they don’t necessarily have to bring additional value.


Most buyers expect a house to be ready to move in and hope to find a place that is ready to rock. Maintenance costs and repair work is difficult to sell as an additional renovation project that will increase the value of your home.

1. Insulation Upgrades – Energy-efficiency Pays off!

Buyers really like to hear about recent insulation upgrades. One of the reasons is because it affects how much the house costs them – energy-efficient home improvements help them trim their power bills, which is an absolute win-win.

Another thing that makes this home improvement pay off is that it’s not very expensive in the first place – with as much as $2,000 you can upgrade your current insulation and improve the overall energy-efficiency level of your house.

2. How a Kitchen Renovation Can Increase the Value of your Home.

Kitchen renovations bring a significant payoff for several reasons:

  • The kitchen is considered to be an important room, as families tend to spend a lot of time their;
  • Home renovations that return the most are not the most expensive ones, and don’t even have to involve as much work as initially thought. Just by replacing old elements, installing new countertops or cabinets you can make a difference;
  • Teresa Mears from U.S. News explains in her article about financing remodeling projects that buyers often overestimate how much it would actually cost to renovate a kitchen. House buyers have figures between $40,000 and $50,000 in mind, while the most important kitchen remodeling projects can be done with about $20,000.

What is also important is to do the right kind of kitchen remodel. First, it needs to match the style of the rest of the house – otherwise, you won’t add any value and can’t make a cozy and warm place for people in your house.

Again, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms in a house, considering that the entire family tends to spend time there.

Secondly, you need to make sure you’re distributing your home improvement money wisely: it doesn’t make much sense to invest $50,000 into a kitchen if the house itself is worth $100,000.

3. How Bathroom Renovations Can Pay off When Selling a House.

kitchen home improvements

How to add value to your home with simple bathroom improvements?

Having a clean and eye-catching bathroom puts your home into a new light. Rooms which are frequently used simply need to look presentable and like they have been taken care of.

Fortunately, you can achieve better looks and do a few improvements without taking everything apart in your former bathroom; adding windows, purchasing new bathroom furniture or reglazing a nice tub can do wonders and give your bathroom that quick upgrade it needs.

David Bunton points out that those home renovations which should return the most need to be recorded properly. Keep all records of inspections or certificates which appraisers need to review the work that has been done to make your old house feel like new.