The Houston real estate market has been red hot since last year and despite high mortgage rates and low inventory, it looks to be heating up even more as summer rolls in. Strike while the iron is hot: consider these perfectly doable and affordable home improvements and renovations to get the highest offer on your home.
Take Care of the Basics
Depersonalize the Space
Potential buyers are more inclined to make an offer on your Houston home if they can see themselves living in it from the get-go.
Start by decluttering your space and endeavor to remove as many personal items as possible. If you think you need help in the decluttering department, 93% of real estate agents suggest that you hire the services of a professional organizer.
But if you are quite the accomplished DIYer, you can make your house show-ready for as little as $50. Depersonalize your space by toning down your accent wall with a fresh coat of paint, preferably that of a neutral color. And, of course, put family pictures in storage for the meantime and replace them with generic landscape photos.
Make Sure Your Home is Clean and Organized
How to improve home value? 85% of real estate agents have said a good old deep clean helps sell a home for top dollar.
No time to do it? Full-home cleaning will set you back a reasonable $220.
Don’t forget to air out any lingering chemical and cigarette smells and clean your dirty carpet. Carpet stains and stench can give buyers a reason to negotiate a lower home sale price.
Fix Any Obvious Repairs
It goes without saying that you need to address a leaky roof or your unsightly vinyl siding with cracks and holes. But to ensure you will not be taken aback by an extra diligent homebuyer, prepare ahead and have a pre-inspection
to know the needed home improvements before selling.
Replacing the lights is an easy thing you can do to increase your home value. Flickering lights and dingy lighting can distract buyers from seeing the beauty and potential of your home. Adding a lamp or two and replacing the LED lighting of your bathroom, landscape lighting, and corner lighting can instantly make your space brighter and bigger. New inexpensive light fixtures can also make your home in Houston look larger, more modern, and fresh.
Touch Up Paint
Painting the interior of your house in neutral colors with high-quality paint and replacing the wallpaper are sure ways to increase home value.
Paint touch-ups around the home cost as little as $60. However, you can spend as much as $8,700 if you believe you can recoup the cost of repainting the entire interior of your home from the final home sale price.
Update Outdated Fixtures, Like Lighting, Door Knobs, Light Switches, or a Faucet
How to increase the value of your home? It’s the little things. You might think not to invest in these minor fixtures as the buyer might replace them anyway, but these fixtures are critical in making an excellent first impression. According to real estate experts, updating outdated fixtures gives the buyers the impression that the home feels fresh and relatively new.
Knock Out Big Maintenance Items
How to increase home value? You don’t need to replace your HVAC unit year after year. A standard HVAC system lasts roughly twenty years before it needs replacing.
If your HVAC unit is not quite old yet, the best you can do is have a trained technician inspect it and perform necessary maintenance. You can then put any buyer’s mind at ease by showing them the inspection certificate. After all, replacing the HVAC system can cost an eye-watering $7,000. The same goes with the roof; if it’s seven years old and below, proof of inspection will suffice.
Did you know that most home buyers tend to ask about big-ticket items first, such as the roof, furnace, and water heater? Repair gutters and roofs ahead of showings to make sure you preserve your home value, and you can increase your asking price, if possible. If the buyer senses they need to make constant repairs, they could ask for a lower sale price or back out of an offer altogether.
Improve Energy Efficiency
Low Flow Fixtures
Impress environmentally-concerned buyers by highlighting that you’ve switched the old toilets to low-flow ones. Go for toilets that flush a maximum of 1.6 gallons of water only.
Energy Efficient Appliances
Convince buyers that it’s worth living in your house long-term by showcasing your home’s energy efficiency with energy-efficient appliances, lighting, and windows. Buyers would see that they could save on utility bills, plus the more modern appliances are attractive to boot. Investing in appliances, lighting, and windows with an Energy Star symbol enables you to negotiate a higher sale price.
Smart Home Features
Smart home features like lighting, safety gadgets, carbon monoxide detectors, fire detectors, and thermostats can make a home look sophisticated. Almost half of home buyers rate intelligent home features essential in their home search. Smart lights can sell your house an impressive seven days faster than other homes.
Other highly sought-after innovative home features are high-end Wi-Fi access, keyless entry, video doorbells, wireless home security systems, and automatic furnaces.
Consider Curb Appeal
Who would’ve thought that enhancing curb appeal is one of the best investments to sell your home. If your home’s exterior doesn’t appeal to buyers from the moment they step out of their cars or look you up online, any interior home renovations may not count. The good news is that it doesn’t take much to enhance your curb appeal. Basic lawn maintenance such as trimming overgrown hedges and trees, fertilizing the lawn, and cutting the grass yield a whopping 500% return on investment.
Paint the Outside
One of the home upgrades that add value the most is repainting the outside of your house. You’re likely to increase your home’s value by $7,500 with a fresh coat of exterior paint.
Like curb appeal, a simple touch-up of chipped or flaking paint or trim and repainting of the front door can do wonders.
Replace Garage Doors
Last 2021, garage door replacement was hailed as the #1 best home improvement for getting an ROI. One tip, however: if your garage door is hidden from immediate view, at the back of the property, or on the home’s side, it may be more practical to invest in other home improvement projects.
Design for the Target Audience
Depending on where in the Houston area you are, contemplate which unique feature will add the most value to your home. If you own a single-family home in one of the neighborhoods in the Greater Houston area, perhaps investing in pet-friendly and child-friendly amenities will give that extra boost to your home’s value.
Not many houses in the city housing market have that extra space for home offices. If you’re a landlord renting homes downtown, a home office might make you stand out from the competition and empower you to charge more than the average rent.
Houston has the perfect weather for a dip in the pool and barbecue. Pools and outdoor kitchens quickly add about $30,000 and $10,000 to your home, respectively.