If you’re trying to improve your property’s resale value or you just want to find an affordable home project, the choices can be overwhelming. Some renovations have significant returns on your investment, while other projects can quickly spiral into a time and money sink.
There are many home improvements that have an enormous effect on resale value with a relatively small upfront cost. Consider these 5 small renovations if you’re looking for a fast and easy home improvement!
Update your kitchen surfaces
The kitchen is one of the most expensive rooms in your house to renovate. Between appliances, cabinets, and plumbing, it’s rarely a good investment to entirely redo your kitchen before you sell your house.
If you have an out-of-date or unattractive kitchen, consider updating your countertop materials. Countertops are at eye-level, making them one of the most striking features of the room. This easy step towards kitchen remodeling gives the entire room a fresh appeal and makes cooking a joy.
As always, trying to tackle a home DIY project by yourself will help you save on labor costs. However, when it comes to installing a countertop, you need to ensure you have the right skills and prior experience. It comes down to the materials you choose: if heavy marble, granite, or quartz countertops are installed improperly, they can create stress fractures and cracks in your cabinets. For these heavy materials, you’ll also need at least two people and a decent knowledge of how torque works.
If you’re determined to DIY your kitchen and aren’t confident about installing countertops, an alternative project is to give your cabinets a refresh. Sanding and repainting your cabinets can turn an old kitchen into something you’d see on HGTV!
Create a low-maintenance yard feature
The yard is the first thing a prospective buyer sees. If your yard is cluttered, messy, or requires a constant level of maintenance, you instantly damage your first impression.
A landscaping renovation does not have to be costly. Pulling out dying plants crawling up the sides of your house and replacing them with low-maintenance landscaping features makes a world of difference.
Start with a low-maintenance flower bed. Rip out the weeds, get your soil tested, and establish a plan for plants and mulch you hardly have to work on more than once a year.
Our best tip: contact a landscaping professional in your area who has experience with local native plants. Native plants will grow seamlessly in your climate and require virtually no care — and they’re the best plants to attract beautiful native birds, butterflies, and other wildlife.
Add a privacy fence
Privacy is always a desired feature of a home, but in dense neighborhoods, it can be hard to come by. Installing a high-quality privacy fence is a huge asset for families with small children and animals — or if you want to sunbathe in the open air with a little more privacy.
Privacy fences come in a variety of materials. Privacy chain link fences are amongst the most durable and secure options. Wooden privacy fences have a more rustic feel, but they can wear down quickly and require maintenance and painting. Brick fences are sturdy, versatile, and attractive, but can be extremely pricey. The choice comes down to your budget and personal preference.
Installing a privacy fence yourself can be a hefty task, especially if your property is sloped or uneven. If you have friends or family members who can help you install the fence, we encourage you to give it a try. If not, it’s worth it to pay for a professional builder for optimal structural integrity and durability.
Always discuss building a fence with your neighbor first. Additionally, you should check your homeowner’s association (HOA) rules and city codes to check if you need a permit or if your fence has to meet any special requirements.
Re-caulk the bathroom
The caulk sealing your bathroom fixtures to the wall is something you don’t often notice — unless it’s gone wrong. Mold, stains, and cracks in the caulking make your bathroom look old and unclean, and have a serious detriment on the aesthetic of the room. Additionally, old, shrinking caulk can trap moisture, creating serious wall damage and becoming a breeding ground for hazardous mold.
Re-caulking can have an enormous impact on the overall look and feel of your bathroom, and also improve your home’s valuation. If you purchase the right tools and follow the correct instructions, removing and replacing caulk is a surprisingly easy renovation. It includes these basic steps:
- Use a metal scraping tool to remove the old caulk
- Spray the exposed area with mold-killing spray
- Tape off a neat line
- Use a caulk gun to apply the caulk
- Smooth out the edges with a corner-grooving tool
Caulking should be replaced every five to ten years, depending on the quality of the job and the material. The fresh, clean look of fresh white caulk around your shower, bathtub, and sink makes your bathroom look brand new.
If you’re not confident in your DIY skills or you don’t have the time, paying a professional to re-caulk your bathroom is relatively inexpensive and guarantees quality.
Re-paint the front door
Adding a fresh coat of paint to your front door is a remarkably simple renovation, but it makes a huge impact. A bold, shining door that’s been sanded to perfection gives your home a warm and inviting feel before you even step inside.
There’s little reason to call a professional painter for this job, unless you want to take the project a step further and repaint your window sills and other parts of your home’s trim. You can complete this project in less than a day, provided you give the three coats enough time to dry.
We highly recommend removing your door from its hinges to get the job done. Not only does it make painting a whole lot easier, but it also prevents your doorway and floor from hard-to-remove spillage.
Additionally, ensure you sand and prime your door before applying a new coat of paint. A rough, textured surface will never produce attractive results, no matter how neat your paint job is.
We hope you’ve been inspired to take on these small improvements for an effective property renovation. Now, get to the hardware store and start DIY-ing!
Carolyn Mitchell is a freelance writer and content strategist with a passion for home décor and maintenance. She can often be found re-painting and updating the furnishings in her home, and she is also a dedicated cat mom to two adorable kitties.