Sell High: Top 7 Value-Boosting Home Renovations

Your home isn't just a house—it's where you unwind, work, play, and spend time with those you love. So, every remodel or renovation you tackle should take into account how you live in and use your space. There is, however, another side to home renovation—and one you might not think much about until it's time to pack up and move: resale value. If you're trying to decide between competing ideas like, say, adding a new deck or renovating the attic, one factor you should consider is which improvement will most help you sell your house when the time comes.


The home renovation ideas that add the most value to your house can be separated into three categories: basic repairs and maintenance, improvements in curb appeal, and value-added space and functionality. For instance, if your roof leaks, fixing or replacing it is paramount to the value of your home. Planting a shade tree in the right place will boost both your curb appeal and the energy efficiency of your home in years down the road. Adding wainscoting or replacing your stock trim with something custom may look great and appeal to a designer. But finishing your basement or adding an attic bedroom will bring you a bigger return on your investment when it comes time to sell.


Read on to get an idea of which home renovation projects will give you the most bang for your buck.

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  1. Basement Remodel

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    When considering possible renovations, don't forget what's right underfoot: your basement. A basement has virtually unlimited potential—you can transform a musty, unfinished space into a home theater, workout space, or rec room, complete with pool table and wet bar. Whatever you decide, a finished basement will command a higher asking price when it's time to put your house on the market.


    Related:  Life Underground—10 Beautiful Basement Makeovers

    Zillow Digs home in Bellevue, WA

  2. Deck Addition

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    Once the warm weather arrives, a deck can function as an open-air room—and that additional square footage makes it an attractive feature for home buyers. Wood decks cost less to install, but if you opt for composite materials like Trex, EverGrain, or TimberTech, you'll save time on maintenance—and be able to add a bit more to the asking price come sale time.


    Related:  Eating Out—10 Essentials for Alfresco Dining

    Zillow Digs home in San Jose, CA

  3. Attic Bedroom Addition

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    A common rule of architecture is that if you can't build out, build up. Homeowners can capitalize on this principle by adding an attic bedroom, growing skyward to make the most of their living space. Just be sure to add insulation to keep the room cozy in all weather and install proper flooring material to deaden the sound between floors.


    Related:  Under the Eaves—10 Arresting Attic Rooms

    Zillow Digs home in Coral Gables, FL

  4. Bathroom Addition: Average Cost, $39,578; Value Added, $22,875

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    Having too few bathrooms in a house spells trouble for even the closest, most companionable families. Maybe that's why home buyers look more favorably on listings that have a roughly equal number of bedrooms and bathrooms. So, if you can swing it, plan for a full bathroom or half-bath addition. If there's no space to add a bathroom, renovating an existing bath is a close runner-up in terms of adding home value.


    Related:  20 Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Big

    Zillow Digs home in Sonoma, CA

  5. Major Kitchen Remodel

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    Ask a realtor—beautiful kitchens sell homes. Because modern, functional kitchens are a top priority for home buyers, make sure your remodel focuses on sure-to-please components like strategic storage, new cabinetry, state-of-the-art appliances, and durable, easy-to-clean countertops. If you can't afford to go all out, even a minor kitchen renovation will help boost your home value.


    Related:  7 Ways to Skimp on a Kitchen Remodel

    Zillow Digs home in Newton, MA

  6. Home Office Remodel

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    A home office may not be a necessity for every home buyer, but this small amenity can boost your home value—even if you simply end up remodeling a closet to squeeze an office into your house. When planning your home office, pay attention to lighting, storage space—and security. 


    Related:  10 Space-Smart Ways to Squeeze In a Home Office

    Zillow Digs home in Eatontown, NJ

  7. Vinyl Siding Replacement

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    What homeowner doesn't want easy maintenance? For that, you can’t beat vinyl siding, which offers significant benefits in cost, value, protection, and durability. Today’s vinyl siding is available in myriad designs, textures, and colors. You can even find vinyl siding that simulates the appearance of wood or shake siding—so you get the look without the upkeep.

    Zillow Digs home in Scarsdale, NY

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