How Well Do Home Improvement Projects Pay Off?

Home improvement

Home improvement is the name of the game for many homeowners, and many people are doing projects they hope will add value to their houses if or when they sell. But how well do those improvements pay off?

The answer is a bit complicated. Typically, improvements that save energy or water, like replacing appliances, sealing drafts, or upgrading insulation, can make your house more comfortable and cost-efficient, which can boost long-term resale value.

But even a fresh coat of paint or updating light fixtures can help improve the look and feel of your home, and most of these projects are relatively cheap. Similarly, home improvement projects that lower utility bills and reduce environmental impact, like installing smart thermostats or replacing old windows, can boost resale value and improve your quality of life.

However, more expensive improvements, such as adding a primary suite or renovating the kitchen, can be more challenging to justify financially. According to the 2021 American Housing Survey, around 20% of respondents who took on such projects had to sacrifice other expenses or go into debt to complete them.

Ultimately, you should decide what projects are right for your home and budget. And remember, while resale value is important to consider, you should renovate for your own comfort and enjoyment, too. Especially if you plan to live in your home for a while, Walczak says. Otherwise, you may end up with a showplace that doesn’t feel like yours.

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