Tuesday, May 12, 2009

How To Improve The Value Of Your Home
I recently attended a seminar given by Nelson Pollard of Pollard Appraisals with the answer to the above question as a “Who, What, Why, Where, When” discussion. My blog today covers that discussion.

Who? (As in who should do the work?)
We often think we can save a few bucks with DIY labor. Nelson explained that sometimes that does not add value to your home! If the paint job is messy with splatters and uneven lines you may devalue your home. In some neighborhoods a certain level of quality is expected in the homes, you may want to consider having a renovation done by one the “high end” builders. An addition or renovation by a builder with a reputation for quality adds to both the value and marketability of a home. You can actually use the builder’s name as a selling point. Knowing the neighborhood and the “ceiling” it can tolerate as well as the minimum expectation is important.
Remember sweat equity does not always equal equity!

What should you improve?
Knowing the current value of your home is where you start to answer this question. Then you need to know what the value is of comparable homes in your area. Once you know this, determine what those homes may have that yours does not. For example, if the other homes have an updated kitchen and yours dates back to 1987, you may want to update it…as long as the update does not price you out of the market.
Improvements that always get a good return are attractive front doors, landscaping, and thermal windows. Nelson said the most important improvement is cleaning your house! A clean house always appraises better than one that is not.

Where?
Again, the neighborhood you are in dictates this. Do not increase the dollar value or the square footage out of line with the neighborhood.

When do you improve your home?
ALWAYS continue to improve your home. This should be ongoing.

Why improve your home?
Improve your home in order to sell it. But improve it to enjoy for yourself as well.

An appraiser can perform a “Homeowner Market Analysis” for you. This will include determining the value of your home currently, providing the values of comparable homes in your area, and suggestions on what improvements will add the most value to your home. If you have a long wish list for your home and do not know where to start, this may provide you with roadmap of what to prioritize. If you are considering selling home your home in the next 3 to 5 years, this could help you determine what a reasonable budget would be for the improvements.

If you would like more information about this please contact Nelson at: Pollard_Appraisals@msn.com
Or visit his website:
www.PollardAppraisals.com

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