You want to add value to your house. Whether you’re looking to sell or you want a space that feels more like your dream home, there are a number of low-investment DIY ways you can instantly update your space and boost your property value.
Here are the 9 easiest, least expensive methods you can do yourself over the weekend to enhance your home’s appearance, atmosphere, and value.
Painting is the simplest and most cost-effective home improvement. Despite its low cost and time, repainting is incredibly effective at enhancing the value of your home. Recently painted rooms look cleaner and updated, which appeals to homebuyers who want a “fresh” home.
The average cost for a gallon of paint is only $25. You’ll also need to buy rollers, painter’s tape, drop cloths, and brushes.
Opt for light, neutral colors that appeal to a wider audience. A neutral palette can also help create a more open feel that flows between your rooms. Neutral colors also allow purchasers to envision themselves making a home in your house. Good neutral options include pewter, beige, off-white, mauve, stone, and muted tones.
Learn how to paint a room with This Old House’s pro painting video.
You should also consider repainting the outside of your house. Curb appeal is important to homebuyers (and your neighbors). The way your home looks from the road can make or break your home valuation. A fresh coat of external pain can instantly make your home “pop” in a way that will stand out an attract buyers.
2. Rip up carpet.
Carpet is quickly fading in popularity. Not only is it outdated, but it also gets dirty and smelly—which can quickly devalue your home. Carpet is notorious for breeding bacteria, contaminants, and allergens that can ruin the quality of air in your home.
So rip out your old, smelly carpet and replace with hard flooring. Hard floors, especially freshly installed, tend to appeal better to buyers. Tile and laminate are allergen-friendly, easy to clean, and don’t have to be expensive. They’re also easy to install, so you can have fresh floors in just one weekend.
Hardwood floor adds the most value to your home, but wood can be expensive and it’s not easy to install yourself. However, you might actually have hardwood under your carpet. When you pull up your carpet, you’ll likely either have wood or concrete underneath. Both wood and concrete are easily fixed up to create a gorgeous, high-quality flooring that will can add value to your home.
To add warmth and décor to your hard floors, consider using a throw or area rug. These are a great way to pull a room together without committing to carpeting.
3. Say bye to popcorn ceilings.
Popcorn ceilings have become officially outdated and aren’t coming back anytime soon. When buyers see popcorn ceilings, they instantly feel the house is old and uncared for.
But it’s simple enough to get rid of popcorn ceilings. You need a softening solution and paint scraper, and you can easily pull the texture off in a few hours. Get more in-depth directions to remove popcorn ceilings here.
There are two things to note before removing texture from your ceiling. Any homes made before 1980 might contain asbestos. If you start scraping away at your ceiling, it can stir up the asbestos and release it into the air. If you have an older home, you might want to get your house inspected before making any changes.
Removing texture may also impact the paint underneath. After removal, you may need to repaint the ceiling, but a fresh coat of paint adds value and appeal anyway.
4. Fix up the bathroom.
Most homebuyers judge the quality of a house based on the cleanliness of the bathroom. Although replacing your bathroom overall can be a major expense, just a few inexpensive touch-ups can completely update your bathroom.
Some of the simplest bathroom fix-ups include:
- Refresh the backsplash with new tiles.
- Replace frosted glass with clear glass.
- Clean the grout with powerful, natural cleaners like white vinegar.
- Remove rust stain. (You can get rust remover at your local hardware store.)
- Apply fresh caulking around appliances.
- Add a fresh, light coat of paint to cabinets.
- Replace faucets and handles if outdated.
- Replace the toilet seat.
- Install a modern vanity.
5. Go green.
“Going green” can help cut down your energy bill drastically. Despite the initial upfront cost for some green fixtures, you’ll save a lot of money in the long run by reducing your energy bills. This especially appeals to homebuyers who want to cut down their expenses when looking for a new house. Plus, eco-friendly homes are only getting more popular as we’re becoming more aware of our global community.
You can opt for more expensive green options like solar power tiles, but this isn’t necessary to get cost-cutting benefits. Simple energy-efficient fixtures can help. Small green additions that will excite your homebuyers include:
- Low-flush toilets
- Energy-Star certified appliances
- Natural gas heater
- CFLs or LEDs (lighting)
- Dimmer lighting
- Smart home thermostats
- Ceiling fans (decorative and updated)
Water filtration is also an inexpensive addition that will add a bit of luxury to the homebuyers’ experience. This cuts down on the cost of water bottles or having to deal with purifying pitchers.
These are small ways to cut costs, but they also show you care about the details of your home. Homebuyers like to see these small green additions because it tells them you’ve taken good care of your house.
6. Enhance your front door.
Homebuyers decide whether or not they like a house within 7 seconds of entering a home. First impressions are critical, and this starts with your front door. Make sure you have a working doorbell; you may even want to install a Ring doorbell to show you’re an updated, secure house.
You might also want to install or update your awning or portico. People like this because they’re not fumbling around for their keys in the rain, snow, or heat. Adding a small deck or patio can also make the home more inviting.
Don’t underestimate how much paint can do here as well. Painting your door and siding can instantly enrich the curb appeal of your home.
Flower boxes are a small addition that makes a huge impact. You’ve seen flower boxes in pictures of small Italian villas, and the flowers make the house look inviting and homey—even if the villa itself isn’t the cleanest. That’s because flowers brighten and enliven the home, adding a cheerful detail that welcomes visitors and homebuyers.
7. Update landscaping.
Like flower boxes and your home entrance, your landscaping can instantly improve your curbside appeal—which increases your home value. Add color and greenery to make your home look more inviting to passersby.
But you want to make sure the landscaping is done properly. Pruned shrubs show you care about your home, while overgrown plants indicate neglect. You also want to make sure you plant the appropriate vegetation. You want the plants to work well with your geographic area, and they should require little water and maintenance. (You don’t want to use plants that will add more work to your house. The goal is to lower the everyday maintenance of the home.)
8. Repair outdoor fixtures.
Cracks in your pavement or driveway? Worn, faded decks or patios? Fix them up!
Homebuyers are more willing to make renovations inside the home than outside. If they see that your driveway is cracked, your deck is falling apart, or your lawn is destroyed, they might instantly be turned off because they don’t want to incur that expense.
A simple crack repair and re-staining of your deck wood can instantly update the look of your house. If you show that you care for the external features—even against the weather and elements—it shows that you care about your home overall.
9. Brighten your house.
Buyers today want “open concept” homes because they feel larger and cleaner. But you don’t have to pull down all your walls in order to sell. The best way to open up your house is to focus on lighting and space.
Add more lighting to make the space brighter and more cheerful. A well-lit room also shows that you have nothing to hide. Add in standalone lamps and bedside tables or hire an electrician to add recessed lighting overhead. Make sure you’re using modern fixtures with low-energy bulbs. Dimmers also go over well with homebuyers.
Next, get rid of closed, heavy draperies that make rooms feel dark. Light, airy curtains or vertical blinds and shutters can create an open feel for the room. Large mirrors can also make the room feel bigger by giving the illusion of more space.
Get rid of clutter wherever you can. Organization is key to a strong open house. Simply adding a shelving unit or removing a piece of furniture can instantly enliven and open up the room.
You can boost your property value this weekend with just a few DIY tips and tricks. This will make you feel more at home, and it will appeal better to any potential homebuyers that come to visit.
Investing a few bucks here and there can instantly give your home a facelift.
Are you a DIY pro? Give us your weekend renovation tips in the comments below!