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Home investment pays off now, and when you sell

Ways to make life better now, and increase property value

The idea of home as sanctuary has never been more appealing than it is right now. Our homes represent shelter, comfort, and familiarity. They also—for most of us—represent the single biggest financial asset we’ll ever own. That’s why renovation and refreshing them does a double dose of good—making us feel good now and bumping up real estate equity.

These days, there’s a third angle: the home is now—for millions of people—also where they work. For most, it’s a boon: there’s evidence that home based workers are happier and more productive.

To make the transition, people are looking for ways to create functional, comfortable office spaces within their homes. That means thinking about sound, lighting, privacy, and technology issues—many of which can be solved or improved through renovation or redesign.

Photo by Kelly Lacy from Pexels

The pandemic that drove people home to work will fundamentally change the way we think about collective and remote working. Shorter version: the home office is here to stay. That means in the long term, a home space that’s wired and set up for business will likely be another selling point. In the meantime, you’ll have a room where you can work efficiently and comfortably.

There’s a lot of chatter from cooped-up urbanites about wanting to embrace countryside living. It’s less of a pipe dream than it once was. As online shopping and home delivery of everything ramps up, living in a rural environ no longer means restricted access to consumer goods and services. You can buy everything, from fresh steaks to hundreds of styles of glasses, and have them shipped to the front door.

Photo by Werner Sevenster

Location will also determine future value, so choosing the right area to live is important. If your strategy is to buy a fixer-upper in an under-valued area, do spend some time researching  which home improvements add the most value before calling in the contractors.

Generally speaking, projects that add square footage, such as home extensions, attic conversions or a garden room, will boost value. Increasing the number of bathrooms is a good idea, but not at the expense of cutting too far into other living space.

Think too about the property’s “ceiling value”—the average top price determined by average market forces in the area. Some improvements have a lateral effect on value—they may not directly increase the asking price but they will attract more offers, sparking the possibility of higher offers and more competitive bidding. Do your homework here.

In the end, your home is more than an investment vehicle—it’s a living environment. Take some time now to examine it and think about ways you might improve it. That can be as simple as changing the layout of your living space. Or it can involve removing internal walls, installing soundproofing, increasing space with an extension, or adding an en suite shower room.  

Any and all of those changes will make life more comfortable and beautiful now, and increase the home’s value. That’s good for your family, and your finances.

Feature photo by Vlada Karpovich from Pexels

This is a collaborative post. It was not reviewed prior to publication.

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