There is a common misconception that you will enjoy a return on investment on all home upgrades. Unfortunately, this is not the case. There definitely are home improvements that increase property value, but there are also some that simply don’t. In fact, some could actually make your home harder to sell without the “right” buyer.
1. Installing a Swimming Pool
This is one of the most common home upgrades home sellers are surprised to learn may make their property less desirable. There is no denying that having a pool is a nice luxury feature to have in the warm months, but it is also a lot of work to maintain. Not to mention, even if potential buyers don’t mind the upkeep, they may not want to budget for the extra expenses. Between increased electric bills, the cost of chemicals, higher insurance premiums, and risk of lawsuits, it will take a buyer who really wants a pool to recoup the money you spend installing one.
2. Extensive Landscaping
There is a different between having a nicely landscaped property and one that looks like it will require every spare minute you have to maintain. Elaborate landscaping can be viewed as a burden. Not to mention, plants and landscaping materials can be very expensive, but most buyers won’t be familiar with the value of such an extravagant display.
3. Highly Customized Designs
You really have to be careful with highly customized home upgrades because you may have a hard time finding a buyer who shares your enthusiasm for these designs. For example, you may feel that marble in the bathroom makes the space look fit for the Taj Mahal, but a buyer may not even realize a custom-ordered material has been used.
4. Outdoing the Neighborhood
There is such a thing as overdoing it. You might think remodeling with contemporary fixtures, custom water fountains, and recessed ventless fireplaces will give you an edge over other homes for sale in your neighborhood. In all fairness, a buyer interested in these high-end features will likely be looking in a more expensive area. Being the standout house on the block is not always a good thing.
5. Room Conversions
Turning two rooms into one giant agility course for your dog or adding soundproof foam to a game room for the kids may be great for you, but it likely won’t be a home upgrade buyers will be looking for! It is certainly fine to make the conversions, if they suit your lifestyle, but keep your expectations grounded when it comes to selling the house.
6. Small Square Footage Increase
Turning your attic into an extra bedroom or finishing the basement is a home upgrade most buyers will appreciate. Building a small sunroom in the front of the house or adding an extra bathroom in an awkward location is a change you may not make your money back on.
7. New Carpeting
Installing wall-to-wall carpeting because you want it is great. However, you don’t want to invest in carpet in hopes of selling your home faster. The buyer may have every intention of installing environmentally-friendly bamboo or cork flooring. Maybe they love carpet, but the color you selected does not suit their personal taste.
It is your home, so you should make changes that appeal to you. However, it is important to realize that when you prepare to sell your home, these improvements may not be as profitable as you expect them to be.