Real Estate Blog for Communities across the U.S.

5 Home Improvements that You Shouldn’t Waste Your Money On

In general, home improvement projects add value to your home. However, some projects are a waste of your time and money, especially if you’re trying to sell your home and you won’t enjoy them very long. Take a look at these home improvement projects you should avoid unless you’re going to be in your home for a while.

Putting in a Swimming Pool

 swimming pool

Image via Flickr by SwimmingPool Pics

Some people love swimming pools and others hate them. They’re a fun way to get cooled off in the summer and get exercise, but they’re also a safety hazard to children, a pain to keep clean, and they raise your insurance rates (just check out homeownersinsurance.com to see for yourself). So, if you don’t plan to be in your home very long, you shouldn’t invest in one because it deters too many buyers. Plus, a swimming pool is a big-ticket item that will cost you lots of money to fill and maintain every year.

Upgrading Plumbing and Other “Hidden” Items

 plumbing

Image via Flickr by zcutlip

There are advantages to having new plumbing, but you shouldn’t go out of your way to make this home improvement because you don’t see much return on your investment. That’s because it’s an improvement that isn’t visible to buyers. The same is true of electrical systems. You’ll enjoy better outlets and power, but homebuyers won’t know you’ve upgraded, so it doesn’t really add value to your home.

Installing Solar Panels on Your Roof

 solar panels

Image via Flickr by Julia Manzerova

If you want to install solar panels on your home to be a good environmentalist, go ahead and do it. However, it doesn’t really add value to you house because most home owners never make their money back. Yes, solar panels do reduce your monthly power bill, but that money doesn’t even compare to the cost of installing them in the first place.

Building Additions that Are Out of Character with the Neighborhood

 addons

Image via Flickr by Brock Builders

Adding square footage to your home with an addition does increase the value of your home, but it isn’t worth the money if it makes your house look out of character in the neighborhood. This is because the value of your home is partially based on comparable homes in your area. So, if you spend $100,000 on a home renovation in a neighborhood of $250,000 home, you’ll never make all of your money back from the cost of construction.

Paving a New Parking Space

 parkingspace

Image via Flickr by Jack Hattaway

Parking is a concern in many cities around the world, but if you have a place to park two or more cars, adding another parking spot isn’t worth your money. You’re better off laying sod to make your yard look bigger. Concrete costs a lot of money and it isn’t pretty to look at.

You can make whatever changes you want to your home to make it more livable and suitable to your needs, just keep in mind that your home improvements don’t always add value. If you’re looking to sell your home in the near future, you should definitely avoid the home improvements on this list.

Resources:

http://www.investinganswers.com/personal-finance/homes-mortgages/9-changes-you-think-add-value-your-home-dont-1884

http://www.investopedia.com/financial-edge/0910/6-things-you-think-add-value-to-your-home—but-really-dont.aspx

http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/3158204?uid=3739928&uid=2&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21102288824181

 

Author Bio: 

Harper Kelly is Florida native hung up on all things social media, writing, and running. When she’s not scoping out the new trails in Tampa you can find her browsing the web and writing about technology, traveling, and home improvement. Follow her journey on Twitter @harperkellyh.

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One Comment

  1. I really liked this article. The points made in it are really valid. Though these improvements may affect the quality of life, they rarely have a dollar for dollar return on the investment when it comes time to sell. It is always a good idea to keep your home within the norm for the neighborhood – but create or install one WOW feature that makes your home stand out.

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