When you’re contemplating selling your home or buying a new one, this is a question that likely takes on a great deal of significance for you. How much a home is worth is a deciding factor for many people when they’re looking at moving on, and it will determine whether one can afford the home they want to buy. Here are some of the main factors that influence home value.
You’ve heard this cliché before in every movie with a real estate agent in it, and it’s actually very true: it’s all about location. A home located in a nice, relatively crime-free neighborhood near important services that’s included in a great school district will have a significantly higher value than a comparable home in a mediocre area. Since you can’t really change this one after the fact, it’s definitely an important factor to keep in mind while home shopping.
How well a home has been maintained can also influence home value. An immaculate home requiring a few minor fixes is worth more than one that needs some major work, obviously. Particularly when you’re looking at big-ticket issues like the roof, siding, or heating and cooling systems, condition can really sway how much people will pay for a home.
The home’s age also plays into this. Older homes oftentimes mean older appliances and “guts” like plumbing and electric. That could mean that those items will need maintenance or replacement sooner.
Size, Floor Plan, Updates
More square footage generally equals more value. More bedrooms, bathrooms, and storage space do, as well. People also prefer more traditional floor plans, and you’ll find that “open” floor plans are very desirable and therefore worth more cash. Whether the home has been updated makes a big difference in value, as well, but keep in mind that neutral updates hold more universal appeal. Even certain paint colors in different areas of your home may affect your home’s value.
The Current Market
It’s no shock that the housing market has an impact on home prices. The housing market is a complex beast, but you can certainly apply some basic economics: the laws of scarcity and supply and demand definitely makes a difference in the housing market. Check out our other post for more info on the housing market.
Simple Projects You Can Do to Increase Your Home’s Value
Whether you’re looking at making your home more desirable to raise the asking price, or you’re just looking to build a little equity, there are several small projects you can do to boost your home’s value.
- Improve landscaping and make it low maintenance. At a minimum, keep the yard cleaned up.
- Add fresh, desirable paint colors; paint over bright, dark, or other potentially offensive colors
- Improve energy efficiency through inexpensive means so that your energy bills are lower when the home goes on the market. This can lead buyers to be more comfortable with a slightly higher payment.
- Kill the popcorn ceilings. People hate them!
- Make sure everything is spic n’ span! Hire a cleaning service, if you must.
- Update outdated bathrooms. They have a high ROI.
- Focus other updates in the kitchen for high returns.
The Bottom Line on Home Value
All of the above items factor into home value, and it’s also important to keep in mind your home’s historical value and the prices of comparable homes in your area. If you’re contemplating moving, but need more time, or maybe want to do some home improvement projects first, Sell and Stay offers a way to release some of your equity while you plan your next moves. Learn more on our website, and feel free reach out with any questions!