Following the recent riots in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, some experts believe it could result in a hike in semigration to the Cape or immigration. With this in mind, it may be a good time to think about maximising your home’s value to bring you the best financial return if you do decide to sell.
If you aren’t in a position to do a major renovation, here are the focus areas that will bring in the best financial return.
1. The kitchen
The kitchen is the heart of the modern home, so it should be a priority for investment. A more modern kitchen could add additional value to your home, but it’s important to ensure your kitchen renovation budget is in proportion to the price of the house. Spending R100 000 on a kitchen upgrade on a house valued at R1 000 000 will typically not yield a return on investment greater than the cost of materials and building.
Plumbing is a notably expensive aspect of renovations, so avoid moving the sink if you want to save money and limit the complexity of the project. It makes sense to work around the sink, as it’s the focal point of the kitchen.
Some inexpensive ways to renovate the kitchen on a budget include:
- Repainting cupboards or replacing doors with a more modern profile.
- Opting for neutral colours that won’t date.
- Updating your lighting. Consider adding modern light pendants if you can.
- Replacing things like the sink, tap fittings and small appliances.
- Replacing door and drawer handles with a contemporary current and on-trend option.
- New appliances, which you may have envisioned for your new home, can be bought and installed in your current home. Many buyers request these to be included in the selling price and it is becoming a norm to install new appliances when you list your property which are then included in the selling price. Gas stoves are becoming a necessity for buyers (especially because of loadshedding).
2. The bathroom
Having a modern and well-designed bathroom can be a major drawcard for your home. Small changes such as a fresh coat of paint, replacing your shower screen, taps and toilet can be a great way to revamp the space. If you plan on doing a bigger refurbishment, keep the cost down by keeping the existing plumbing in the same place.
Avoid bathroom design trends and stick to fittings that won’t date. If you’re not able to fit a bath in, focus on making your shower beautiful.
Adding a second bathroom is a bonus and a desirable among potential buyers, however, if you can’t fit two bathrooms into a renovation, adding a second guest toilet is also a benefit.
3. Increase Your Home’s Square Footage
If your budget will allow, adding floor space to the main house will serve you well. Extra bedrooms, extended rooms and open plan living are all popular improvements that will undoubtedly increase your home’s value.
The size of your home affects the value considerably, but square footage isn’t the only space that counts. Visual space or how large a home feels also counts. It’s important to make each room in your house feel larger:
- Replace heavy closed curtains with vertical blinds or shutters to let light in – a sunny room feels bigger and more open.
- Adding a single large mirror to a room will create the illusion of a larger space.
- Finally, clear the clutter. The more clutter, furniture and trinkets you have in a room, the more cramped it will feel. Add an attractive shelving unit to an underused space and store your clutter out of sight.
4. Start from the front
Real estate agents talk about “curb appeal” for a reason: First impressions have a major impact on the sales value of your home. Affordable landscaping and other modest enhancements to the front of your exterior can help increase its value to both agents visiting your house and potential buyers looking for a home of their own.
Ways to enhance your outdoor space:
- Make sure your front door and security gate is in good condition. Nothing a fresh coat of paint won’t fix.
- Buy a new and modern doormat.
- A well-kept garden will make sure buyers drive-in, rather than drive-by.
- Outside paving and driveways should be well maintained, oil stain and weed free.
- Consider cleaning your roof and fascia boards. These can really transform the look of your home.