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Home Improvement Trends are evolving. Whether you are thinking of selling your home or want to improve your quality of living, when making home improvements, the return of investment is important. As we are seeing a trend of rising prices in the housing market, many people are thinking of investing in their homes to profit on their homes. Others are making home improvements to ensure their home suits all their needs in the event they will be spending extended amounts of time there.

Not all Home Improvements add value to a home. Updating a home is sometimes a necessity and those updates are expected, which may maintain the home’s value in a competitive real estate market. We’ll analyze what add value and has a high ROI and what does not.

Home Improvement Trends 2021

What’s motivating homeowners to make Home Improvements Trends?

The Covid-19 Pandemic has changed the way most people view their homes.  Many homeowners have been making home improvements, due to the amount of time they have been spending at home.  Right in line with the influx of home improvements is the increase in budget since most vacations and events were cancelled last year, allowing for many to be able to afford those improvements.

What are the best ways to invest in your home’s infrastructure?

Kitchen and bathrooms typically sell a home.  While they still hold weight in the purchase, many people have home gyms and home offices on their lists.

Home Gyms

Home Gyms have become a new trend for many, since the pandemic had closed down all of the gyms for a considerable amount of time.  If you’re someone who used to enjoy going to your gym or country club, the resale ROI of a home gym or spa-like features may not matter to you as much as the ability to enjoy those improvements while you live in the home.  However, the long-term benefits of making one room in your home into a home gym, far outweigh the investment of paying for a high-end gym membership for the same amount of years.

539 Shadowbrook Trail

Home Office

Another big trend is the Home Office. Working remotely has become the new normal for many people and they need a designated space, preferably with a door for privacy.  French doors are popular for home offices, so that those outside the door can be seen but not heard.

Home office

What’s The ROI?

For those who are not looking to sell their homes, the return of investment is not the most important factor, their level of comfort is.   I will compare the difference between the ROI of a Major Improvement and a Minor Improvement and some investments that are smart whether you are selling or not.

Research by HomeLight has shown that simple improvements like upgrading to Stainless Steel Appliances has a HUGE ROI. They calculate that a $4,299 investment in Stainless appliances adds $5,868 in value, which calculates to a 141% ROI.

Home Improvement Trends
Stainless Steel Appliances have a 141% ROI

Minor kitchen renovations also have better ROI than major renovations. According to FortuneBuilders.com, a minor kitchen remodel returns an average of 98.5% while a major kitchen remodel only returns 91%.   The same goes for bathroom repairs. A major bathroom renovation only yields a 93.2 % ROI, whereas a minor bathroom remodel, (like changing toilets, vanity and fixtures) returns an average of 102%.

Here are examples of a minor renovations, where wallpaper or dark paint was removed and the rooms were repainted:

Here’s an example of a major bathroom renovation where everything was replaced:

Major bathroom renovation.

Finished Basements are a huge home improvement trend that add living space and value!

Many homebuyers are looking for a finished basement in their new home.  Even if the home has a basement that isn’t finished, if the POTENTIAL to finish a basement is there, the house will sell more easily than a home that does not have a basement.

Today’s finished basements are going beyond the extra family room.  We’re seeing finished basements that have Theater Rooms, Full home gyms, additional kitchen, full bathrooms and game rooms that would knock your socks off!

Home Improvement Trends
A finished basement with billiards room that has custom themed carpeting

Finished Basements also add value to a home, but how much is the ROI? Depending on the size of the basement, you could add up to $50,000 to the value of the home. The ROI depends on the amount of money you spend on the remodel, however, added living space adds value. If you spend $40,000 on the finished basement and get $50,000 more value, the ROI is 125%. At the same time if you spend $60,000 on finishing the basement and only get $50,000 more on the sale of the home for it, the ROI is only 83%.

What’s the BEST ROI for Home Improvement?

Improving your curb appeal is an investment that goes a long way. Project that gives more than 100% ROI are exterior and landscaping improvements.  Updating your flower beds around the exterior of the home give it a fresh facelift that holds its value. Seeding your lawn to make it lush and green gets you all your money back plus a whopping 317%. WOW ! 😲 This improvement has the highest return on investment out of all the renovations on both Costs vs. Value and the National Association of Realtors®’ lists.

Having great curb appeal is crucial to grabbing buyers’ attention and interest.

A few other easy and valuable curb appeal improvements are pressure washing the exterior of the home. If you do it yourself, you are investing sweat equity, if you hire someone else, the ROI varies.  Painting or improving the front door and replacing house numbers are also good investments in improving your home’s curb appeal and do not cost a lot.

Spring Real Estate Market
Power washing the exterior of your home is a quick and easy way to improve your curb appeal!

So if you’re thinking about selling, make sure your curb appeal is appealing! It could make the difference of a potential buyer clicking on your listing, or not.

Ultimately, if you are thinking of selling your home, a major improvement is only necessary if your home is very outdated.  Otherwise minor updates, like paint and carpet will suffice. These are the best way to get the best ROI. At Nancy Kowalik Real Estate Group, we give our sellers a comprehensive “Honey-Do List” that when followed, will put your home in the best light to sell FAST and for TOP DOLLAR!

If you love your home and are not planning on moving, major updates many not get you the ROI you desire, but in the long run, the feeling you have when you love your home and everything about it is PRICELESS. 


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