Now is the time to invest in your home and capitalize on its value. Home prices and home loan rates, while still historically low, have been steadily climbing. This increase in price means that homeowners are racking up record amounts of home equity. Let the following tips inform your decisions on improving your home and its […]

Now is the time to invest in your home and capitalize on its value. Home prices and home loan rates, while still historically low, have been steadily climbing. This increase in price means that homeowners are racking up record amounts of home equity.

Let the following tips inform your decisions on improving your home and its value, whether you’re looking to renovate or sell your home.

THE KITCHEN IS WHERE THE HEART IS

It’s a fact that improvements in high-use, high-traffic rooms, such as the kitchen and bathrooms, have the most impact on your home value. Remodeling a kitchen could give you one of the biggest returns on your investment but even minor remodels can cost more than $20,000! The bright side is that homeowners can expect to recoup around 81% of their investment, according to Remodeling Magazine’s Cost Versus Value study.

A BETTER BATHROOM

Updating your bathroom is another way that you can add value to your home. Even midrange improvements — like new mirrors, sinks and toilets — can increase your home’s value. Extensive renovations, like bathroom additions, are good investments since most homebuyers will value the convenience of an extra bathroom.

MAKE FLOOR PLANS WORK HARDER

Bigger isn’t necessarily better in today’s market, but strategically increasing the amount of living space can help boost your home value. Anything that opens up the space and creates a sense of flow in the house will increase your living space, such as knocking down a nonstructural wall.

THE GREAT OUTDOORS

If a home exterior is well-maintained, including the front yard and backyard, it reflects well on the care that the homeowners put into it. When it comes to curb appeal, even upscale renovations can be considered bargains in the long run. According to a Remodeling Magazine study, new garage doors retain 98% of their value at resale and deck additions recoup an average of 73% of their value.

GO GREEN

Energy-efficient renovations start paying for themselves soon after they’re added. Replacing windows with energy-efficient panels recoup 74% of their value at resale, as the study above suggests. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Energy reports that Energy Star-certified windows can save homeowners up to $465 a year on utility bills. Even strategically planting native trees can reduce energy costs by as much as 50% while raising the value of your home!

When trying to decide how to finance these renovations, consider how much you want to borrow. It can be hard to calculate the best home equity loan* on your own, so work with one of GECU’s home loan professionals. Their extensive knowledge will help you find the right loan that fits your needs.

*All loans subject to credit qualification and approval. The property must be located in the United States, within a 150-mile radius of El Paso County, to include Hudspeth County. Certain fees and conditions apply. Learn how to become a member at gecu.com. Equal Housing Opportunity Lender.