May 6, 2019
Home projects that we have the best intentions to complete often remain line items on our to-do lists. Maintaining a home requires a lot of work. As with any investment, it is important to evaluate what improvements can be made to keep your home on target for maximum return. As you make updates, ensure the work you put in is worthwhile and will truly benefit the long-term value of your home. Here are several considerations to keep in mind as you decide what projects to prioritize.
Keep up with regular maintenance and repairs.
Put the effort into minor repairs, and routinely service heating and cooling equipment and other appliances. Oftentimes, these are easy to overlook, but prioritizing these chores is valuable in the long-run. Putting off maintenance or ignoring repairs could lead to more complicated and more expensive issues later on. Don’t underestimate the impact a minor leak, crack, or malfunction can have on the overall integrity of your home. When work is put in at a steady pace over time, the upgrades will help your home hold, or potentially boost, its value. Plus, keeping up with these tasks will spare you the hassle of dealing with them all at once if you decide to sell. Block off a few hours each month to tackle projects on your own or enlist the help of a professional.
Tread cautiously when it comes to trends.
When making updates, especially with the intention to appeal to prospective buyers, always consider practicality over trendiness. Have you ever looked at yellowed flower wallpaper or bright green shag carpet and wondered why it was ever popular? Trends are cyclical, but not everyone will find any given trend appealing. Get the most for your money by spending it on upgrades that will stand the test of time. Neutral colors suit flooring, countertops, and walls best, and simple fixtures can still add sophistication to your space. There are plenty of ways you can still add personality to your living quarters while keeping the permanent features of your home primed for a variety of preferences. Embrace your favorite trends by selecting décor that lets your home express your style.
Plan ahead for bigger investments.
The longer you own a home, the more likely you are to have to pay for bigger, more involved projects for the benefit of your home’s value. Appliances, roofs, and carpets all have limited lifespans. Wear and tear will eventually take its toll, no matter how diligent you are at caring for them properly. As time passes, there will also be new ways to improve your environmental footprint by upgrading windows, appliances, and heating systems to more environmentally-friendly options. Oftentimes, the projects that will increase the value of your home the most come with the largest price tags. An effective way to prepare for these expenses is to consistently set money aside in a savings account that is dedicated to home repairs and upgrades. If you can commit a small portion of your paycheck to the long-term well-being of your home, you will be investing in its ongoing value.
Maintaining a home is an ongoing investment, and there may be times when you need additional funds to manage the expense. Did you know you can utilize the equity you have established in your home to pursue a value-boosting project? Home equity loans and home equity lines of credit could offer you the opportunity to borrow from the equity in your home at a competitive rate in order to bridge the gap between what you have saved and what you need to spend. Discuss your financial need with your local lender who will be able to walk you through your options and discuss the finer details.
Jim Oosterman is the Senior Vice of Melrose Bank and a lifelong resident of Melrose. He can be reached by telephone at 781-665-2500, online at melrosebank.com, or on Facebook at facebook.com/MelroseBank.