Whether a house is recently purchased or has been lived in for a while, the fastest way to increase its value is with a plan. Upgrades made intentionally rather than on impulse are more effective overall. Start slowly, making a list and prioritizing. Do research or talk to realtors after the plan is formulated so that the return on these improvements can be discovered. Some improvements add more to a home’s value than others.

Redo the Kitchen

Buyers of all sorts have focused on the kitchen for a long time and it still holds sway over the most recent wave of new homeowners. A new suite of appliances, a new countertop, and fresh flooring, all result in a new look that is coordinated and invigorated from its past incarnation. A fresh coat of paint on cabinets or walls, with updated hardware, also breathes new life into a kitchen.

Enliven Floor Plans

Millennials wanted an updated kitchen first and foremost; an open floor plan that featured flexible living space was only second on their list of desired features. One means of adding usable square footage is by finishing a basement. Attic conversions are also an option. It is important to remember that a basement can cost between $10,000 and about $27,000 to convert, depending on its size, while an average attic conversion cost almost twice that.

Lower Energy Costs

Saving money currently and making more when selling the house down the line is always desirable, and this is achieved by lowering the home’s energy costs. Younger buyers look for R-Values on insulation and for windows that have low-E coatings, both of which are effective efficiency measures. Water heating is also important, as it accounts for 15% of a typical home’s energy costs.

Clean Things Up

While many means of boosting a home’s value involve redoing rooms and repurposing spaces, a simple step that can be overlooked is simply making things look fresh and new through a thorough cleaning. Wash the house, its windows, its walks and driveway, and its fence if there is one. Add fresh paint where necessary. Especially if a home is going on the market, making it look clean is a relatively easy means of increasing curb appeal.