Sure, you can spend a lot on something purely for the personal pleasure of having it- like that outdoor Jacuzzi under the attached gazebo – or you can go the practical route and make an improvement that will increase your home’s market value. But be forewarned! You can’t expect to always recoup your costs on both counts. Just because you put $25,000 worth of improvements into your home doesn’t mean that your house is worth $25,000 more!

It may not sound very exciting, but it’s the basic improvements you make to your home that may have the greatest return on its value: a beautiful new bathroom won’t make up for a leaky roof. Below are some examples of a few improvements that usually pay off-and some that rarely make a difference (no matter how much you paid for them) when it comes time to sell your home.

Painting
If you’re planning to sell your home in a year or two, a fresh coat of a neutral-toned paint could make the sale easier. A professional exterior paint job may also recoup close to 75% of its cost. Let’s face it- we all like things fresh-looking.

Kitchen
With just a few basic improvements, your kitchen can practically pay you back with interest! New paint, wallpaper and flooring are always appreciated; plus, you might even consider sanding, staining or painting worn-looking cabinets. Replacing old cabinet hardware is a low-cost improvement that makes a big difference in appearance. According to the Remodeling magazine 2019 Cost vs. Value report, the average spent on a major kitchen remodel is around $66,000, while a minor one averaged $22,500. The full kitchen remodeling recouped 69% of its cost and the minor remodel was valued at 75%.

Area conversions
Generally speaking, increasing the functional space of your home holds its value longer than remodeling just to make a house look better. It’s also much less expensive than adding an addition to your home. Remodeling magazine reports that converting attic space into a bedroom, for example, usually costs around $49,500 and returns about 73% of that cost.

Extra bathroom
At an average cost of $47,500, a new bathroom addition can recoup about 55% of its total cost, according to Remodeling.