9 Home Improvement Ideas to Increase the Value of Your Property

Considering home improvements? Here are 9 that will boost functionality, appearance, and overall value.

March 8, 2024

Navient may receive compensation when you click on links associated with this Navient Marketplace. Navient is not being compensated for any application, quotation, or the purchase of any financial products.

9 Home Improvement Ideas to Increase the Value of Your Property

Exploring ways to boost your property’s value through strategic home renovations is a wise move. 

Why invest in these upgrades? It’s not just about the potential profits and return on investment when selling. A well-cared-for home decreases your maintenance costs and increases your overall financial security. 

Plus, there’s the immediate benefit of enjoying a more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing living space. Here are some practical home improvement ideas to increase the value of your property that will pay off both now and in the long term. 

1. Kitchen remodel

The kitchen is often considered the heart of the home, and it’s consistently a focal point for potential buyers. Breathe new life into your kitchen and increase its appeal by: 

  • Upgrade to high-quality countertops: Investing in durable and visually appealing countertops, such as granite, quartz, or marble, can instantly elevate the look and feel of your kitchen. These materials are not only aesthetically pleasing but also durable and long-lasting, making them attractive to potential buyers.

  • Modernize cabinets: Consider refacing or replacing outdated cabinets with modern, stylish options. Opt for quality materials and refinishes that complement the overall design of your kitchen. Additionally, installing features like soft-close hinges and organizers can enhance functionality and appeal to buyers.

  • Update appliances: Upgrading to energy-efficient, stainless steel appliances can not only improve the aesthetics of your kitchen but also attract eco-conscious buyers. Choose appliances with modern features and finishes that align with current trends and enhance the overall appeal of the space.

  • Enhance lighting: Adequate lighting in the kitchen is essential, both for functionality and aesthetics. Consider installing task lighting under cabinets, pendant lights over islands or breakfast bars, and recessed lighting for overall illumination. Adding dimmer switches can provide flexibility and create ambiance.

  • Install a stylish backsplash: A visually appealing backsplash can add personality and charm to your kitchen while also protecting the walls from splashes and spills. Choose a durable and easy-to-clean material, like subway tile, glass mosaic, or natural stone, in a design that complements your kitchen's style. This is a minor kitchen remodel or DIY project, but can be a massive selling point. You can find ideas for how to do this on realtors’ websites and remodeling magazines. 

  • Update fixtures and hardware: Replace outdated faucets, sinks, and cabinet hardware with modern, stylish options that complement the overall design of your kitchen. Pay attention to finishes and choose cohesive hardware throughout the space for a polished look.

Aim for a balance between functionality, aesthetics, and quality to get the most value when you resell, in order to easily recoup your investment.

2. Bathroom remodel

Similar to the kitchen, bathrooms play a pivotal role in shaping a home's value and appeal. A well-designed bathroom with modern amenities can add value to your property. Here are some bathroom remodels that can have a big impact and add the most resale value to your home:

  • Modernize fixtures: Upgrading fixtures like faucets, sinks, showerheads, and toilets can instantly refresh the look and feel of your bathroom. Choose stylish and high-quality fixtures that complement the overall design and provide improved functionality. Features like water-saving faucets and low-flow toilets are also attractive to eco-conscious buyers.

  • Update tile work: Refreshing or replacing tile work in the bathroom can have a dramatic impact on its appearance. Consider updating the flooring, shower surround, or backsplash with modern and durable tile options such as porcelain, ceramic, or natural stone. Choose colors and patterns that complement the overall design and style of the bathroom.

  • Upgrade shower or tub: Upgrading the shower or bathtub can significantly improve the functionality of your bathroom. Some popular upgrades include walk-in showers with features like a rainfall showerhead, handheld shower wand, and built-in seating. Alternatively, if space allows, consider adding a freestanding bathtub or a jetted tub for added luxury.

  • Enhance ventilation: An upgrade to your bathroom ventilation might sound boring, but it’s crucial to prevent mold, mildew, and moisture damage. Consider upgrading the ventilation system with a quiet and efficient exhaust fan or installing a humidity sensor that automatically activates the fan when moisture levels rise. Improved ventilation can help maintain a healthy indoor environment and preserve the integrity of your bathroom.

3. Curb appeal upgrades 

A kitchen and bathroom remodel might wow potential homebuyers, but it’s the curb appeal upgrades that get them in the door. First impressions matter, and the exterior of your home sets the tone for potential buyers. Here are a few ways to boost your curb appeal: 

  • Landscape: Planting colorful flowers, shrubs, and trees can add dimension and interest to your yard. Consider adding mulch, edging, and decorative rocks to create defined borders and pathways. 

  • Repaint the exterior: Freshening up the paint can significantly improve the appearance of your home’s exterior. Choose a neutral color scheme that complements the architectural style of your home and blends well with the surrounding landscape. Pay attention to details: trim, shutters, and doors, and consider adding accents or contrasting colors to highlight architectural features.

  • Upgrade your front door: The entry door is a focal point of your home's exterior, and even a small update like a fresh coat of paint can do big things for its appearance. If you want to take it a step further, consider upgrading to higher-quality materials like wood, fiberglass, or steel, and consider adding decorative features such as sidelights, transoms, or decorative glass inserts. Also consider a garage door replacement. 

  • Outdoor Lighting: Adding outdoor light fixtures can enhance both the beauty and safety of your home's exterior. Install pathway lighting along walkways, accent lights to highlight landscaping features, and porch lights to illuminate the entryway. For added security and convenience, you also might consider installing motion sensor lights.

  • Driveway and walkway upgrades: Repairing or replacing your driveway and walkways can improve the overall appearance and functionality of your real estate property. Consider options like stamped concrete, pavers, or natural stone for a durable and visually appealing surface. Ensure proper drainage to prevent water pooling and erosion, and consider adding edging or borders for a polished look.

4. Energy-efficient upgrades

Embracing energy-efficient upgrades not only aligns with contemporary environmental consciousness but also significantly enhances the overall appeal and functionality of your home. Homebuyers, increasingly mindful of sustainability, often prioritize properties with energy-efficient features. Some key areas to consider when incorporating energy efficiency into your home include: 

  • Energy-efficient windows: Upgrading to new windows not only enhances insulation but also helps regulate indoor temperatures. This can result in lower heating and cooling costs while providing improved comfort and noise reduction. 

  • Programmable thermostat installation: Installing a programmable thermostat allows for precise control over your home’s temperature, optimizing energy usage. This thoughtful addition not only contributes to cost savings but also reflects a commitment to modern, eco-friendly living. 

  • Enhanced insulation: Adequate insulation is a fundamental aspect of energy efficiency. Adding insulation to walls, attics, and crawl spaces helps maintain a consistent indoor temperature, reducing the reliance on heating and cooling systems and ultimately lowering energy consumption. 

  • Roof maintenance: Regular roof maintenance is crucial for preserving energy efficiency. Ensuring your roof is in good condition prevents energy loss and potential water damage, contributing to a sustainable and resilient home. 

  • Investing in energy-efficient appliances: Upgrading to energy-efficient appliances, such as ENERGY STAR-rated products, not only reduces your utility costs but also appeals to eco-conscious homebuyers. These appliances are designed to consume less energy without compromising performance, making them an attractive investment for both financial and environmental reasons. 

5. Finished basement or attic conversion

Unused basements or attics are versatile spaces that can be reimagined and repurposed to cater to various needs and preferences, contributing not only to the functionality of your living space but also enhancing its market appeal. Consider the following possibilities when contemplating the conversion of your basement or attic: 

  • Home office: Transforming your basement or attic into a dedicated home office provides a secluded and focused workspace. With the rise of remote work, a thoughtfully designed home office can add significant value to your property by catering to the demands of a contemporary lifestyle. 

  • Guest suite: Converting the space into a comfortable guest suite offers a welcoming retreat for visitors. Equipping it with a private bathroom and cozy amenities not only provides convenience for guests but also adds a touch of luxury to your home, increasing its overall desirability.

  • Entertainment room: Whether it’s a home theater, gaming room, or a multifunctional space for family gatherings, this conversion adds an element of entertainment and relaxation to your home, allowing for a designated space to unwind and enjoy leisure activities. 

  • Fitness area: Whether it’s a home gym, yoga studio, or workout space, converting your basement or attic into a fitness haven not only enhances your lifestyles but also appeals to health-conscious buyers. 

Each of these conversion options contributes to the adaptability and allure of your home, catering to a diverse range of preferences and lifestyles. You not only expand your living area but also increase home value, making it a more enticing and functional space for both current and future residents. 

6. Deck or patio addition

The addition of a deck, patio, or outdoor kitchen goes beyond mere aesthetics, promising an extension of your living space and a heightened appreciation of your property. When considering such an enhancement, several key options come into play:

  • Expanding living space: A well-designed deck, patio, or outdoor kitchen provides a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor living. This expansion of living space becomes a versatile canvas for various activities, from leisurely family gatherings to alfresco dining and entertaining. 

  • Durable materials: Opting for durable materials is paramount in ensuring the longevity and resilience of your outdoor addition. Materials such as composite decking or natural stone for patios not only withstand the elements but also require minimal maintenance, preserving the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor space over time. 

  • Landscaping integration: Incorporating landscaping elements is a good way to merge your outdoor living space with the natural surroundings. Strategically placed plants, trees, or even a well-designed garden can enhance the ambiance, providing a sense of tranquility and connection to nature. 

  • Built-in features: Consider incorporating built-in features like seating areas, fire pits, or outdoor kitchens to elevate the functionality and visual appeal of your outdoor space. These elements add convenience and create a cohesive and well-designed environment for relaxation and entertainment. 

  • Outdoor kitchen considerations: If an outdoor kitchen is part of your vision, think about practical elements such as durable countertops, weather-resistant appliances, and adequate storage. This addition can redefine your outdoor experience, turning it into a culinary haven for gatherings and celebrations.

In essence, the addition of a deck, patio, or outdoor kitchen is an investment that seamlessly blends aesthetics and functionality. As an integral part of your home, this outdoor oasis becomes a focal point for relaxation, entertainment, and the appreciation of natural surroundings. It’s important to note that swimming pools can be high-end investments that don’t necessarily add much to the average cost per square footage. 

7. Smart home technology integration

Integrating smart home technology into your living space goes beyond mere convenience; it revolutionizes the way you interact with and experience your home. The incorporation of intelligent devices not only enhances comfort but also contributes to a more efficient, secure, and personalized living environment. When contemplating the integration of smart home technology, consider the following key aspects: 

  • Convenience and comfort: Smart home technology significantly elevates the convenience and comfort levels within your residence. With the ability to control various aspects of your home through a centralized system or mobile app, you gain unprecedented control over your environment, from adjusting the thermostat to setting the mood with smart lighting. 

  • Smart thermostats: Installing a smart thermostat offers precise control over your home’s heating and cooling systems. These devices learn your preferences over time, optimizing energy usage and providing a comfortable living space while reducing utility costs. 

  • Security systems: Smart security systems often include features such as motion detectors, doorbell cameras, and remote monitoring, providing real-time insights into the security of your property, even when you’re away.

  • Lighting controls: Implementing smart lighting controls allows you to customize and automate your home’s lighting scheme. From adjusting the brightness to setting specific lighting scenes for different occasions, smart lighting adds both ambiance and energy efficiency. 

  • Home automation features: Explore the possibilities of home automation, which can include integrating smart devices like smart locks, smart blinds, and smart appliances. Automation features enable you to synchronize various aspects of your home, streamlining routines and creating a more responsive and intelligent living space. 

The adaptability and customization offered by these systems cater to a spectrum of preferences, transforming your residence into a modern, connected haven that aligns with the demands of contemporary living. 

8. Flooring upgrades 

Upgrading your flooring can not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of your home, but also significantly impact its value. The choice of flooring materials plays a crucial role in this endeavor, and the decision can be influenced by various factors, including the specific needs of each room and the potential energy benefits associated with certain materials. 

  • Materials matter: When contemplating flooring upgrades, consider materials that strike a balance between durability, aesthetics, and functionality. Hardwood flooring, for example, adds a timeless and elegant touch to living spaces, while laminate or vinyl options offer cost-effective solutions with a wide range of styles. Tile, on the other hand, provides durability and is an excellent choice for high-traffic areas, especially kitchens and bathrooms. 

  • Energy efficiency: While not traditionally associated with energy efficiency, certain flooring materials can contribute to a home’s overall thermal performance. Carpets and rugs, for instance, provide additional insulation, helping to retain warmth and reduce energy consumption during colder months. Additionally, materials like cork and bamboo possess natural insulating properties, providing a comfortable and energy-efficient flooring solution.

  • Underfloor heating options: For an innovative approach to energy efficiency, consider underfloor heating systems. When combined with materials like ceramic tile or engineered wood, underfloor heating not only adds a touch of luxury, but also enhances the overall energy efficiency of your home, providing even and consistent warmth. 

  • Sustainable choices: Opting for sustainable and eco-friendly flooring materials can also appeal to eco-conscious homebuyers. Materials such as bamboo, cork, and reclaimed wood are renewable resources that contribute to a greener living environment. 

  • Room-specific considerations: Tailoring your flooring choices to the specific needs of each room is essential. For instance, moisture-resistant materials like tile or vinyl work well in bathrooms and kitchens, while plush carpets may be an excellent choice for living rooms and bedrooms, providing comfort and sound insulation. 

9. Upgrading home systems

Upgrading essential home systems, such as HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning), plumbing, and electrical components, is a proactive approach to maintaining the seamless functionality of your residence. These critical systems are the backbone of a comfortable and efficient living space, and investing in their upgrade not only ensures their reliability but also results in several benefits for homeowners:

  • Efficiency and performance improvement: Upgrading HVAC systems, plumbing, and electrical infrastructure often involves incorporating advanced technologies and more energy-efficient components. This results in improved performance, reduced energy consumption, and lower utility costs over time. 

  • Enhanced safety standards: Outdated or malfunctioning home systems can pose safety risks. Upgrading these systems ensures that they meet current safety standards and adhere to modern building codes, providing peace of mind for homeowners.

  • Long-term cost savings: While there is an initial investment in upgrading home systems, the long-term cost savings can be substantial. Modern systems are designed to be more energy-efficient, resulting in lower utility bills and reduced maintenance costs over the years. 

  • Preventative maintenance: Regular upgrades and replacements serve as a form of preventative maintenance, addressing potential issues before they escalate into costly repairs. This proactive approach ensures the longevity and reliability of essential home systems. 

How to pay for home remodeling projects

If you don’t already have the funds for a home improvement, securing them can involve some research. Here are some sources commonly used for renovations. Which you choose will depend on your personal financial situation. 

  • Cash savings: Paying for home improvements with cash is often the most cost-effective option because it avoids interest charges and debt accumulation. If you have sufficient savings or an emergency fund set aside, using cash to fund your projects can help you avoid taking on additional debt and maintain financial flexibility.

  • Home Equity Loans or Lines of Credit: Home equity loans and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) allow homeowners to borrow against the equity in their home to fund home improvement projects. These loans typically offer lower interest rates compared to personal loans or credit cards, and the interest may be tax-deductible in some cases. Keep in mind that using your home as collateral means you risk foreclosure if you fail to repay the loan.

  • Personal loans: Personal loans1 are unsecured loans that can be used to finance home improvement projects. They typically have fixed interest rates and repayment terms, making them a predictable option for budgeting purposes. Personal loans may have higher interest rates compared to home equity loans or HELOCs, but they do not require collateral. Typically, these are better for smaller home improvement projects. 

  • Credit cards: Using credit cards2 to finance home improvement projects can provide convenience and flexibility, but it can also be dangerous. It’s important to be cautious of high interest rates and fees. Consider using a credit card with a low introductory APR or a rewards program to maximize benefits. Paying off the balance in full each month can help avoid accumulating interest charges. These are only recommended for very small home improvement projects, as debt can accumulate quickly. 

  • Refinancing: Refinancing your mortgage to take advantage of lower interest rates or to access equity can provide funds for home improvement projects. Cash-out refinancing allows you to borrow more than your current mortgage balance and use the excess funds for renovations. Keep in mind that refinancing typically involves closing costs and may extend the repayment period of your mortgage.

Get funding for your next home improvement project

Examining home improvement ideas is crucial for enhancing the aesthetic appeal, functionality, and overall market desirability of your home. This strategic approach not only improves your current living experience, but also serves as a wise investment for potential future sales or financial flexibility. 

If you’re exploring funding options to upgrade your home, give Navient Marketplace a try. Our platform effortlessly links you with lenders, providing customized offers that match your financial needs and credit profile. Just enter a few details about yourself and get personalized results within minutes.

Disclaimer: This blog post provides personal finance educational information, and it is not intended to provide legal, financial, or tax advice.

1 Navient customers are invited to consider personal loan offers through our partner Fiona. Navient has not shared your information with Fiona and is not involved in the personal loan application process in any manner.  All information is submitted directly to Fiona and any personal loan offers are made directly by participants in Fiona’s lending platform, powered by Even Financial.  Even Financial, Inc. is the industry-leading embedded financial marketplace and independent subsidiary of MoneyLion Inc. (“MoneyLion”) (NYSE:ML). Checking your rate will not affect your credit score. Eligibility is not guaranteed and requires that a sufficient number of investors commit funds to your account and that you meet credit and other conditions.

Loan proceeds may not be used for postsecondary educational expenses, including refinancing federal or private student loans.

2 Navient has partnered with CardRatings for our credit card products. Navient and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions. reviews, analyses & recommendations are Navient's alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. 

Get matched with a personal loan offer in 60 seconds or less.

Get Connected

Stay up to date on the latest offers in the Marketplace by Navient!

By submitting this form, you agree to receive emails from Navient and its subsidiaries.