Have you been pushing outdoor renovations to the bottom of your home improvement list? You’re not alone. Many homeowners tend to prioritize indoor projects. But potential buyers often look to outdoor spaces to see how well you’ve updated and cared for your home over time.
Whether you have the resources for a bigger project or you’re looking to do some quick touch-ups and DIY-style improvements, we’ve put together a list of renovations that will help you get the most from your outdoor spaces and raise the value of your home.
1. Build a deck
Whether you’re looking to better enjoy your backyard or appeal to potential home buyers, building a deck is one of the most impactful ways to make your outdoor space more functional and attractive. It also ranks as one of the highest-value home improvement projects, meaning you’ll be able to recoup more of the cost when you sell. If you’re on a budget and willing to DIY, you can also build your own deck at a much lower cost.
2. Replace your front door
Replacing your front door can be a surprisingly effective way to add value to your home. According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2017 Report, installing a more secure, energy efficient steel front door is the second most cost-effective home renovation, yielding a 90.7 percent return on cost. That’s not counting the money you can save on energy bills.
3. Increase your home’s curb appeal
Your home’s curb appeal can make a big impression on potential buyers, which is good news—most of these updates are simple and inexpensive compared with other home renovations. Consider applying a fresh coat of paint to the outside of your house or front door, patching or re-paving your driveway, and even cleaning up the landscaping in the front of your house. Taking care of these details says a lot about how well you’ve cared for your home and may even help you recoup costs on renovations in other areas of your home.
Landscaping your outdoor spaces will go a long way in increasing your curb appeal and well-cared-for. Although gardening and landscaping projects require upkeep, some plants are much easier than others to maintain. Choose drought-tolerant varieties that are native to your region. They’ll be easier to care for, save you money on water, and help you and your home’s next owners live more sustainably.
5. Build an outdoor kitchen or fireplace
If you have the resources for a larger renovation, outdoor kitchens hold a lot of appeal for potential buyers and are actually counted as outdoor rooms. In addition to giving your space a more upscale and luxurious feel, installing an outdoor kitchen will transform your backyard into a space to spend more time, entertain guests, and enjoy the seasons. Don’t have the budget? Outdoor fire pits and fireplaces offer a more cost-effective option, and home buyers also list these additions as desirable features in a backyard.
6. Replace the garage door
As one of the most visible elements of your home, the garage door is something buyers pay attention to. If yours looks old or out-of-style, replacing it with a new door that looks neutral and modern will immediately improve your home’s curb appeal. Depending on where you live, you can expect to recoup about 77 percent of the cost of this improvement, says Remodeling Magazine.
7. Make eco-friendly improvements
To attract the increasing number of eco-conscious home buyers on the market, consider additions that will make your home more sustainable. Whether you’re looking to start small or transform your home into a green home, there are a variety of projects to fit every budget and timeline. These include installing solar panels, putting in synthetic grass, replacing plants with succulents and other drought-resistant varieties, building drainage systems that use excess water to irrigate your landscaping and more.