If you’re in the business of flipping houses or want to invest in a property where the housing market is hot, consider Salt Lake City. According to this 2019 real estate analysis, the population in Salt Lake City is growing, but the number of homes has remained largely the same, sending rental properties on an uptick. This offers considerable opportunity to flip and sell homes for a good profit or buy a property to lease out. Here are some tips for you to raise the value of a property in Salt Lake City.
Give it Curb Appeal
By definition, “curb appeal” is the attractiveness of a home for sale as viewed from the street. There are a number of ways to do this to your property for sale or for rent, and here are some of the most profitable:
1.Work on the Driveway
The first feature prospective buyers or renters will see and use on your property is the driveway. As they pull up, the slightest crack or pothole could hint at the property being a hotbed of neglect, so fix the driveway. An important question to ask when fixing or building a new driveway is, should it be asphalt or concrete? Some homeowners will say that it boils down to personal preference, but in Salt Lake City you should consider the weather.
Driveways will expand, contract and crack more often in areas like Utah, thanks to the seasonal freezing and thawing. The area has also been pummeled by a variety of natural calamities spread over a period of years. While these events happen far apart and don’t mean you should worry too much, their impact on your driveway should guide your choice.
Long story short, a concrete driveway may be good for long-term use, but costs about 40-60% more than asphalt to fix or replace. An asphalt one is more commonly used, and it costs less to maintain or replace, which would likely be done after about 20 years. Depending on the age and condition of the driveway, you should consult an asphalt paving service provider in Salt Lake City to know how much you’ll need to increase your property’s curb appeal.
2.Do the Landscaping
Fixing or adding a decent landscaping feature to your property can be the most cost-efficient way of increasing its value. A mere $500 to $3,500 spent on landscaping can add 5.5% to 12.7% to your home’s value. So assuming your home is worth $300,000, adding a few plants and flowerbeds could raise its value to a minimum of $16,500 while spending more on landscaping by adding more plants, shrubs or even a tree could raise your price to $38,100. Note that a home that has larger, older trees and plants adds value, as buyers will perceive that the rest of the property is well-maintained. Be sure that the front lawn is an even patch of lush greenery and not an uneven quilt of green and brown patches.
3.Add a Deck
A deck is a good addition that could increase your property’s value. The average cost of installing a moderately-priced deck is $10,707, and the value added to the property from this addition is estimated at $7,652, which means that the cost-value ratio of adding a deck is 71.5%. Before you consider adding a deck, be sure that it will actually encourage people to use it. Decks that don’t offer a good view or won’t be used during the warmer months may only end up as useless additions and even scare off potential buyers, as they can add to maintenance costs.
Ditch the Pool
In a location like Salt Lake City, building a pool isn’t advisable for increasing your home’s value. They cost a lot to maintain and in a cold state like Utah, it won’t be of much use to prospective buyers. A pool is more suited to the higher end of the housing market, where buyers won’t be as concerned with the heating or maintenance costs. Such a feature would be more appealing and suited to markets in warmer areas like Florida or Hawaii. In this market, don’t go installing a pool unless it’s heated, indoors and intended for high-end buyers.
Fix the Interior
After you’re done making renovations, repairs or additions to enhance your property’s value and increase curb appeal, the interior of your home is next.
Another way to increase your home’s value is to add special “repurposed” rooms. For example, you could convert a large attic to another bedroom or home theater. A section of or the entire basement can be made into a reading room or game room. Find a way to re-purpose any “extra” rooms of the house, as this can not only add value but avoid having any unused, dark areas in the home.
While installing shiny, new appliances are a decent upgrade, you’re better off upgrading features of your property that increase the value. This includes more energy-efficient insulation and lighting. You may have to put up a few thousand dollars more to improve the insulation and add energy-efficient lighting and solar panels for heating, but it’ll pay off in the long run. People in Utah are becoming increasingly energy-conscious, as the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy reports. If trends like these continue, homes that are energy-efficient may become standard.
The not-so-obvious secret to getting the best offer for your home in the Salt Lake City market is to make only the repairs, modifications or additions that can provide the highest added value, and therefore the most profit. When repairing or modifying a property, start from the outside going in. Remember that attracting potential buyers always starts with curb appeal. Then work on the exterior and the essentials. Resist low return-of-investment additions like a swimming pool, Jacuzzi or a poorly-planned deck. It’s a seller’s market, so strike while the iron is how, and make the most of the opportunities.