Simple and inexpensive home improvement projects will not only increase the value of your home, but raise the “wow” factor as well. Each of the following DIY projects can usually be done in less than a day and save you a great deal of money.

1. Add a backsplash

A simple way to add panache to your kitchen is to add a new backsplash. Choose a style and color that complements other elements such as cabinetry, wall color, lighting, and other appliances.

If your budget is somewhat tight, consider using a peel-and-stick option. They’ll do the trick as well as please the eye.

2. Replace the kitchen sink and faucet

Since your kitchen is the heart of the home, it’s important to make it shiny and functional with a high-quality sink and faucet. This is one of the first items a potential homebuyer will quickly notice if it’s not up to par, and replacing it is easier than you think.

If possible, buy a low-flow model that reduces water usage by as much as 30%. Today, energy efficiency is critical, whether you’re selling or staying in your home. Replacing both the sink and faucet should take only a few hours.

3. Update your front door

An elegant front door adds class and charm to the entire façade of your home. It’s the first element people see and should therefore be showcased, preferably by using a complementary color.

Expect to recoup a big chunk of your investment if you buy a new one, especially if it’s steel (over 120%). However, you can still punch up the pizzazz by refinishing your existing door with either paint or stain. Add fresh hardware to your refurbished door and you’ll be the envy of your neighbors.

4. Install stylish crown molding

Crown molding is like the “icing on the cake” when it comes to finishing touches. Although you might not recoup your investment, it’s still a feature that adds both value and interest. Most potential homebuyers appreciate attractive crown molding when they’re looking for the perfect home.

5. Declutter and get organized

Decluttering, cleaning, and reorganizing your home can be just as valuable as improvements that make it look great. Prospective buyers need storage and like to see space for their possessions.

Even if you plan to live in your home for a while, taking the time to organize it will revitalize it, give you a sense of accomplishment, and create a harmonious atmosphere.

6. Freshen up the landscaping

What is the first thing people see when they look at your home? The landscaping. A well-manicured yard makes a great first impression and can either lift or depress the entire look of your home. In other words, if the outside looks shabby, everyone will assume the inside’s a dump as well.

A basic landscaping project shouldn’t cost more than $500 to get it into tip-top shape, including planting and fertilizing. Use colorful plants and shrubbery in key spots throughout the yard to highlight certain areas such as along the walkway to your front door or around a tree.

Consider planting the “endless summer” variety to get beautiful blooms nearly all year long. With just a little money and creativity, adding value to your home is a shopping trip away. Whether you’re planning to sell or stay, boosting the equity in your home is always a justifiable expense.


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