You've decided to buy a house and are working with a Realtor to find your next dream home. You're in the zone: You've separated your must-haves from your nice-to-haves, you've been prequalified, you've found lots of homes within your budget.
Now, put all that on pause for just a second.
In all the excitement and activity around buying a new home, let's stop for just a minute and think like a seller. When it's time to put this home on the market, what sort of return will you see on your investment? Will you get your money back? Better yet, will you be able to realize enough profit to make your next housing decision?
The potential resale value of your home won't be THE deciding factor in your purchase, but it's an important thing to consider, especially under these circumstances:
You don't plan to be in the house for more than a couple of years.
You're making a small or no down payment.
You're buying close to the upper limit of what you can afford.
While there's no way to know what a home will sell for years from now, there are some factors that universally affect resale value, both positively and negatively. Your Realtor can walk you through assessing these to help you make an educated prediction about your home's future value.
Location. Homes hold higher resale values in areas with high-quality schools, easy access to shopping and activities, parks and other green spaces, and a solid sense of community. Location also includes proximity to things such as airports, rail lines, vacant lots or major highways.
Landscaping and lot. Steep, oddly shaped or oddly situated lots can negatively affect the value of a home and are difficult to improve without significant investment. Unless you're a passionate gardener who can commit to spending lots of time outside, look for a property with established landscaping that's easy to maintain or can be improved in just a couple of growing seasons.
Floor plan. Homebuyers these days are looking for floor plans that are flexible and functional. You get greater resale value in homes with floor plans that work for a variety of lifestyles, including entertainers, families with young children, extended families, and seniors. If you can afford it, spring for at least the second bathroom and third bedroom. Both will make your house instantly more marketable.
Renovations and updates. It's great to find a home that already has all the updates you want, but it's also not typical. Look especially for updated kitchens, bathrooms, windows and infrastructure such as electrical systems, plumbing, HVAC or roofing. If the home doesn't have these upgrades already, this is where you can make a serious difference in your resale value. Avoid renovations that already feel dated, are too high-end to fit comfortably with the rest of the house or neighborhood, or are very specific to a certain style of decor.
We keep telling sellers it's such a great time to be in the market, but don't be fooled: This is a good time for buyers, too! We're starting to see an ever-so-slight uptick in home values across the Roanoke Valley. If you purchase soon and invest in some upgrades, the market upturn should help you see greater resale value over the next several years ahead.
I'd love to talk more about the market, its effect on home prices and how you can take advantage of great timing. Contact me anytime at (540) 793-0442 or firstname.lastname@example.org schedule a time to talk.