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Which Kitchen Upgrades Help Ensure a Higher Resale Value for Your Home?


(This is the second article in our article series on how to increase your home’s resale value.)

Real estate experts swear by a kitchen upgrade as the best way to increase a home’s value. In one of the sample computations in Remodeling magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report for 2020, a major kitchen remodeling at a midrange cost of $68,490 yields a resale value of $40,127, with 58.6% of the cost recouped.

Depending on the current state of your kitchen, you may need to do just a few touch-ups here and there, a relatively minor remodel, or a full-scale upgrade.

Here’s a checklist to keep handy as you figure out what needs work in your kitchen:

1. Paint

You’d be surprised what a fresh coat of paint can do. At the very least, it contributes to an overall sense of upkeep. And even if your buyer may have a different color in mind, changing the paint is among the easiest and least costly changes to make.

These are the painting projects you can take on to give your kitchen a polished and updated look:

Painting your cabinets. 

Choose a color that complements or provides an interesting contrast to your dominant color.

Painting your ceiling. 

Many interior designers, HGTV points out, believe that painted ceilings give kitchens an unexpected, and much-needed, burst of color. It can also help draw the eye upward or bring high ceilings down for a better sense of proportion. Lastly, it can help envelop your kitchen room in color if you prefer to use the same color for your walls.

Painting your floors. 

Give your kitchen floor the attention it deserves, and watch it bring a new dimension to the way people experience this often high-traffic space.

For hardwood floors, you may have to be a little less green with a standard oil-based porch and floor paint or oil-based enamel, which you need for their better ability to withstand foot traffic.

For concrete floors (especially if they look neglected after all the other parts have been freshened up), go with epoxy paint, which doesn’t dry the same way as traditional paint and gives you a surface that is very hard and durable, making it a popular choice for high-traffic commercial applications.

2. Backsplash

Your backsplash is among the focal points in your kitchen, and there’s nothing quite like the look of updated tilework with spotless grout to capture a prospective buyer’s interest.  Go modern and colorful (glass mosaic) or minimally sleek and timeless (classic subway). Just keep in mind that your choice of color can affect a buyer’s perception of your kitchen size; so if your kitchen is relatively small even after you’ve torn out a wall or two, you may want to stick to white or neutral tones.

3. Floor tiles

Give your tiled floor a thorough cleaning to remove grout stains and to brighten up the color. If that’s not good enough, replace old floor tiles with more modern porcelain tiles (which contain sand in their clay mixture and are made with heat and pressure to make it harder, denser, and less porous than regular ceramic tiles). You can choose colors that match your dominant color or go for contrast, or you can opt for patterned and multicolor tiles.

4. Appliances

Time to transition your appliances and go for a modern look. Stainless steel conveys elegance and sleekness, which is popular among buyers. For uniformity, opt for a similar metallic look and feel for your light switches, drawer handles/pulls, countertops, etc.

To heighten the look of your kitchen as well as simply freshen it up, add a functional stainless steel hood, even if you don’t install a new stove.

5. Sink

A sink that embraces both its utilitarian and decorative functions is a mark of effective modern kitchen design. Such modern design as an apron-front farmhouse sink highlights a sense of customized work, which translates into a perception of higher value.

6. Lighting

The way your kitchen is lit can spell the difference between outdated and updated. Make sure that your lighting effectively rounds out the overall modern look and feel you need to achieve. Your choices include the following:

  • Pendant lights
  • Puck lights
  • Track lighting
  • A modern-design chandelier
  • Cabinet uplighting
  • Flush mount lighting
  • Under-cabinet rope or LED lights

Keep in mind that modern lighting works best with a layered look; a single light source will not be able to effectively illuminate your entire kitchen.

7. Island dynamics

You can’t ignore your kitchen island because its placement commands attention, so make sure that attention is one that will lead to a healthy offer.

Your options include:

  • Hanging a pot rack with fresh new pots and pans, as well as a hanging wine bottle holder
  • Integrating hidden storage and some of your appliances (e.g., a wine cooler, a dishwasher, etc.) into your island
  • Going for a more modern color
  • Repurposing a piece of furniture into an island and making it a point of interest

Need help getting your house off the market for the best price?

At Team Clancy, we can help you organize your upgrades, sort out your listing, and help you find your new house.

Contact us, let us know what you need.