Property prices are rising across the United States as elsewhere. In Hays County, home values have risen by an average of 7 percent, which indicates a thriving real estate market. According to the Chief Appraiser at Hays, David Valle, the average market value for a home is $245,787, an increase from last year’s figure of $229,548. This growth is seen across all property categories, including private homes.

A similar trend has been noted in Philadelphia where single-family homes have seen an overall 10.5 rise in their median market value, with prices rising to $124,600 from $112,800. Increasingly popular neighbourhoods like Brewerytown and the nearby Strawberry Mansion have seen a 47 percent rise between the 2018 and 2019 assessment.

Rising property prices happen from time to time due to factors the average homeowner would likely have no control over, but it is possible to ride the wave and make the most of it once a homeowner knows what to do. Making improvements to a home can increase its value and fetch the owner more cash than it would have ordinarily. This can help pay for any tax increases that may accompany rising property prices. What are the best ways to improve a home to increase its value?

Start with the kitchen

The kitchen is the heart of the home for many people, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it’s number one on this list. A reasonable kitchen remodel should fetch about 60% to 120% of the initial investment. However, such improvements should never go overboard. A kitchen that is fancier than the rest of the neighbourhood or the house may not even pay for itself and may be unattractive to buyers if it puts too much of a premium on the property in question.

Painting the kitchen in a fresh, modern colour should be one of the first considerations as it can help uplift the look without costing too much. Upgrading equipment to energy-efficient models, if necessary, can also be a good move. According to, experts in getting a Bridging Loan the cost of upgrading a kitchen may be lowered by considering an ex-display kitchen from a large DIY store or a showroom, or even a second hand kitchen still in great shape.

It is best to stick to a modern design with general appeal, rather than something with too much of a special touch. Many buyers would likely not be interested in anything too unusual or out of fashion. Depending on your location, highlighting features like an outdoor kitchen or a pizza oven may turn out to be a major boost.

Next, the bathroom

If the kitchen is the heart of the home, the bathroom is the workhorse. Adding an extra bathroom to a home with only one bathroom can make it more attractive to buyers. Homeowners may be able to recoup as much as 80 to 130 percent of initial investment by making such an addition. Any underutilised spaces or extra rooms could be potential sites for a new bathroom.

Making upgrades to existing bathrooms is another acceptable approach. It’s a good idea to keep the look modern with under-mount sinks rather than drop-sinks, marble or granite countertops, and wall-mounted lights instead of overhead lighting. Upgrading the bath area by installing a shower with body sprays may return as much as 85 percent of investment. Heated flooring should also be considered, especially if it won’t add too much to the cost of the upgrade.

Increasing the living area

Depending on the kinds of buyers you are looking at, it may be a good idea to create additional living space. It may take the form of a kitchen extension or an additional bedroom or two, depending on the size of your budget. A garage may be converted to a bedroom or additional living room and a loft may be converted to a study or large bedroom, depending on what makes the most sense for the house in question.

Reinventing existing space can save funds as adding more square footage with a new room is bound to be expensive and can end up costing significantly more than the initial budget. When increasing the living area, homeowners ought to consider that potential buyers are more likely to be drawn by versatile rooms.

Adding a deck

As more people opt for a stay-at-home vacation, outdoor living spaces are becoming increasingly popular. The value of a home can increase if a deck is added and the backyard is spruced up. Adding a deck may fetch about 65 to 90 percent of the initial investment, depending on the cost of the upgrade. The materials used matter, as do the design of the deck.

Other upgrades

Beyond the above mentioned upgrades, other useful upgrades that can add to the value of a home include addition of new doors, installing new windows and creating parking space.


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