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Home Repairs That Pay You Back When You Sell

By: Motley Fool
Posted: 5/17/2014 11:45:00 AM
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In most cases, making home improvements right before you list your home to sell is a losing proposition. You won't get a decent return on your investment. You'll be lucky to break even.

The sad truth about major remodeling projects
Experts have studied the return on investment in common home-improvement projects, and the results are in. For 2014, according to Remodeling magazine, you'll do well to recoup 49% of the costs of a remodeled home office. A major kitchen remodel that costs more than $50,000 does a little better: You may recoup 75% of your outlay. A good new front door has one of the highest recoup rates at about 97%.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't make strategic improvements to your home before you sell. Put yourself in home buyers' shoes and imagine their first impressions as they step into your entryway. Making sure these things are in top shape can help you sell your home more quickly. Also look for areas that are out of line with the overall quality of your home. And definitely remove the "ew!" factor whenever possible if something is garish, dumpy, or impossible to clean.

If you watch your costs and have good taste, careful improvements and repairs should more than pay you back when you sell your home.

Higher-return upgrades
Consider these home improvements before you put your home on the market:

Must-do home repairs
Certain home repairs are not optional, however. If neglected, these repairs may even be required by the home inspector -- after you negotiate a price:

Your home may be your largest investment. Make sure you know which remodeling projects won't pay you back when you sell, which strategic home improvements give you the best return or help move your home faster, and the home repairs you must make to close the deal.

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