Measure once, cut twice

Before spending thousands of dollars on renovations, it’s a good idea to find out whether you’ll recover the cost when you sell your home. Start by consulting a knowledgeable Royal Pacific Realty Group REALTOR® to determine the types of renovations most likely to offer the best return on your investment.

We suggest following these guidelines:

  1. Don’t “out-renovate” for your neighbourhood. Home prices are driven by location. If you live in a moderately priced neighbourhood and renovate your home with a luxurious gourmet kitchen, you might not be able to recover your costs. Compare your home to others in your neighbourhood, and don’t renovate far beyond the area standard.
  2. Stick to classic styles and avoid trendy renovations. In the 1980s mirrored walls, chrome track lighting and pastel colours were popular – an interior that is now dated. For resale value, choose timeless interior finishings such as neutral carpets or hardwood floors, classic wood cabinetry, and white or stainless steel appliances.
  3. Investigate zoning bylaws and permit requirements. For major renovations such as adding a deck or garage, or converting a basement to an in-law suite, you will need a building permit from your municipal city hall. Some types of renovations may be restricted depending on the zoning for your property. Renovations completed without proper permits can cause serious problems when it comes time to sell your home.
  4. Get the job done right. The quality of the renovation work directly affects resale value. Buyers are increasingly knowledgeable and will look closely at workmanship and the quality of materials, in addition to having a licensed home inspector examine the home from top to bottom. Unless you’re skilled and certified, don’t attempt major projects such as upgrading plumbing and electrical systems.
  5. Do your homework. Before starting a renovation project, carefully investigate material costs and product options, suppliers and professional contractors. Check references for all contractors and get all agreements in writing. Your best resource for referrals is often your knowledgeable Realtor.

For information

Home tips: www.hometips.com

Greater Vancouver Homebuilders’ Renovation Council: www.chbabc.org