12 Mar Smart Upgrades for Underwater Homes
Just because you have negative equity in your home doesn’t mean your hands are tied with regard to making it a home that works for you. In fact, there are a variety of upgrades that make a lot of sense for homeowners in this situation. If you were hoping to move-up to a larger home, but find yourself in a situation where you need to stay put for the time being, consider these upgrades that make sense for homeowners who are upside down.
- Make Cosmetic Changes—Upping your home’s curb appeal is a smart move even if you owe more than your home is worth. Painting shutters, adding new hardware like a mailbox or house numbers, and concentrating on your landscaping will boost your home’s value, and could help you refinance. Plus, if you do decide to you’re your home down the line, curb appeal will lure prospective buyers. Do it yourself to keep costs down.
- Wayward Expansion—As your family grows, so too does the need for more space. Capitalize on your home’s footprint by converting an unused garage or basement into a rental or in-law-type unit. These can be amazing investments to help you bring in additional income.
- Go Green—Creating a home that is more energy-efficient means more money in your pocket. You can shave lots of money off of your monthly bills, and also improve your own well-being. Consider solar panels to eliminate your electric bill entirely. If you can’t afford to purchase them, leasing may be an option. Tank-less water heaters are another simple fix that cut energy costs dramatically. Plus, often, green home improvements might qualify you for tax credits.
- Creating Larger Spaces—Are you plagued with a home that has tiny rooms that drive you crazy? For resale, the rule typically says that more bedrooms equal more money. However, if you have two tiny, unusable spaces, you may be better off knocking down a wall and creating a larger space, especially if you are planning to stay put for the foreseeable future. Consult with a contractor to see if your home can support such a change.
- Build-In—Creating storage space will not only make your life more organized and streamlined, but it’s also one of the first things home buyers look for when house hunting. Built-in work and storage spaces in your office, garage, craft rooms, and kitchen are useful and can give you the feel of a highly customized luxury home. The possibilities are endless, so look around your home and see where you can build-in.