Best Home Improvements to Increase Value with a HELOC

Make the Most of Time at Home this Fall

COVID-19 has kept most of us at home more than we ever expected in recent months. We’ve read books, cleaned out the garage, binge watched every series our friends recommended, and learned how to work, learn, play games and socialize online. With the pandemic’s effects on our lives continuing, many people will still find themselves spending a lot of time at home this fall. If you want to benefit from this situation, however, cooler weather and more time at home can make this a perfect time to check off a few home improvements.

The Importance of Home Improvement

Home improvements have many benefits. They can:

  • Enable homeowners to use their living space more efficiently and enjoy it more thoroughly.
  • Provide a welcoming environment for guests when traveling and socializing become common again.
  • Potentially reduce the time it takes to sell a home or increase its value.

Repairs and renovations can be especially important for homeowners who are considering selling now or in the near future. Fixing up a home can make it more attractive to prospective buyers, causing it to sell more quickly and command a higher sales price.

According to, the typical US home for sale stayed on the market for 80 days in February 2020, a relatively long period compared to recent years. But the DOM or days on the market is significantly higher in some locations. In New York state, the average days on the market was 683 days. Since the condition and age of a home can determine how long the property stays on the market, it is important in this market for homeowners to put their home’s best foot forward. Even one item in obvious need of repair or updating can make buyers believe the entire home needs work, lowering their offering price or scaring them away altogether.

In any market, of course, people want to get the most out of their home when they sell. A higher sales price can mean more money to put into a better new home or to fund major expenses such as retirement or travel. An annual report from Remodeling Magazine puts the overall remodeling cost-to-value ratio for 2020 at 63.7%, but some projects yield much better returns in resale value than others.

Best Home Improvements to Increase Market Value

The home improvements that create the most value are predominantly exterior and focused on increasing the curb appeal of the home. Updating an old or boring exterior can make a major difference in buyers’ perceptions. Most buyers want a house they can feel proud of immediately, even if it needs some interior work.

On the interior, kitchens and baths are important areas that tend to gain the most value from moderate remodeling. (Expensive, upscale remodeling tends to earn a lower return on investment.) Most buyers want upgraded kitchens and bathrooms without having to pay a lot of money to get them right after facing the costs of buying a house.

Reasonable kitchen improvements can include installing energy-efficient modern appliances, painting cabinets and installing new granite or quartz countertops. Moderate bathroom improvements can include updated tile, fixtures, counters and lighting.

Here are some valuable improvements with their estimated costs and potential return on investment.

  1. Garage Door Replacement
    • Expected cost: $3500-$3800
    • ROI: 95-98%
  2. Manufactured Stone Veneer on Exterior
    • Expected cost: $8900-$9500
    • ROI: 95-97%
  3. Deck Addition
    • Expected cost: $14,000-$20,000
    • ROI: 70-80%
  4. Siding Replacement
    • Expected cost: $15,000-$17,500
    • ROI: 75-77%
  5. Window Replacement
    • Expected cost: $16,000-$20,000
    • ROI: 70-75%
  6. Moderate Kitchen Remodel
    • Expected cost: $20,000-$25,000
    • ROI: 78-81%
  7. Moderate Bathroom Remodel
    • Expected cost: $20,000-$25,000
    • ROI: 60-70%

When homeowners are considering doing multiple home improvements to increase their home value, they should do needed repairs first. Then they might prioritize external projects with the best potential returns on investment. However, kitchen and bathroom remodeling often offers greater quality-of-life benefits for homeowners who plan to stay in their homes for a while, so also take this into account when you are prioritizing your own improvements.

Get a HELOC for Home Improvements through Bethpage

Paying for home improvements can be costly. One way to finance your projects can be through a home equity line of credit (HELOC). This type of loan is based on the equity you have in your home. HELOCs are great for home improvement projects as they are more flexible and typically have a lower interest rate. No matter which projects your home needs, Bethpage is here to provide great HELOC rates and guidance throughout the application process.

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