One of the biggest questions clients have when considering remodeling their kitchen is “What is the return on my investment?” In other words, if selling the home within the next few years is a possibility, is it worth redoing the kitchen and if I do, will it increase the value of the house once I am prepared to sell. This question can be viewed in several different ways: from a cabinet salesperson’s point of view “absolutely- you should gut the kitchen and add a new one!”; from an everyday person’s point of view- it is a tough question. I have come to a conclusion that it depends on a few variables, including the type of remodel, the nature of the housing market at the time you are considering selling and the cost of the project.
If you live in a residential area that has very dated kitchens and you are considering selling in the near future redoing the kitchen has a few advantages:
1. You will get to enjoy the kitchen for the time that you are there.
2. Your house will stand out from the other, more dated homes on the market and WILL sell!
If you put a significant amount of money into the kitchen, will that be reflected in the final number you get for your house sale? Maybe and maybe not. Homeowners need to be careful that they are not pricing themselves out of the market with their renovation projects. For instance, if houses in the neighborhood are selling for $300,000 and you decide to invest $100,000 in kitchen renovations to create your perfect “dream kitchen” you will likely not recoup that investment in a short period of time because you have significantly priced yourself out of the market. You will however, get to enjoy your “dream kitchen” while you are living, cooking and entertaining in your kitchen. Enjoying a space in your home is nearly as important as the return on the financial investment.
A kitchen remodel need not cost a hundred thousand dollars to lure in buyers, if that is the intention of the remodel. A few updates, such as new countertops, paint or a cabinet “face-lift” can have a significant (possibility as much as 80%) return on investment.
I have spoke to a few local realtors about this topic and they were torn about whether it was “worth it” to remodel a kitchen for the purpose of selling the home. They did agree that it would “it will definitely make the house sell as opposed to not selling if the kitchen is dated.”
The disadvantages to remodeling the kitchen –
1. I am putting a lot of money into a place that I am considering selling and cannot enjoy.
2. What if the potential buyer loves the house but hates my taste in kitchens and doesn’t buy the house because of the kitchen?
Yes, you will be investing money into a home that you won’t live in for very long, but you will enjoy the new kitchen for awhile. Remodeling the kitchen will attract many homebuyers into your home, the right buyer will eventually come through and will love your taste in kitchens.
Final thoughts: why not live in a kitchen that you love at least for a little while before you sell and maybe take ideas from this kitchen remodel and figure out what you do and don’t want in your next home purchase, remodel or custom build.