Real Estate News About Woodbridge, Mount Vernon, and Lorton Virginia: September 2013

Which Improvements Should You Make To Your Home In Woodbridge

Find Out Which Improvements Should You Make To Your Home In Woodbridge

Learn Which Improvements Should You Make FIRST In Your Home

Not All Improvements Add Value To Your House

You have a home in Woodbridge VA, and you want to upgrade or update your house.

Where do you start?  Begin with the end in mind.

Here are a few observations I have noticed over 23 years of selling houses in Woodbridge.

1. Take care of REPAIRS before you begin UPDATES and RENOVATIONS.  It makes no sense to start a new project when you have small leaks, faulty light switches, worn-out appliances, loose boards on the deck, or other items in need of repair. 

Man cave with walk in humidor

2. Decide who will do the work; a contractor or you and your buddies with a case of beer.  If you are planning to do the work yourself, make sure you have detailed plans that meet county code requirements.  For example, if you are building a deck, or expanding/adding a room, get detailed plans drawn.

home addition

3. Find out if your improvement requires a county building permit.  I cannot recall how many "finished" basements I've seen that were finished without a building permit.  There are two ways I can tell if the work was done without permits; First, there will be too few electrical outlets; Second, I can check the county tax record, and if the basement was finished without permits, the finished basement will not show in the tax records.

If you finished interiror space, or added interior space without building permits, your house will not be approved by the appraiser when you sell that house.  You'll have to obtain a permit, and an occupancy permit.

4. Take your budget for your project and add 50% to the cost for unforseen extra costs.  If you are building a deck and you budgeted $4,000 for the job, have $6,000 available for the job.  I have renovated three houses, and in each case, the actual finished cost came in at 150% of the estimate.  Thankfully, I planned for the extra expense.

5. Run your plans by your family REALTOR to make sure you are not OVER-IMPROVING your house for the neighborhood.  Your family REALTOR can tell you which projects pay for themselves, and which will not reward you with a return on your investment when you sell your house.

home improvement

For example, painting the house inside and out will typically get you 150% of investment when you sell.  A pool adds NO value to your huse, and could reduce the value of your house.  Not everyone wants to deal with the hassle of maintaining a pool.  Fresh carpet or wood flooring will give you a 125% return on investment.  An additional room may return 50% - 70% of the cost.

Your family REALTOR is your best resource when you make improvements.

If you don't have a family REALTOR, or your REALTOR is out of the business, send me a text or give me a call at 703-677-1120.

When you call or text me at 703-677-1120, tell me where you live, and what you plan to do to your house.  I'll do my best to give you some tips on home renovations.

Erick BlackwelderCall or text Erick Blackwelder right now for help finding a home, or help selling your house.  

Don't worry... Erick doesn't bite, and you won't get a sales pitch.  Text or call Erick now at 703-677-1120 for a FREE consultation.

CLICK HERE NOW to search the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) for homes for sale in and around Woodbridge, Lorton, and Mount Vernon.

Exit Realty Associates
8998C Lorton Station Blvd
Lorton, VA  22079
Equal Housing Opportunity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Hey Erick, tell me more about...."

Click the link above to email a question to me or call me now at 703-677-1120.  

 

 

Equal Housing opportunity.

Comment balloon 0 commentsErick Blackwelder • September 27 2013 08:46AM
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