Real Estate Blog

    Sep
    19

    When purchasing a home, you'll probably have a list of must-do projects in mind. It's pretty difficult to find a home that fits your style and taste perfectly. When making updates to your home, however it's important to keep the home's long term equity in mind. You don't want to spend your life savings on projects that don't have an impact on your home's ROI, and simply place it at a price tag too high for the neighborhood. One of the easiest ways to keep the costs of projects down are by taking matters into your own hands.

    These are 9 DIY home projects that will help build equity:

    1. Paint Walls

    The first and most straightforward DIY home project is painting. There are a variety of tools available for DIY painting including edging tools, and one-coat paint that includes primer that make painting your own home easier than ever before. By putting in some sweat equity, you can completely transform your home at a pretty low cost. To build equity, make sure the paint colors you choose are neutral to appeal to the largest amount of homebuyers.

    2. Install or Paint White Trim

    Your walls aren’t the only area of your home that can completely transform with a coat of paint, so can trim. Although this can be a tedious DIY home project, it’s one that can modernize and brighten your home making it easier to sell. By painting the existing trim in your home white, you can compliment the bright neutral paint colors you’ve painted throughout the spaces in your home. If your home doesn’t have trim, adding trim can also build equity. Adding trim and other decorative trim work, like DIY wainscoting, can make your home appear a lot more high end on a budget.

    3. Resurface Countertops

    A complete kitchen remodel isn’t always in the cards for a homeowners budget. Even if it’s an affordable option for you, it might not always make sense in terms of building equity. The worst thing you can do to your home is make it worth far more than the comparable homes in your surrounding neighborhood. One of the DIY home projects that can completely transform your kitchen however, aside from paint on the walls and cabinets, is resurfacing countertops. There are a ton of different ways that you can resurface your countertops by yourself. You could follow a plan for how to build butcher block countertops, or update your existing laminate countertops with new laminate, countertop paint or heavy duty contact paper coverings that are on the market today.

    4. Modernize Fireplace

    Your fireplace is the focal point of your living room and is a major selling point for home buyers. Old styles, like red toned brick and oak mantles are found in many homes but don’t necessarily appeal to today’s homebuyers. Another one of the most rewarding DIY home projects you can complete is modernizing your fireplace. Start by using paint to whitewash or refinish brick. You can even completely change the style if it makes sense with your home decor by using stucco and other materials. Once resurfaced, modernize the mantle by creating an updated wood stained piece that can fit directly over the existing mantel or simply using paint. This DIY home project, along with the corresponding paint on the walls can completely transform the look of your living room without the large price tag.

    5. Refinish or Replace Floors

    Floors complete a home by making cohesive spaces. Updating floors can have a huge impact on building equity. Especially if you save money by making it one of the DIY home projects that you work on. One option for transforming your floors, especially if they’re wood, is to resurface them. You can rent a floor sander and take off the existing finish completely to prep them for a new stain throughout your home. If you have carpet or tile in your home, you can also make them look brand new using a carpet shampooer or grout cleaner. If your floors are beyond repair, replacing your floors is fairly simple with the products that currently exist. By opting for a laminate wood, for example, you can find products that physically snap togethermaking it a doable DIY home project.

    6. Build a Deck

    Building equity isn’t only reserved for the inside of your home, sprucing up your outdoor space can make a huge impact as well. There are plenty of deck plans that you can find or purchase to build your own deck or porch. Although this obviously requires a set of power tools and knowledge about how they work. This is a DIY home project that will take some time, but will be well worth the return, especially by saving money on labor costs.

    7. Upgrade your Exterior Doors

    Exterior doors can not only tie together the look of your home, but also help immensely with your home’s efficiency. Updating the major exterior doors is a DIY home project that you can do on your own by taking proper measurements and purchasing a new door that fits in the same space. Opting for a modern door with a bright paint color can enhance your curb appeal making your home more desirable for homebuyers.

    8. Update Light Fixtures

    Another one of the simplest DIY home updates you can do is to update all of the light fixtures in your home. Opting for modern chandeliers for dining rooms, pendant lights in the kitchen and new updated hallway light fixtures can brighten and modernize your home in a cohesive way. Most light fixtures can easily be swapped out by following the instructions provided in the new light fixture and connecting the existing wires. New light fixtures are the focal point of each room, and can be the perfect finishing touch for a homebuyer.

    9. Waterproof Basement

    Finally, updating your basement is another DIY home project you can take on. One of the biggest fears of homebuyers is purchasing a home that has a wet basement. If you have an unfinished basement, you can make it more appealing by using waterproofing materials, like heavy duty waterproofing paint to finish off surfaces that may be susceptible to moisture. For example, covering concrete floors with waterproofing paint can make the space feel much more clean and can be a major selling feature for homebuyers.


    Overall, these 9 DIY home projects take a range of time and sweat equity, but are well worth it in the end. They’ll ensure that your home looks great and is more efficient without breaking your budget. This will ultimately help you save money, giving you even more return on your investment. Sometimes, taking matters into your own hands through DIY projects can have a large return in the long term. What other DIY home projects have added equity in your home? Let us know in the comments!

    Free Download: Home Selling Preparation Checklist

    The complete list of inside & outside updates for your home before you sell.

    Download the Checklist »
      • Home Finder Pro

        Moving to or within Greater Lansing? Use our guide to find the perfect neighborhood for you! Download the Guide ›