If you want your home’s value to appreciate over time, it’s important to be aware of how the markets work and what factors are within your control.
Many elements combine to determine market value. Some are positive, some negative, some within your power to change, others at the mercy of fixed or unalterable circumstances.
Location, Location, Location
For better or worse, location has always had the biggest impact on the value of a home. There are many factors at work, but here are some of the most prominent influences that determine a good vs a poor location:
- Commercial / Industrial areas
- Large or poorly maintained apartment buildings
- Large hydro towers and/or water treatment plants
- Fronting on busy streets, backing onto highways
- Known high drug-use and crime areas
- Known flood area
- Unsightly views
- Proximity to parks
- Proximity to schools, especially highly rated ones
- Lower neighbourhood crime statistics
- Quiet neighbourhoods
- Pleasant views (water, escarpment, fields)
- Proximity to desirable amenities
- Tree-lined streets
- Natural gas service lines (country properties)
There are other things that could be added to each list, and a realtor who knows the neighbourhood will have valuable insights into local circumstances and nuances that may influence future value and your current buying decision.
* A note about location. You’re better to have the smallest home in an area of larger homes and not the biggest home in an area of small homes. Neighbourhoods of small homes typically have lower price points than areas of large homes. For the best (financial) value, the rule of thumb is to buy “the shack next to the mansion.”
Condition of the property.
It’s no surprise that homes in excellent condition are worth more than homes that need extensive repairs. Most buyers would rather move in and enjoy the home than spend time and energy fixing it. Here are a list of renovations that make the biggest difference in resale value. If a home you’re considering has had these items recently updated, you’ll be in good shape.
- Landscaping & Curb Appeal
- Furnace and A/C
- Cleanliness, Neatness and Quality of Workmanship
Renovations that can add value at a relatively low cost are:
- Fresh Paint
- New floors
- New lighting
- Thorough deep cleaning
For a full list of ways to improve the value of a home, read: