Home improvement projects can have a far-reaching benefit for individual homeowners and for the economy at large. Remodeling and renovation projects can have a positive impact on the value of a house, which can help the homeowner earn a return on their investment when it’s time to sell the home. With an eye toward outdoor improvements, many projects can enhance curb appeal. Building gazebos, pergolas, and sheds can make outdoor areas more pleasing to the eye, and they can enhance a potential buyer’s enjoyment of these outdoor spaces. Before embarking on an outdoor project, the savvy homeowner should calculate the cost carefully to ensure that the final result will be worth the investment.
The way a house looks from the outside, known as curb appeal, can have a direct impact on the interest level of potential buyers. Outdoor living areas are popular with many families, so creating these spaces can provide immediate enjoyment for a homeowner as well as features that will appeal to potential buyers in the future. Landscaping around the foundation of a house and garage provides color and interest in a yard as well. Plants, shrubs, and trees are examples of living landscaping that enhance a home’s outdoor appearance.
Decks and patios are some of the most common types of outdoor living areas. Newer options include outdoor kitchens with features like built-in grills, smokers, refrigerators, and counter areas. A gazebo is another option for a covered outdoor seating area, which many people find appealing. Sometimes a pergola might connect with a gazebo, or it could be a freestanding structure near a garden. A pergola has a flat roof and two sides, and it might serve as an archway or a garden structure with vines and climbing plants growing on connected lattice panels. Sheds can serve a multitude of purposes in a yard, making them attractive additions to a property. Homeowners can store equipment and materials in a shed, freeing up space in a garage. In some cases, a shed could even become a home office, a workshop, or a playroom for the kids.
When approaching a home improvement project with the specific goal of increasing resale value, choosing the right project is important. Some projects will achieve this goal more readily than others. For example, adding a deck to a backyard could come with a return on investment of as much as 87 percent after finishing the project. Adding a gazebo or pergola to one corner of a deck or patio is also a popular idea with many homeowners. The benefit one of these structures is the roof overhead, which provides shade and protection from the rain. Having a spot for a barbecue and outdoor dining helps make a comfortable outdoor living area. Some people even install a built-in fireplace or an outdoor heater in a gazebo to increase enjoyment and make these areas comfortable in the spring and the autumn.
One key to ensuring that a home improvement project increases home value is to choose the project wisely. For best results, the style and design of the outdoor features should be attractive to the general population. While you may like unusual colors or shapes, buyers are more likely to appreciate more neutral, mainstream designs. Versatility is another positive feature of these outdoor features. Open-ended designs that would enable future homeowners to expand on outdoor living spaces are a smart idea.
The cost and effort that need to go into the project itself are other considerations when determining whether a project will be worthwhile. Anytime a homeowner can perform the home improvement work without hiring a professional, the sweat equity can translate to a higher return on investment. When hiring a contractor, the homeowner must research companies carefully to choose a reputable company with competitive pricing. Choosing a company with high prices or with a poor reputation for finishing quality work will diminish the positive results of the project.
Learn more about increasing your home’s resale value with projects such as building gazebos, pergolas, and sheds by visiting these resources:
- Home Improvement Contracting: Nail Everything Down Before You Start
- The Remodeling Conundrum: When the Order Matters (PDF)
- Maximum-Value Outdoor Structure Projects: Shed
- Top 10 Home Improvement Projects (PDF)
- Cost vs. Value: Remodeling Pays Off Big-Time (PDF)
- Four Home Improvement Projects With High Long-Term Return (PDF)
- Home Improvement: Minor Improvements, Major Impacts (PDF)
- Brokers Tell All: 10 Ways to Boost House Value
- A Shed Could Add Value to Your Property
- Outdoor Expansions (PDF)