Paul Eslick from property educators Reno Kings shares his tips on maximising your home value for minimum outlay.
Home-owners can add as much as $100,000 in value to some properties by spending just $10,000 – provided they learn how to do the work themselves, he says. (As a general rule of thumb, however, for every dollar he spends, he aims for about a $5 return.)
He adds that with enough care and an effort, it can be possible to do all the following steps for just $10,000.
Paint the outside
“Without a shadow of a doubt, the best bang for buck is with paint. I’ve never met a person who can’t paint and the results are fantastic. We like to start at the top and work down to the bottom. Painting from the outside gives it a lift. We love to increase the street appeal, as it gives better value to the tenant who’s driving by, better value to the bank manager who knows where his money is going and, more importantly, better value for the valuer who is doing the restricted assessment – i.e. a drive-by.”
Install a fence
“It’s the frame around the Mona Lisa. The reason the fence would be good value is security for the tenant if they have children and for their pets. (In Australia, we’re one of the highest pet-owning countries in the world).”
Landscape your garden
“Try and find access off the kitchen to have an area for the indoor-outdoor look. Go and do a paving course for free with Bunnings. Put a paving section in if it’s close to the ground, or put in a small deck with a table that fits six people. Have an ABN number and go to the wholesale distributor and you cut out the middle man. Consider doing walkways with stone instead of concrete, because you can do it yourself.”
Make over your kitchen
“A quick way to add value to an old kitchen would be to buy laminate paint and paint the front of the doors and buy new handles. If the splashback is tiles, use tile paint and repaint the tiles at the back.
“Get a good quality, marine-grade stainless steel polish and polish the stainless steel sink.
“Buy single-flick mixers for the sink and install them.”
Spruce up your bathroom
“I’ve seen too many people wasting money throwing out pink baths and odd-coloured baths. Invest in Tub ‘n’ Tile and repaint the baths white.”
“Re-lift the existing tiles by using tile paint. You may paint a bathroom any colour providing it’s white. It’ll make it bigger, brighter and cleaner.
“Shower curtains and tenants do not mix. Pay the extra for a DIY laminated grass shower screen and install this instead.
“An old, daggy vanity can be replaced quite simply.”
Add an extra bedroom
“I’d look for a big, open space in an AVJennings home and put in a $1000 home wall and convert it to a two-bedroom house and add $50,000. You take an L-shaped room where the dining room used to be, put a wall where the window is and you add a room.”
Add window furnishings
“I like putting [in] straight venetian blinds for my window furnishings. The cheap plastic ones seem to break, so go up [to] the next level.”
Do it all yourself
“You have to be able to do all the work yourself.
“You can do courses, you can paint, you can do landscaping.
“Building a wall inside is very easy, though you may need help with plastering.”
This article first appeared in Property Observer.