Renovations That Add Value: Updating Your Kitchen

Wondering how to sell my house?

Well, one of the best things you can do to make your listing more valuable—and more appealing—is to do some strategic home renovation work.

Be careful, though, because not all home renovations are helpful. Some really add value, but others are just a waste of your time and resources; in fact, some home renovations can actually make your property value go down!

To help you navigate these tricky considerations, we’re launching a new blog series, with a simple title: Renovations That Add Value. In the first edition, we’re going to look to the kitchen, which affords you plenty of prime opportunities for sprucing things up (and ultimately getting your house sold).

Before we get to the kitchen, though, remember that you’re always encouraged to download your free home seller’s report from, where you’ll get individualized tips for selling your home. Request your report today!

Kitchen Renovations That Add Value

Real estate agents have long contended that, when it comes to decorating, staging, and renovating, the kitchen is the area where your efforts have the greatest impact. That’s because, in most households, the kitchen is the center of family life—and thus, the area that can either be a deal-breaker or a deal-maker for potential buyers.

But what are some specific tips for renovating your kitchen and getting your home sold? Here’s our advice.

You don’t have to go wild!

One of the most common misconceptions about kitchen remodeling is that bigger is always better—and that the best way to renovate your kitchen is essentially to overhaul it from top to bottom.

In some cases, if your kitchen is really old and in miserable shape, then yes, you may need to start from scratch.

For the vast majority of homeowners, though, we’d actually recommend a more modest kitchen renovation. Studies have shown repeatedly that minor kitchen remodels actually recoup their investment more than major ones do.

Think in terms of traffic flow.

A lot of kitchen renovations center on increased storage space. Specifically, many homeowners want to add cabinetry and/or a kitchen island so they’ll have more space for appliances and dishware.

Sometimes this makes sense, but remember that, for potential buyers, spaciousness and traffic flow are going to be key considerations. Simply put, nobody wants to buy a kitchen where they’ll feel cramped or crowded, or like they’re tripping over their own family members.

One suggestion: Get some cardboard boxes and make a full-size model of your proposed kitchen island and see how it feels for a few days before you invest real money.

Put yourself in the buyer’s position.

As you think about the kitchen renovation projects that are going to add real value, put yourself in the buyer’s position, and ask what would be attractive to you.

For example, updating your countertops and your faucets, as well as installing an elegant new backsplash…these are the things that immediately grab attention, and help the kitchen feel more modern and chicer.

When it comes to value-adding, minor kitchen remodels, these are often the kinds of updates that make the most sense.

Don’t forget about the staging.

A lot of our top tips for selling your home involve staging—that is, arranging your home in a way that minimizes clutter and maximizes functional space.

So we’ll say again: Make sure you take the time to stage your kitchen before you list. Yes, renovation can be meaningful. But removing excess items from your countertops, showing off all the functional surface areas available, is just as critical.

It’s okay to leave out a heavy appliance or two, like your blender, and maybe a vase with some fresh flowers…but generally, you want to keep visible kitchen stuff minimal.

Renovate with Care

The bottom line: There are some fairly minor things you can do to make your kitchen more appealing—and your home more valuable overall.

In our next post, we’ll switch gears to the bathroom, and show how you can overhaul it in a way that maximizes value.

In the meantime, don’t forget your report. If you’re wondering how to sell my house, this report will steer you in the right direction. Get yours right away!