5 Worst Home Improvement Choices of 2012

Home improvements for increasing property value whether as part of a professional career rehabbing properties or for your own residence are often misunderstood. Some can do wonders for creating profits and helping homes to sell faster and for top dollar, while others end up costing homeowners and real estate investors a ton of money.

So what are some of the worst home improvement moves being made this year?

1. Screened Enclosures

Replacing broken screens is one thing and can help curb appeal but building or rebuilding screened enclosures from the ground up isn’t cheap and is unlikely to add anything to the bottom line of your property value. This is especially true when placing a screened enclosure on an outdated home which would probably be torn down by the next round of buyers anyway.

2. Swimming Pools

Swimming pools are neither cheap nor fast to put in. Yes, they can add significant sums to property value but they can also lengthen the selling process, increasing holding costs and make the home unappealing during construction. If every other home in the neighborhood has on, that is one thing, however today many home buyers don’t want the added cost a pool brings.

3. Additions

Garage, bathroom and bedroom additions have been repeatedly listed as some of the worst home improvement choices when it comes to ROI. In fact it seems they rarely return half of what is invested. Compare this with the return, speed and simplicity of adding a deck or a steel entry door which is said to return an average of 129% of the money spent. Of course there are always exceptions.

4. Home Office Remodels

This is a slightly perplexing one on the list when you consider the huge trend in working from home today. However, it could be that some homeowners are spending too much remodeling offices and restricting variety in use, where new buyers may want to have the flexibility in re-structuring these rooms for their own maximum productivity.

5. Poor Color Choices

It has been said again and again that anyone redecorating or making home improvements for resale purposes should stick to a neutral palate for maximizing appeal, yet some still insist on breaking out the bright pink paint or hire painters who have trouble differentiating between peach, salmon and off-white.