It's not uncommon to spend money on home renovations. And the right ones could help you command more money for your home when the time comes to sell it.
But some so-called home improvements could end up backfiring on you big time from a resale perspective. Here are a few mistakes that could end up costing you money by decreasing your home's value rather than boosting it.
1. Too much personalization
Maybe you're the artsy type who loves tiled walls and lots of built-in decor. But while that might suit your taste, it may not suit the taste of the average buyer.
That's why it's important not to personalize your home too much. This isn't to say that every wall needs to be beige. But before you sink money into a bright-orange kitchen backsplash or custom patterned tiles for your foyer, think about whether that decision might end up costing you money down the line.
2. Converting a garage to living space
You'd think that turning a garage into a spare bedroom, den, or office would add value to your home. But depending on where you live, the opposite might happen.
If you live someplace with a cold climate, not having a garage could be something that turns buyers off from buying your home. And also, if your home doesn't have a lot of storage space outside your garage, repurposing that space could come back to bite you.
Before you spend money turning your garage into living space, think about the drawbacks. There may be another way to add usable square footage to your home, like putting on a small addition (which, granted, will cost a lot of money, but it may add resale value to your home rather than take some away).
3. Installing bright-colored siding
You might think that installing bright green siding is a great way to help your home stand out. Well, it will stand out, all right -- but perhaps not in the way you want it to.
The reality is that most buyers prefer neutral exteriors, and if you choose siding that's overly bright, it could turn buyers away and detract from your home's value. And so before you make that investment, consider adding touches of color in a more subtle way. For example, you can plant flowers that add brightness to your exterior. And that way, if a future buyer doesn't like them, they can always replant.
Do your research before you invest
If you're renovating your home for your own personal enjoyment only, go ahead and put in those funky kitchen tiles or move forward with that bright purple fence. But if you're looking at your home as more of a real estate investment and you want to get the most resale value out of it, be careful with the work you do to it.
In fact, a good bet is to consult a real estate agent before making renovations to see what the impact is likely to be. Sometimes, it takes an outside person to make you realize that what you think is a smart choice is more likely than not to backfire.