Top 5 Mistakes that Decrease the Value of your Home

Not everything you do to your home will increase its value. Home additions, skipping out on maintenance, or even painting the walls an unpopular color can make your home’s value tank. Clearly, no house is going to be perfect and have a magic value that continually increases regardless of anything you do in your home. If that were true, I wouldn’t even be writing this article right now.

It’s important to weigh your wins against your losses and see what improvements you can make in your home to get the value up. Once you understand what is adding or subtracting value from your home, you can move forward confidently knowing you will make the best decisions.

5 Mistakes that Decrease the Value of your Home:

1) Installing a Pool:

You have always wanted a swimming pool, your kids have always wanted a swimming pool, and it is the perfect addition for your family. Unfortunately, not everyone feels that way. Most buyers want to steer clear of pools due to the high cost of maintaining them. The yearly maintenance and equipment required to keep a pool up and running EVERY season is a huge deterrent for buyers. Don’t be surprised if you don’t see the return on investment that you were expecting.

2) Neglecting your Hot Water Heater:

Do you still have the hot water heater that’s original to your home? That’s a HUGE mistake. Older heaters don’t run as efficiently as new heaters and can increase your power bills. An unmaintained water heater is a huge warning sign for buyers and that will be reflected in lost value for your home.
As a homebuyer, you should be very vigilant to keep all of the key devices in your home in good working order.

3) Destroying Existing Value:

Anything that your home had when you bought it is existing value. One of the biggest mistakes a buyer can make is to start tearing down walls and getting rid of the original value of the home. It might seem like a great idea to take down a wall in between two bedrooms to make one larger room- but you couldn’t be MORE wrong. A three bedroom home, regardless of the size of the rooms will always have more value than a two bedroom home. If you are looking to undertake any major renovations in your home, you should look to be making additions that add living space instead. More living space equals more value!

4) Not Cleaning Gutters:

Psht, who needs to clean their gutters right? It’s not a big deal… WRONG. Gutters that are full of leaves and guck can overflow and do costly damage to your home! Overflow from gutters can pool around your home and soak into the foundation. This excess of moisture can eventually cause your foundation to crack. Not only will a house with a cracked foundation never sell, it can destroy the integrity of your home. Left unfixed, the whole house could come tumbling down! Don’t let this happen to you, keep your gutters nice and clean!

5) Over Improvement:

Even if you aren’t planning on moving any time soon, you should always think about the comparable properties on your block. When you are planning a renovation, you don’t want to out-renovate the block. If you over do it, you will never see a return on investment for those projects because a home will never be priced out of its neighborhood. So all that money you spent, will just be lost. Keep every upgrade you do in your house within the price range of the neighborhood.

So before you start tearing up your house, make sure the renos you want to do will actually benefit your home’s value. Lost value isn’t easy to get back, once it’s gone!

Photo via:

4 thoughts on “Top 5 Mistakes that Decrease the Value of your Home

  1. Pingback: Why You’re Having Trouble Selling Your Home | ZippyLife Blog

  2. Sally Hasselbrack

    Thank you for the advice about not pouring too much money into the home or lot so that it exceeds the local neighborhood. I appreciate that’ gem of wisdom’, though I knew it but I keep wanting to fix up the inside to make it more aesthetic to me and my husband.

  3. Lynn Gardner

    I would say this to be so – especially “over improvement”. I ask my sellers to consider the personal taste and lifestyle items to be like buying a new wardrobe for themselves. It is not necessarily going to add value to the buyers perceived value. There is a 50/50 chance they will take it out anyway and consider that cost in their offer. So my mantra is minimal – Less is Best – Keep it Simple.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *