How to Increase Home Value

November 11, 2013

Ten years ago you purchased your dream home in the Houston area, but for one reason or another, it is time to move on. In this depressed economy, your home value is not what it once was. After completing the obvious touch-ups and speaking with various real estate agents, you realize that your house will not sell for anything remotely close to what it once was worth.

It doesn’t make sense. You have brand new windows and siding, recently updated your kitchen, and have beautiful, state-of-the-art bathrooms. What else can you possibly do? Well, there are a few options, but one of the most important is not located within the (current) walls of your home.

It’s All About The Buyer

First off, understand what homebuyers are looking for. Sure, it is great to have all the new bells and whistles. If your realtor has the opportunity to list off details about your brand new countertops, it definitely won’t hurt the price of your home. But, focus on how you make a potential buyer feel. If a buyer can picture themselves living in your house, with their own stuff, they are much more likely to make a purchase.

The Best Ways to Increase Home Resale Value

There are three main ways to jump start this image in the buyer’s mind. The first is to remove clutter. Simplicity is key when selling a home, remove any unnecessary belongings you have from rooms for a more open feel. Also be sure to spruce up typically overlooked areas, such as the garage. Make this space seem more functional by cleaning the floor for a more visually aesthetic look.

While these two improvements are helpful, the best way to help Houston buyers envision their future in the home is through outdoor living. Outdoor living upgrades help create a  “getaway destination,” feel for your home, and you won’t need to leave your property to enjoy it. Options include patio covers, pergolas, and sunrooms. So, which one is the best? It depends.


Instillation of a pergola or other outdoor living area can greatly improve home value.


If you have the time, money, and space, sunrooms are a fantastic investment. Not only do they serve as a middle-ground between remaining in the comfort of your home and soaking up sunlight, but they also add square-footage to the home. This could make a huge difference in the price of a home, especially if your house does not already boast a large amount of square-footage.

There are two options when it comes to sunrooms, 3-season and 4-season. While 4-season sunrooms are connected to the central heating, they come with a much higher price tag. Although this may seem like the best way to increase home value, 3-season sunrooms are a much better fit for the Houston area. A little further north, we would shudder at the idea of spending time in an unheated sunroom in the dead of winter. But, in the warm Houston climate, these so-called 3-season sunrooms can really be used all year long.


Sunrooms give an indoor room an outdoor feel.

Patio Covers and Pergolas

If adding on an extra room to your home does not quite fit the budget, consider a patio cover or pergola. The main difference between these two options is the amount of sunlight allowed in. While patio covers will create a completely shaded area, the open lattice beams of a pergola will allow a few rays to sneak through. In addition, the cost of installing a pergola will generally be much lower. If you would like more information on how to choose the right addition for you, see the “5 Outdoor Living Updates That Are Better Than Vacation” blog.

Cedar Patio Cover with Posts

Patio covers provide shaded area and a more visually aesthetic environment.

Regardless of your choice, adding an outdoor living component will provide more than just seating. Potential buyers will have the opportunity to see their family under the patio cover on a beautiful spring day. They will be able to envision curling up under a blanket in their 3-season sunroom during the winter months. Allowing customers to see themselves in their future home will make them far more willing to meet your desired price, and the best way to achieve this is through outdoor living upgrades.