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3 Small Tweaks That Boost Your Home’s Property Value Without Breaking the Bank


The real estate market is hot! Whether you’re selling or simply sprucing up, it’s easy to add thousands of dollars in property value to your home with these three cheap tweaks.

To Update Your look: Opt for ‘Pop’

For every $10 worth of paint, you gain $20 in home value, a recent study reveals. The hottest hues are black and white, reflecting the trendy Scandinavian farmhouse style. “Just concentrate on accents like white window trim and black shutters,” says Tomas Satas, of Windy City Home Buyer. “Small changes make a big difference.”

Another top spot: your front door. A study found that black doors add $6,000 in value because they look stately.

Also smart: You can easily add $20,000 of value by upgrading garage doors to wood, according to Clay Caro of Kingdom Doors, LLC. No need to get a new door: Find easy-to-use “wood look” gel paints in hardware stores.

To Enhance Your Yard: Sprinkle Mulch

The inexpensive landscaping trick that makes the biggest impact on curb appeal? Simply adding mulch to beds in the front yard, says home designer Maureen Stevens. “Fresh mulch instantly makes your landscaping look professional.” And flowers have the most impact when used to highlight focal points, such as on either side of your front door or window boxes. To enhance blooming displays, go for large pots (20 inches or bigger) and include three plants in each container, a trick florists use.

Also smart: Houses that fly the flag tend to be perceived as better maintained. For flags made in the USA, visit USVetsNetwork. org, where a portion of proceeds supports veterans.

To Add ‘Size’: Brighten Light

You can earn a 50 percent return on your investment by adding outdoor lighting, according to research. “A well-lit exterior makes buyers feel safe,” says Matt Bigach of Nexus Homebuyers.

To light your home like a pro, just line walkways with solar lanterns, then use solar spotlights to create “uplighting” between windows in the front, a trick that makes your home look larger. Stick to “warm white” or yellow bulbs, which look more homey than cooler white light.

Also smart: Paint fixtures black or bronze, both elegant colors that give the appearance of highend materials. “A lot of updated homes are using light fixtures in darker colors,” says RE/MAX Elite agent Madeline Balgavy.

This article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.

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