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Home improvements that add the most value

Posted on Friday, February 5, 2016 at 11:08:13 AM

Homeowners who take advantage of home improvement financing have a wide array of potential projects at their fingertips. But which ones will best improve a home and increase its value? According to Consumer Reports, these are the best home improvement projects: 

Kitchens have long been the main focus of homebuyers, and that isn't changing. In Consumer Reports' survey of millennial buyers, more than a third said a modern kitchen was their ideal home feature. Huge renovations aren't necessary. Small changes, like new appliances and countertops, can make a big difference. 

Open floor plans are also a great return on investment. Buyers want living space that can adapt to their wants and needs, and an open floor plan is the best way to do that. Features like flex rooms - which can be used for multiple purposes - and mother-in-law apartments add a whole lot of value to listings. 

Homes renovated and designed for older residents are proving very popular. The National Association of Home Builders' 55+ Housing Market Index improved in the fourth quarter of 2015, ticking up to 61 as builder confidence grew stronger. Any reading above 50 indicates that builders are, overall, feeling good about the future.

"Builders and developers for the 55+ housing sector continue to report increased optimism in the market," said Jim Chapman, chairman of NAHB's 55+ Housing Industry Council. "We are seeing steady consumer demand for homes and communities that are designed to address the specific needs of the mature homebuyer."