8 Terrible DIY Improvements That Will Devalue Your House

As a homeowner, you may have your own reasons to upgrade your property. Maybe you are giving it a cosmetic facelift to increase its resale value. When upgrading your property, it is important to make smart choices. Otherwise, you will lose a lot of money. You could even turn off potential buyers.

Before launching a home improvement project, it is important to review your market. You should know what upgrades have the best potential. If most homes in your neighborhood have just 3 bedrooms, adding a 4th bedroom to your home can actually boost its resale value. But if the homes in your neighborhood have an average price of $150,000, spending $50,000 on a kitchen remodel is not a wise idea because it won’t automatically increase the value of your home to $200,000. The idea of renovating a home is to increase its resale value. If renovations price the home out of the local market prices, you will have a tough time finding a buyer. But if you really loved those exotic marble countertops or steam showers, you may get them for your own enjoyment. Just don’t expect them to boost the value of your property dramatically.

Here are home improvement projects that may not increase the resale value of your home.


Luxury Bathroom

Upgrading your bathroom is certainly a good idea, but resist the temptation to go overboard. Waterfall showers or imported tiles may cater to your specific tastes, but they are unlikely to have any major impact on the resale value of your home. Studies have shown that bathroom upgrades recoup only about half the expense. Consider simple upgrades. You could perhaps replace the whirlpool tub with a walk-in shower. Whirlpools were popular in the past; however, they occupy too much space and cannot be cleaned easily. You might want to fix a few broken tiles or faucets though. A good idea would be just to cover the bare essentials that make your bathroom look decent.

Swimming Pool

An outdoor pool is not a worthy investment. If you live in an area where you have hot climate throughout the year, you may have a good reason to build a pool in the backyard. In other areas, you have no reason to get one installed in your backyard. Outdoor pools are expensive to build and difficult to maintain. Also, they can turn off buyers who have young children because of the safety hazards posed by them. An in-ground pool might increase your home value by about 8%. An above-ground pool can actually decrease the value of the property.

Wall-to-Wall carpeting

Carpeting looks beautiful at first, but eventually, it will start showing signs of wear and tear. Even buyers who actually love carpeting may not like the colour and texture of your carpet. So there is no point in installing new carpeting immediately before listing the property.

Sunroom Addition

A sunroom is expensive to build and may recoup only about half of the money spent on it. Outdoor enhancements should suit the climate. A sunroom may be a great addition in a state that experiences hot climate all year round. It should also be noted that unheated sunrooms do not add to the square footage of your home.

Built-In Aquarium

A built-in aquarium is a fun addition, but it requires a lot of maintenance. Potential buyers may not be interested in caring for an aquarium. Aquatic animals including fish need a lot of care. And it’s costly to remove an aquarium so it may turn off the buyers.

Garage Addition

A standalone garage that can accommodate just one car may cost $20000 to $40000 to build. However, it is unlikely to recoup its value. While it is true that some buyers may prefer additional garage space, it is not something most buyers are interested in.

High-End Landscaping

Water features, landscaping, and lawn enhancements can improve the curb appeal of your property; however, they are unlikely to have any major impact on the resale value. The ongoing maintenance of these features could even deter some buyers from making an offer on your property. Simple landscaping that doesn’t require extensive maintenance is a better idea.

Quirky decor

Neon green could be your favorite color but if you paint your walls with it, you could end up putting off most buyers. You might think that your walls look amazing, but they don’t appeal to most people. When decorating a home, it is important to stick to a neutral theme.



The following was a guest post by Anne Grobler.  Anne Grobler is an absolute home décor lover with hundreds of designing ideas popping into her head every hour. Anne is also a blogger at OpenAgent, and often shares her ideas with other home owners and décor lovers online. Visit Anne on her LinkedIn.

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