Eleanor Osborn's Blog
Ready to sell that home you've sunk your heart, soul and savings account into? Hoping to get a great return on all those green upgrades you had professionally performed? Don't rely on chance to get the ROI you deserve. Take charge of the sale of your high-performance home, and make sure everyone from your sales team to your prospective buyers have the full picture before you settle.
Prioritize Your Green Upgrades
Some home improvements pack more environmental punch than others, and projects that lower the costs of heating and cooling your home are biggies. Consider upgrades that will save both you and your prospective buyer money down the road, including:
- Installing solar panels
- Replacing drafty doors and windows
- Upgrading to Energy Star Appliances
- Updated Your HVAC system
These will all net you a bigger return on investment than replacing existing hardwood with bamboo, for instance. Think long-term savings when investing in green upgrades, and buyers will love you for it.
Select Your Marketing Team Carefully
Everyone on your marketing team, from the person who appraises your home to the real estate agent who shows it should have experience with selling high-performance homes. These are the professionals who will best appreciate the upgrades you've made and how they'll benefit buyers in the long term. Even if you've chosen your sales team wisely, don't rely on them to ask the right questions. Come prepared with the right answers instead. Walk with your appraiser and point out the improvements you've made and why, and then show them the documentation.
Be Prepared to Prove Your Claims
One common reason many homeowners perform green upgrades, aside from adding to their own comfort, is to boost their home's resale value. Keep this in mind when performing a home improvement that has any kind of environmental impact. Keep receipts and consumer information when replacing windows and doors. Keep the manuals for Energy Star appliances and be able to prove the R-Values on that new attic insulation. Your real estate agent needs to be able to see the whole picture to market your home most effectively, and your appraiser needs it to increase your appraisal value.
Don't Pursue LEED Certification
It sounds impressive, having your home green-certified, but the hoops you'll have to jump through may outweigh the advantages. Simply making savvy upgrades in all the right places and in all the right ways may actually be more impactful to a prospective buyer than claiming certified status. It will save you money, too.
Don't improve your home more than you need to make it safe, comfortable and cost-effective for your family. In most instances, simple upgrades like the ones listed here will be sufficient to help you claim excellent returns on your investments.