5 Ways You Can Accidentally Lower Your Home’s Resale Value

for sale sign

Home for sale | FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

A home is the biggest purchase most people will ever make, and homeowners usually want to do whatever they can to protect the resale value of their property. After all, Americans see their homes not just as a place to lay their heads and raise a family, but also as way to grow their wealth. One-third of people in the United States say real estate is actually a better long-term investment than stocks, bonds, or precious metals, according to a Gallup poll.

Experts might disagree about whether a home is really a good investment, but it’s still a major asset, even if it won’t make you rich. Although home prices are on the rise, homeowners still need to take steps to preserve or enhance their property’s value. Aside from general upkeep, homeowners can make smart upgrades to increase a property’s resale value while avoiding renovation mistakes that lower their home’s selling price, such as custom upgrades that appeal to a small sliver of buyers, removing bedrooms, or making a house too fancy for the neighborhood.

“Projects that take a home significantly beyond community norms are often not worth the cost when the owner sells the home. If the improvements don’t match what’s standard in a community, they’ll be considered excessive,” Scott Robinson, president of the Appraisal Institute, said.

Those big renovation no-no’s aren’t the only ways to sink your value of your home. Small mistakes can also deter would-be buyers and generate less generous offers when you’re trying to sell. Weird paint colors, shabby front yards, dated appliances, and even messy, cluttered rooms can all mean you’ll get less out of your house. Before you put your home on the market, make sure you’re not making these five mistakes that can accidentally lower your home’s resale value.

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