Styled, Staged & Sold

Bringing you the latest home design and staging trends. From REALTOR® Magazine.

Kitchen Remodeling: The Do's and Don'ts of Improving Resale Value

By Stephen Jones,

People generally love a beautiful new kitchen. With state of the art appliances, they feel as though they are master chefs in the comfort of their own homes. However, many people also remodel their kitchens to improve the resale value of their homes. Perhaps they plan to sell in the near future, or they just want to be prepared for down the road. In any case, be sure to follow these do's and don'ts of kitchen remodeling.

Don't Go Crazy with the Refinance!

One idea home owners might have is to refinance their home with a cash-out option and then use that money to rebuild the kitchen. However, this might wind up just letting them break even.

Let's say a home owner purchased his home for $300,000. The cash out of his refinance is $20,000, and he uses that to create an entirely new kitchen. A couple years later, he goes to sell the house. It appraises for $330,000, but people are only making lower offers. He is basically forced to not move or accept a lower offer of say $310,000. This will then leave the home owner short on the house, which is not good at all!

Do Observe Trends

Try to find out what types of kitchens are selling in the area. Do people prefer stainless steel or black for the appliances? Are people looking for eat-in kitchens, or do they prefer ones that have just an island in them? Look at pictures of recently sold homes in your area, or take note of kitchens at open houses to help gauge trends.

Consider Available Space

Turning a small kitchen into a larger one is sometimes a “do” and sometimes a “don't.” It’s a “do” if the extra space is within the budget and if it will not take over another part of the house. However, let's imagine that in order to make your kitchen larger, you need to take out part of the living room or dining room. Home owners need to carefully consider what this could do to the resale value of their home. Will people prefer a huge kitchen with either a tiny or nonexistent dining room, or would they rather have moderately sized spaces for all of these rooms that are generally considered "must haves"?

Clearly, remodeling a kitchen is a huge undertaking that will likely leave home owners without cooking space for awhile. Therefore, it's important to be aware of all the components that go into such a remodeling, particularly how it may affect resale if they plan to sell their home in the near future.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Stephen Jones is the community development manager for, which was established in 2000 and since has grown to be one of the UK’s largest online DIY stores. Prior to working for, Jones had been involved in the building trade for more than 10 years and is a qualified tradesman.


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