Real estate has long been considered one of the best sources of investment income. The stock market is always in flux, creating a possibility for a sweeping loss. Savings bonds, money markets, and CDs offer security, but with a low return on investment. Conversely, real estate gives the investor tangible property with the chance for significant growth. However, that growth is impaired when real estate depreciate. Luckily for homeowners, there are ways to protect that property in order to avoid the dangers of depreciation.
1. Maintain Structural Health
It is very easy to let the structural health of a building slip. However, a home that remains in top shape is a home that maintains its value. Make sure that windows, siding, and gutters are in proper working order and replace these items when they begin to show signs of wear.
2. Purchase a Home Security System
A home benefits from a home security system regardless of its location. The installation of a home security system has the added benefit of lowering a home’s insurance premium as well.
3. Install Landscaping
Keeping current with clipping shrubberies, trimming trees, and lawn mowing can sustain the value of a home’s property. Installing further landscaping can cause the property to increase over time. Consider adding easy-to-maintain shrubs and privacy fencing if permitted by local statutes.
4. Support Community Programs
Location is often the top concern of real estate investors, but many believe there is very little they can do to ensure their neighborhood remains a positive place for people and property. However, supporting community programs and schools can go a long way to avoid depreciation. It can also be possible to set up a neighborhood watch program or even a home owner’s association that puts guidelines into place for all homeowners in the area.
5. Expand the Home
Adding a room onto a home can be expensive, but the cost may also be well worth the price. Add a bedroom with an en suite bathroom, expand the size of the kitchen, or even put in sun room or deck. The key is to make sure the home meets or exceeds the standards of other houses in the area.
6. Upgrade Plumbing and Large Appliances
A home’s value can increase significantly with the right appliances. Upgraded refrigerators and stoves that will stay with the home are excellent choices, but homeowners should consider longer term investments as well. An energy efficient water heater can do wonders for a home’s value. A new heating and cooling system can counter depreciation while lowering energy bills.
7. Schedule Routine Pest Control
Homes all over the country experience unwanted house guests. Spiders, ants, wasps, and even rodents can take over a home in a matter of only a few weeks. Once they are established, it can be nearly impossible to eradicate them from the home. In the case of carpenter ants and termites, they can cause structural damage that can cost thousands of dollar to repair. Routine pest control maintenance allows homeowners to save their home and their investment.
Whether protecting one’s own home or a number of structures that are used as rental properties, real estate is a wise investment. These seven steps help to ensure that the property is well-protected and continues to increase in value.