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Home Improvements that Aren’t Worth the Spend

These Home Improvements Aren’t Worth the Spend

Before you decide to dig that Corvette-shaped swimming pool, you may want to consider how much value it adds to the home. If it adds less value than it costs to build, you’re making a bad investment decision. Here are five home improvements that homeowners think increases the value of the home, but they actually don’t, especially given their cost to run or maintain.

Energy-Efficient Windows

Installing double-paned, energy efficient windows may reduce how much you pay in electricity, but t will most likely only save you about a third of the cost it takes to replace your current windows. Before you decide to do this, factor in your location (as this determines the temperature and thus cost of heating and cooling), and how much it will cost to install the windows.

Swimming Pool

While estate agents love to advertise the splash pool overlooking the view of the entire city, it’s only useful for about three to four months of the year. But it adds value to the resale of the home, you say. Sure, but this added value is probably less than the cost to build the pool, and then factor in the costs to maintain it and you might reconsider your decision.


This doesn’t include a built in oven. Luxuries refer to those add-ons that make a home seem larger than life, such as a tennis court, sauna, or life-size chess board. These may be great to draw buyers, but no one wants to pay for something they know they’ll either never use or don’t need. Before building a luxury item, ask an estate agent how much value it adds and then weigh this against the cost to build it and how much time you’ll actually spend using it.

Air Conditioning

Air conditioning (heating and cooling units) is becoming pretty commonplace in South African retail. This doesn’t mean that every home should have one or that every buyer needs one. The cost to run the unit and maintain it, on top of installing it, may not be worth the amount it adds to the resale value.

Ostentatious Gardens

While your friends may call your home Babylon, the new buyer is looking at costs to maintain. When it comes to gardens and landscaping, simple is better and requires less work to keep it looking good. A garden adds value. Hanging gardens do not.

Before you make renovations or additions to your home, think about how much each change will cost to do and to maintain. When you compare this amount to the resale value it adds, you will see a clear financial picture of whether it is really worth it.

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