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Does upgrade bath and kitchen increase your house value?

Brad Hunter, chief economist at HomeAdvisor, notes that millennial homeowners are now twice as likely as baby boomers to tackle kitchen and bathroom remodels. Based on findings from HomeAdvisor’s annual True Cost report, most millennials have compromised on the size and condition of their first homes, and many purchase older homes that need repairs in order to be able to afford home ownership at all. Those stats combined with the fact that most people perceive bathroom and kitchen updates as most impactful on home resale value—and kitchens and bathrooms are high-use, high-traffic rooms—results in a high level of interest for these types of projects. Also, says Indiana mortgage banker Corey Vandenberg, appraisers tend to look for updates in these areas first, due to the appeal for potential buyers.


Kitchens will give you one of the biggest returns on your investment, says Aaron Bowman, a realtor in Connecticut. Start by replacing old appliances with new, and make sure all appliances match if possible. You can reface or replace outdated cabinets, as well as revive old flooring with newer tile or vinyl options. And even very simple updates, like a backsplash or new appliances, can be a valuable place to put your money, adds Des Moines-based realtor Sara Hopkins.


“For example, if you just bought a home with standard cabinets and Formica countertops in the kitchen, then a simple swap out for quartz or granite will benefit you in your efforts to realize a return on your investment,” says Head. “Add gourmet-style cabinets and swap out the fluorescent overhead light for monorail lighting and you’ve got a winner.”

With bathrooms, Bowman says a complete renovation usually isn’t required. You can tackle inexpensive elements like vanities, toilets and fixtures, and still get the look and feel of an update without breaking the bank.

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