Are you planning to sell your Southern California house in the near future? Are you interested in making overall improvements to your space? There are plenty of changes you can make to increase the value and comfort of your home.

Not all home projects are created equal, though. So before you decide to invest in a home improvement project, make sure your time, money, and efforts are benefiting the overall value of your home.

To get you started, we’ve compiled 5 of the most valuable improvements you can make to your home in Southern California.

Kitchen Remodel

The kitchen is often considered the heart of your home– it’s where both you and your guests naturally gravitate. So when it comes to increasing the value of your home, the kitchen is king.

Old, outdated kitchens are a major barrier for resale. An upgraded and attractive kitchen, on the other hand, is irresistible to potential buyers.

A kitchen remodel is a big investment– a complete renovation typically costs between $12,701 and $33,052, depending on the size of your space.

If you decide to go all-in, aim to earn a 67% return on your investment when you eventually sell your home. Or, if a total remodel just isn’t in your budget, choose one or two smaller projects to tackle instead.

Here are some renovation ideas to spice up your kitchen and add value to your home.

Paint Your Cabinets

Painting your kitchen cabinets is a great way to save you the headache and expense of a complete replacement. It will take some time and effort–especially if you do it yourself–but will have a dramatic effect on the overall look of your kitchen.

To choose the right paint, take one of your cabinet doors to a local paint store. Talk with a professional to find out what type of material your cabinets are made out of and what paint products will help you achieve the best results.

Add A Fresh Backsplash

Adding a new tile backsplash between your cabinetry and countertops will create a unique and fresh focal point in your kitchen. Visit your local home improvement store to look at your options and stock up on the tools you’ll need to complete this project.

If you’ve never worked with tile and grout before, make sure you do your research and talk to a professional to make sure the end result is something you can be proud of.

Shine Some New Light

Replacing the lights in your kitchen can serve two purposes:

  1. Make your space brighter and more welcoming
  2. Enhance the design of your space

This kitchen project can be as simple as switching out some lightbulbs, or as involved as adding brand new fixtures.

Replacing your bulbs with energy efficient LED lights is the easiest way to save money and brighten up your space. LED lights are also designed to be more durable and longer lasting.

If you’re adding brand new fixtures to your kitchen, such as recessed lighting or over-the-table chandelier, make sure you work with a professional electrician. You can do more harm than good if you try to tackle something as complex as electrical wiring all on your own.

Upgrade Your Appliances

Updating your kitchen with new appliances is a great way to spruce up the look of your kitchen. Stainless steel is the most popular material choice for kitchen appliances, so adding this throughout will definitely add to the overall value of your home.

The one catch here is you typically have to replace all or none. Having mismatched appliances can hurt the look of your kitchen and turn potential buyers away.

Window Replacement (Or Repair)

The windows in your house provide you with views, light, and fresh air. They can also contribute to a huge electric bill– up to 20% higher, according to

Old, drafty windows cause your air conditioner (or heater) to work harder. This is a big turnoff for homebuyers. Replacing your windows may not drastically change the overall look of your home, but it will bump up your asking price and make it easier to sell.

Although windows can make a difference in your resale value, don’t assume all windows are created equal. Here in California, you should choose windows specifically engineered to keep your house cool.

Rather than completely replacing your windows, you can also opt to repair them. A window restoration specialist or handyman can replace broken panes and window hardware, or add weather-stripping and repaint frames.

Simple fixes are a great way to keep your costs down while still adding some value (and energy efficiency) to your home.


As California continues to experience record-breaking drought, conserving water has become increasingly important. As a homeowner though, seeing your lush, green yard die off and turn brown is difficult. Especially since a dead yard doesn’t do much for curb appeal.

A landscaped yard is one of the top ways to add value to your home. But how do you combat drought with keeping your yard looking great?

A relatively new landscaping trend called xeriscaping is taking a stance. It may be the answer for increasing the value on your California home.

Xeriscaping is designed for our arid environments and uses native, low-maintenance, and drought-resistant plants for a desert garden look. You don’t have to feel pigeonholed into a specific look, either.

There are plenty of plants you can choose from, including:

  • Native grasses
  • Wildflowers
  • Shrubs
  • Bulbs
  • Succulents
  • Herbs

Beyond plants, you can also add a patio, porch, garden walkway, or bench to your yard. These features increase the aesthetic appeal and usability of your yard, making it more appealing to a future homebuyer.

Replacing Or Removing Carpets

Wall-to-wall carpet is common in many homes and can add a certain level of comfort and “hominess” to your space. However, old, stained, or smelly carpet will quickly bring down your home’s value and turn off potential buyers.

Wall-to-wall carpet is a tricky thing. Everyone has a different opinion about what color and style of carpet they prefer. And with the growing concern over the chemicals used in carpet processing and its potential for allergens, many homeowners decide to go with a “less-is-more” approach.

Whatever your personal opinions, the fact remains that if you want to make your home more valuable, you either need to:

  • Install new carpet; or
  • Remove the carpet and use another type of flooring material

Solar Panels

Solar panels are one of the most in demand and high-value features you can add to your house.
Electricity costs in Southern California are slated to increase by almost 80% in the coming years. Installing solar panels and giving your house energy independence will save you money and make your home incredibly valuable in the minds of future buyers.

Adding solar panels to your Southern California will provide a huge return on investment– so long as you buy instead of lease the solar panels. Many people are under the misconception that it’s cheaper to lease instead of buy when it fact the exact opposite is true.

  • Cost of leasing per kwh: $.18/kwh (plus the lease increases 3% every year)
  • Cost of buying per kwh: $.06/kwh (sometimes less!)

Leasing solar panels is problematic if you plan to sell your house in the near future. Leasing panels means you’re entering into a contractual partnership with the owner of the panels. This contract may be difficult to transfer and the potential buyer may not want or be able to take ownership of the lease (or your home).

Buying panels adds thousands of dollars in value to your home and will not only attract future buyers, but allow you to sell your home for a higher price.

If buying solar panels seems out of reach, contact us. We offer financing options and require as little as $0 out of pocket.