renovations that increase home value

Renovations That Increase Home Value in BC: Our Top 8 Picks

Major Home Renovations & Home Appraisals:  What You Should Know

Are you planning house renovations and want to know the best home improvement investments? Or maybe you are planning to sell your house and are wondering about renovations that increase home value the most.

Whether you are planning to sell in the near future or not, most people want to be reassured that any major renovations they invest in will be reflected in an increased home valuation.

While any renovations that improve the function or look of your home are a good idea, some have a better return on investment value than others. If you are looking to sell quickly or have a limited budget, it is worth researching the renovations that increase home value the most.

As Vancouver Island’s home evaluation expert, D. Fritz Appraisals Inc. knows which renovations can add market value – and which will make your home more valuable to you but won’t necessarily increase the selling price.

Read on for our top 8 picks for renovations that increase home value in BC.

How is Home Value Measured?

When considering home value and how to increase it, are we simply talking about market sale price? According to the Canadian Appraisal Institute, value can be recognized in three ways:

1 – The Value of an Increased Sales Price – Renovations are done primarily to maximize value and profit from a sale.

2 – The Value of Getting to Enjoy or Benefit From a Renovated Space – Renovations are done primarily to improve your lifestyle in the home for the time you live there, which may also add market value in the future.

3 – The Value of Maintaining Your Property – Renovations that keep your home in a condition where it retains its market value. 

If we focus on increasing the market sale price, the value of renovations is usually measured by the possible Return on Investment (ROI). 

  • For example, if you spend $20,000 on a renovation and the valuation of your home goes up by $20,000, that is a 100% ROI. On a home valued at $500,000, that would be a 4% increase in home value.

Renovation ROI will be influenced by the current value of your home, your local housing market, how soon you sell after renovations and how much you spend.

A good home appraiser can help you decide what home renovations will provide the best value return on investment in your area.

Our 8 Top Picks for Renovations That Increase Home Value

When deciding what renovations to complete, consider the following 8 home renovations which have historically proven to bring the biggest return on investment:

  • Kitchen Remodel: 75% – 100% ROI 

At the heart of the modern home, a kitchen can make or break a sale. A functional and neutral refresh will increase value and saleability. Consider new appliances, backsplash, cabinetry or hardware. 

*Unless you plan to live with it for a while, don’t go too high-end, as the return will not be worth it. 

  • Bathroom Refresh: 75% – 80% ROI

Buyers appreciate a fresh, clean and modern bathroom. Consider adding double sinks, upgrading the shower unit and refreshing the paint for the best return on investment.

  • Interior and Exterior Painting:  60% – 75% ROI

Fresh paint gives a high return and increases buyer appeal. Keep colours neutral inside and in keeping with your neighbourhood outside.

  • Structural Upgrades: 75% ROI

Buyers will be put off homes that are badly maintained. If your roof, windows or heating system needs upgrading, prioritize those over cosmetic changes. 

  • Flooring: 100%+ ROI

Remove wall-to-wall carpeting and replace worn flooring for maximum ROI. No need to install expensive hardwood. Buyers are looking for flooring that is clean and easy to maintain.

  • Energy Efficient Additions: 50% – 75% ROI

Such as upgrading your heating and cooling or adding solar panels. Anything that reduces energy use and costs will attract buyers and increase value. For the best ROI, enjoy living with these upgrades for a few years before you sell to reap the benefit of lower bills. 

  • Create More Living Space: 75% – 100% ROI

Buyers are looking for the most usable square footage for their money. Add extra space with an addition or basement renovation, but keep the finish neutral so buyers can choose how to use it. If you remain in the home, a basement rental suite can help you recoup the costs of the reno.

  • Curb Appeal: 80% – 90% ROI

First impressions count. Add value by painting or replacing your garage and front doors. Clean siding and replace any damaged sections.

TIP: Keep receipts and details of any renovation work done to prove the value and quality of the changes.

If your time and budget don’t allow for larger scale renovations, but you want to do something to increase both market value and saleability, this list of 11 easy renovations to increase the value of your home from HGTV star Mike Holmes is a good starting point.

How Your Appraiser Can Help You Choose the Best Renovations to Increase Value

Property appraisers understand the local housing market. They know what investments are giving good returns, can help you understand what your home may be missing compared to local comparative properties, and can give you an idea of what the value may be once improvements are made.

Appraisers can also provide post-renovation evaluations – so you can see what value you’ve added to your home from the work you’ve completed.

In addition, if you’re looking to get financial support for major renovations through a bank loan or mortgage extension, appraisers can provide the valuation your financial lender may require.

Call D. Fritz for Your Appraisal Needs

At D. Fritz, we pride ourselves on being on top of the local housing market, including understanding what buyers are looking for and what renovations will add value and attract buyers’ interest.

Our team can help with valuations for home renovations, mortgage financing and new construction, as well as for the division of assets and estate requirements.

We offer professional real estate appraisals throughout southern and central Vancouver Island from Nanaimo to Victoria and the Gulf Islands.

Contact us today to order an appraisal or for more information on our services.


eco friendly house - tesla solar roof

Top Tips for Eco-Friendly House / Green Homes

Translating into energy savings, increased property value and a reduced carbon footprint, green homes are more sought-after than ever

Now a mainstream concept, eco-friendly homes provide incredible energy savings and contribute to lowered living costs and a positive impact on the environment.

Home buyers now look for smart features and eco-friendly options meant to reduce their carbon footprint, such as the new Tesla solar roof, smart thermostats, energy smart appliances and tankless hot water heaters. These initial investments in new technology dramatically reduce consumption and increase property value.

The Sustainable Home

Sustainability can be separated into passive sustainability and active sustainability

Passive Sustainability

A passively sustainable home is developed to take advantage of its surrounding environment. For instance, a home built with the most exterior surface facing north and south allows it to take advantage of the most sunlight possible. This simple solution reduces the need to turn on heaters and lights during the majority of the day and keeps the temperature comfortable during the evening.

You can also look to the landscape to create passive sustainability. Strategically planted trees add shade to the home, reducing the need to use air conditioning by approximately ten percent. As long as the trees don’t block out any solar panels, they’re an excellent natural way to cool the air both inside and out.

As a bonus, trees provide an excellent anchor for clotheslines to reduce reliance on clothes dryers. Ask your local garden centre for recommendations about the species of trees that would be best for your landscape and region.

Unsure about the permanence of trees? Homeowners can also plant gardens based around native species and grasses. These require much less water and create a naturally thriving green space.

Active Sustainability

The Tesla roof is a prime example of active sustainability. Made of sleek solar tiles, the Tesla roof completely replaces an existing roof with materials three times more durable than standard roofing tiles, but less than the cost of a new roof and new solar panels. The innovative Tesla tiles absorb natural light while the battery banks store extra power for when it’s needed, such as during a power outage (eliminating the need for a fuel generator.)

With the capability to power a home for decades and monitor/control power consumption in real time, the Tesla roof is an ideal solution for reducing energy consumption and costs.

Advancements in smart home technology also make it possible to monitor and lower energy usage. Controlling a thermostat while you’re away from home, using automated window and deck covers (awnings or permanent covers) to shade or heat the house at will, and setting lights on timers are all great ways to spot-reduce energy consumption using smart home technologies. Most commonly managed via smartphone apps, these technologies easily create customized control over your home’s energy expenditure.

Purpose-Built Sustainability During Renovations or New Construction

Green Options for Your New or Improved Home


Adding larger double or triple paned windows will allow your home to absorb as much sunlight as possible, while keeping the temperature at a comfortable level. Floor to ceiling windows will not only frame the views, adding more beauty to your home, but they will help fill your home with natural light.


Sustainable building materials and reclaimed wood are a few other ways that you can lessen environmental impact. For exterior finishing, reconsider vinyl siding and look to a material like fiber cement instead. Sustainable and cost-effective, fiber cement is made from cement, sand and wood fibers. It’s also non-toxic, durable, holds paint well and is designed to last 50 years, much longer than vinyl. In comparison, vinyl is made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) a toxic material that cannot easily be recycled and has a long afterlife.


Low VOC and no VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) paints are also becoming increasingly popular. These “green” paints are low in or free of chemicals that off-gas into your home and degrade the air quality. These paints also biodegrade more easily and have a much shorter afterlife than their toxic counterparts.


Look to sustainable flooring options like engineered bamboo flooring, rather than traditional hardwoods. Harder than maple and oak, bamboo is a renewable material that grows at a much faster rate than hardwood trees, which can take decades to grow. In comparison, a stalk of bamboo only takes five years to grow large enough to be harvested. If you do opt for bamboo flooring, make sure that the flooring you choose is top-quality and manufactured using chemical-free materials.

Upgraded Water Heater

When adding or replacing a water heater, consider a tankless model. These heat water on demand, rather than continuously heating a large supply of water—a drain on energy and resources.

Simple Ways to Improve the Sustainability of Your Home

Not Quite Ready to Renovate? Shrink Your Home’s Carbon Footprint with These Small Changes

  • Cold water wash and skip the clothes dryer- This will save roughly 90% in energy used during the wash cycle, and 100% on the drying cycle. Your clothing will have a longer lifespan as well.
  • Use a programmable or smart thermostat- Climate control reduces excessive energy use and being able to turn AC off or on at the touch of a button can make a huge difference in consumption.
  • Use natural cleaning products- Since cleaning products are used every day, it makes sense to invest in chemical free cleaners. Many eco-friendly products are refillable as well, reducing packaging waste.
  • Add LED lighting- As your lightbulbs fade out, swap them with LED bulbs. These use approximately 90% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs and they last for about 25,000 hours – that’s 3 years if they’re used 24/7!

When you’ve invested in major home improvements and would like to know what your residential property is worth, we can help. With decades of experience, our team of expert appraisers at D.Fritz serves Southern and Central Vancouver Island as well as the Gulf Islands. Contact us today to get a clear picture of your home’s value in today’s marketplace.