Projects that Don’t Add Value to Your Santa Cruz County Home for Sale

Posted by Lauren Spencer on Tuesday, December 21st, 2010 at 11:01pm.

There is no simple way to discover which home-improvement projects will yield the highest return when you’re ready to sell your home. There are many variables that come into play such as the state of the real estate market when you put your Santa Cruz County home up for sale, how old your home is, and the style of your home. 

Here are several costly projects to pass up if you want to get the biggest bang for your bucks:

Extravagant Landscaping

Buyers expect a well-maintained yard; they don't expect the home's value to increase because of it. Beautiful landscaping may encourage potential buyers to take a closer look at your Santa Cruz County home for sale, but it most likely will not add to the selling price. If a buyer is unable or unwilling to put in the effort to maintain an elaborate garden, it becomes a negative feature rather than a positive one.

Swimming Pool

A swimming pool seems like fun to have, but can actually be more of a hassle than a pleasure. Many potential buyers consider swimming pools expensive and time consuming to maintain. Buyers may say no to an otherwise perfect house if it has a pool. Or, they may include in the contract a stipulation that the seller has to take down an above-ground pool or fill in an in-ground pool, at their own expense, before closing.

High-End Upgrades

Buyers don’t want to see the absolute cheapest renovations in a Santa Cruz County home for sale, but they also don’t want to pay more for the highest-priced upgrades that they don’t need.   Marble countertops in a kitchen and a built-in sauna in a bathroom are nice, but unless you have a high-end home in a high-end neighborhood, don’t expect to get your money back from these upgrades.

Don’t spend thousands of dollars on a home-improvement project that will not increase your home's value when it comes time to sell.  Do spend money on projects that will make your home a wonderful place to live in now and that may increase the selling price when you’re ready to sell.

Are you ready to sell your home?  I can help.  Give me a call today at 831.662.6522 or email me at For additional information visit my website at


Well-maintained yard 

Swimming pools expensive

Increase the selling price


About Lauren Spencer

Award-Winning Santa Cruz REALTOR®

Lauren Spencer is your local real estate expert, specializing in Santa Cruz real estate and surrounding communities—this is where she lives, works, and plays too. Let her know your questions about the community and county and she'll be happy to fill you in on all you want to know! Lauren Spencer has consistently been voted best local REALTOR in Santa Cruz and is always happy to offer her advice and expertise. Call her at: 800.226.4717.

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