So, you're thinking of renovating your home? Smart upgrades can add significant value to your home and they don't have to break the bank!

As you come up with your reno plan, remember that any substantial renovation will require you to notify your home insurance advisor.


Here are five smart home renovation ideas:

1. Curb Appeal
It takes 10 seconds for a home buyer to fall in love with a property, according to REW.ca. This is why curb appeal is so important. Consider cleaning up your home with a new front door at a cost of around $200, add some potted plants for aesthetics and ensure your lawn is clipped and clean. Exterior painting is also a cost-effective way to immediately boost curb appeal.


2. Finish Your Basement
One of the best ways to increase the value of your home is to finish your basement with an income suite. It can generate significant cash flow to help cover your mortgage payments. Instead of putting in a media room that may not add value to the home, do a simple upgrade to your kitchen and bathroom, and freshen up the walls with a neutral paint. Don't forget, when undergoing a major renovation, if there are exposed walls or you are increasing your square footage, your insurance company might need to change your home insurance policy to a home “under construction.”


3. Update Your Kitchen
The best return on investment (ROI) is in kitchen renovations. According to the Appraisal Institute of Canada, you can expect anywhere between 75 to 100 per cent ROI on a kitchen remodel. With resale in mind, put your personal style on hold and keep it clean and simple. Rather than investing in granite and quartz countertops (that can cost around $100 per square foot installed), purchase new stainless steel appliances that will freshen up your home. You may even be eligible for a rebate on your new energy-efficient appliances from BC Hydro and FortisBC.


4. Bathroom Upgrades
The bathroom is the easiest place to do a cosmetic fix and almost always pays for itself. Simple and effective bathroom renovations include replacing cracked tiles and old grouting, installing new faucets, or painting existing wooden cabinets and replacing handles.


5. The Fine Details
Take the time to go around your home with a critical eye. Replace door handles with smart matching contemporary versions at a cost of around $20 each, replace burnt-out bulbs, and freshen up your home with a new lick of interior paint. Get rid of that bright blue feature wall and stick with safe colours like off-white and pale greys. The ROI for a fresh coat of paint can be up to 165 per cent, so keep it simple and uncluttered! Once your project is completed, review your new upgrades with your insurance agent to ensure you are properly protected.


To learn more about how insurance can play an important part in home renovations and everything else from hosting great deck parties and protecting your belonging, visit bcaa.com/hometips. BCAA provides Award Winning Home Insurance to everyone and Members save up to 15%.


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