Excellent landscape design is one of the easiest and most cost-effective improvements that you can make in order to add value to your home. A survey found that an appealing and well-kept landscape design could potentially add 10-12 percent onto the perceived value of a home. The New York Times gives slightly different figures, estimating the increased values at 4-15%. There are talented landscape designers who quote the added value from their work at rates that are even higher.
There are also homeowners who have seen jaw-dropping value increases to their properties as a result of minimal investments of time and money in thoughtful landscape design. The New York Times once reported a story about a couple who invested about $2,000 in landscaping a modest ranch style home, and then re-sold the home for $100,000 more than its original purchase price. The same article goes on to report several other impressive and profitable sales that homeowners have enjoyed as a result of improving their homes’ landscaping.
Landscaping adds value to real estate for several reasons, as follows:
The Landscape Design Influences a Home Buyer’s First Impression of the Home
A stunning landscape design could inspire a potential buyer to fall in love with your property before s/he even enters the home. Conversely, a mediocre or unappealing landscape design could prompt a potential home buyer to drive right past the home and keep going to the next property on the must-see list.
Tidy Landscape Design Is a Good Overall Indicator That the Property Has Been Maintained Well
If the lawn has been weeded, trimmed, edged and maintained well, it indicates to potential buyers that the entire property has probably been well taken care of. There’s peace of mind in buying a home that has been lovingly attended to, which is obviously attractive to potential home buyers.
Landscaping Could Potentially Help You Offset or Reduce Capital Gains Tax Obligations When You Re-Sell the Home
For many homeowners in the past, landscaping has been an investment that has paid off significantly. Landscaping has the potential to appreciate over time; for example, think about fruit trees that you plant as saplings, that grow and mature and become more valuable as they age.
Landscaping is also not typically taxable, and in some cases might even be helpful for offsetting or reducing capital gains taxes. This is a topic to discuss with your accountant or tax preparer.
These are some of the reasons that landscape design can add value to a home. If you’re a homeowner, we hope you can use this information to make the most of your own home’s landscaping and resulting resale value.