Real estate investors want to get the most bang for their financial buck, right? It’s all part of the buy/rehab process when determining the viability of a potential project. You want to make the property appealing to the widest audience yet you don’t want to make improvements that will cause you to lose money or take longer to sell the property. What are some of the improvements you may consider avoiding?

For those who have toasted their feet to a warm fireplace and working lights during a power outage, they might disagree but some property owners install a backup power generator. While certainly a lifesaver when in need, on average these heavy duty units can cost thousands. If you’re thinking of adding one to your property as an improvement, unless your buyer is fresh from a Kodiak winter storm, move this “upgrade” off your list.

Most guys love to just hang out in their garage. Their very own “man cave” where they can do the things they do. Whatever they are. But some go overboard when decorating an unheated area where cars are parked. While nice and makes for a good showing, some upgrades can cost upwards of $50,000 or more to install the newest built-in storage cabinets, state-of-the-art flooring and audio/video system installation. Don’t expect to get all of that back because you won’t.

A swimming pool and outdoor entertainment area is always a sight for sore eyes. Except for those eyes who can’t envision a relaxing day beside the pool but instead see constant cleaning and maintenance. As well as the additional costs of homeowners’ insurance the additional liability will cause.

Homeowners can detect when there’s shabby construction. The countertops are made from cheap materials and the drawers in the kitchen are pure particle board. Yet on the opposite end of the scale are high-end, luxury appointments that don’t seem to fit with the house. Such accoutrements will get noticed but not in the way you’re hoping.

In general, when repairing a flip for sale, bring it up to the standards of the neighborhood and concentrate on cost-effective remodels such as interior and exterior paint as well as a thorough cleaning. After a few flips, you’ll soon find the perfect match of upgrade costs and return on investment.