With summer weather upon us and Kansas City home values on the rise, it’s natural to follow the urge to get going on outdoor-oriented improvement projects. One of our (and our buyers’) favorite added features is the outdoor kitchen. That temporary folding table you used to see next to the rollaway barbecue is now frequently supplanted by a fully equipped permanent installation.
But if you are planning on selling soon, it’s easy to overdo the outdoor kitchen idea. Home values don’t always return every dollar spent, so with likely investment returns in mind, here are a few guidelines to help you jazz up your outdoor area without breaking the bank.
— Whether you have a large backyard or tiny one, amount of space isn’t what matters as much as the setup. Plan your kitchen so the cook faces toward the entertaining area. When guests can interact while the cooking is going on (and the chef isn’t stuck facing the wall), the fun of outdoor entertaining comes naturally.
— You’re building an outdoor kitchen, so be sure the surfaces are built to withstand the elements. Outdoor-rated appliances and a low-maintenance paint finish on cabinets will combat corrosion…and keep your kitchen looking fresh for when you plan to sell! Also, consider elevating the cabinet so you can more easily hose off underfoot messes.
— An outdoor fireplace can warm memories in even the steeliest of potential buyers. Who doesn’t love thought of warm summer evenings spent gathered around a firepit? But let’s be practical – a gas fireplace insert is far handier than a real wood-burning firepit. You don’t need to pay to run a gas line outside either – there are plenty of freestanding gas fireplace models to choose from.
While not likely to bring nearly the same return as a total kitchen remodel, adding simple outdoor kitchens can be a simple way to both enjoy backyard space and increase potential home values in the future. If that future is coming sooner rather than later, do contact us before you commit to any remodeling projects…We’ll be happy to discuss current Kansas City home values with you anytime!