Home Upgrades That Don’t Pay Off

Five renovation projects that experts say just aren’t worth your time (or money). 

By Allegra Muzzillo
Yellow front doorAimee Herring
  • Home office: “If you convert a bedroom into an office, your home will be listed as having one less bedroom―big mistake,” says CNN’s Gerry Willis. Barbara Corcoran, founder of the Corcoran Group, a Manhattan real estate firm, agrees: “People try to envision a room for little Jenny but can’t make the leap past your piles of messy papers.”
  • Concrete patio: “It’s almost guaranteed to crack,” says Corcoran. “And there’s no good way to repair it. Plus, it reflects light, causing a harsh glare.”
  • Green marble counters: Steer clear of boldly colored finishes and materials. “Loud patterns can be off-putting, so don’t do anything radical,” says Vern Yip, a designer and the host of HGTV's Deserving Design. “If you’re going with granite counters, choose solid black.”
  • Tennis and basketball courts: Not everyone is a sports fan, and these eat up large amounts of yard space.
  • Wall-to-wall carpeting: “It’s a personal choice that likely won’t appeal to the majority of buyers, especially if it has stains on it,” says John Gidding, a designer on HGTV’s Designed to Sell.
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