For years, clients have asked my designers, handymen, licensed contractors, and me what improvements they can make that would enhance the value of their home significantly more than the cost of the improvement.
Most of the time, these questions were asked just before the homeowner is about to sell their property; on the other hand, some savvy homeowners figure they should make these improvements now so they can enjoy them until they are ready to sell. Occasionally, people would ask me whether they would get their money back from upgrading their electric system or adding solar panels.
In the past, I generally cautioned against significant improvements to the major systems of the house because most buyers fail to appreciate the importance of those types of costly enhancements. However, as towns continue to enact ordinances banning gas appliances and we shift to electric cars, there will be intensifying scrutiny over the electric capacity of the home.
By way of example, many are finding that the 100-amp panel that used to be sufficient for a small home in Palo Alto or Menlo Park simply can’t handle the increased demands placed on it. Electric cars, water heaters, ovens, clothes dryers, and heating systems all use a lot of electricity. As a result, more and more buyers are asking if homes have electric vehicle chargers or, at a minimum, whether the home’s electric system could support them.