Newsflash: [Boston] Figuring out where your home fits into a crazy market- question about updating

Hello! Forgive me if I’m asking naive questions- this is my first time buying and my first post to this sub!My wife and I are in the process of buying a house in a town right outside Cambridge/Somerville (Camberville to you locals) and a nice commuting distance into downtown Boston. As I’m sure you’re aware, the housing market in the Boston area is totally crazy bananas.The house we’re buying (small/medium sized single family with a huge yard, a little over a mile from the T) is pretty cheap for the area (mid $600Ks- actually cheaper than a lot of the condos in the area) because it has been lived in by a single family for the last few decades. While it’s not in disrepair (hopefully! Inspection is today!), it definitely needs a lot of updating. We are planning to live in it for several years, but will probably eventually sell (maybe in like 5 years), and would like to make a profit when we do.I’ve been reading a lot about what kinds of updates to make to your home to increase the resale value without going overboard. One thing I keep hearing is to make sure your updates match the price point of your house. For example, spending a ton of money to put in super deluxe kitchen isn’t a good idea if the rest of the house isn’t comparably fancy. This seems sound to me, but it’s hard to get a sense of where our house might fit in. The guidelines I’m seeing online for what a “mid range” home sells for are all like $200k. You can’t even buy a parking spot in the Boston area for only $200k!We definitely want to make our house increase in value to be more comparable to the other homes around us (most single families in the area go for like $720k or more), but we also don’t want to over-update, if you know what I mean. This is probably a stupid question… but how do I figure out what that sweet spot is?The very specific question that brought me to thinking about all this is what kind of countertops to put in our kitchen. We’re not going to make crazy updates to the kitchen- probably just paint the cabinets to make them a more modern style, and put in new counters, sink, and backsplash. All the (much more expensive) homes we’ve toured in the area have fancy granite countertops, but a lot of what I’m reading online recommends against granite counters unless your home is top of the line. I don’t want to put in unnecessarily expensive countertops, but I also don’t want to make our house less competitive when we eventually resell it. The range of home prices in our area seems so small- maybe there really isn’t a “mid range” in the Boston area?Idk. What do you all think? Any advice?



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