Remodeling report shows which projects bring most return

Dennis Norman St LouisThe National Association of REALTORS (NAR) published its’ “Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report” for this year and in it rated exterior replacement projects among the most cost-effective home improvement projects. This reinforces something most REALTORS will tell you which is that a homes curb appeal plays a significant role in the sale of the home.

“This year’s ‘Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report’ highlights the importance of exterior projects, which not only provide the most value, but also are among the least expensive improvements for a home,” said National Association of Realtors® President Ron Phipps, broker-president of Phipps Realty in Warwick, R.I. “Since resale value can vary by region, it’s smart for home owners to work with a Realtor® through the remodeling and improvement process; they can provide insight into projects in their neighborhoods that will recoup the most when the owners are ready to sell.”

Report highlights:

  • Nine of the top 10 most cost-effective projects in terms of value recouped are exterior replacement projects.
    • The steel entry door replacement remained the project that returned the most money, with an estimated 102.1 percent of cost recouped upon resale; it is also the only project in this year’s report that is expected to return more than the cost.
    • The mid-range garage door replacement, a new addition to the report this year, is expected to recoup 83.9 percent of costs.
  • Replacement projects usually outperform remodel and addition projects in resale value because they are among the least expensive and contribute to curb appeal.
    • Various types of siding and window replacement projects were expected to return more than 70 percent of costs. Upscale fiber-cement siding replacement was judged by Realtors® the most cost effective among siding projects, recouping 80 percent of costs.
    • Upscale vinyl window replacements were expected to recoup more than other types of windows with 72.6 percent upon resale.
    • Another exterior project, a wood deck addition, tied with a minor kitchen remodel for the fourth most profitable project recouping an estimated 72.8 percent of costs.
  • The top interior projects for resale value included an attic bedroom and a basement remodel. Both add living space without extending the footprint of the house.
    • An attic bedroom addition recoups an estimated 72.2 percent nationally upon resale.
    • A basement remodel recoups an estimated 70 percent.
  • Improvement projects that are expected to return the least are a midrange home office remodel, recouping an estimated 45.8 percent; a backup power generator, recouping 48.5 percent; and a sunroom addition, recouping 48.6 percent of costs.

“Curb appeal remains king — it’s the first thing potential buyers notice when looking for a home, and it also demonstrates pride of ownership,” said Phipps.

NAR turned to Hanley Wood, LLC to do the survey and prepare the report. Hanley Wood has a great online tool that allows you to pick your region of the country and then see a complete list of remodel/rehab/replacement items, the average cost of the project as well as the value the project adds to a home.

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