9 Interior Home Renovations: Homeowners & REALTORS® Weigh In on the Best Projects

Posted by Laine Smith on 12/17/15 5:24 PM

Topics: Real Estate Agents Energy Efficient Homes Home Design Selling A Home First Time Home Buyer DIY(Do it Yourself) Mortgage Goals Home Improvement Home Value

Whether you’re planning to sell your home in the near future, want to update your home’s appeal or improve your home’s livability and efficiency, not all remodeling projects are created equal. According to the National Association of REALTORS ® 2015 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report, Americans spent over $300 billion on remodeling projects in 2015.

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Here’s what the report found about homeowners who recently completed remodeling projects and how much REALTORS® estimate those remodeling investments are worth for recoup and sale appeal.

Complete Kitchen Renovation

Cost Estimate: $60,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 90%

Kitchens and bathroom upgrades are almost always a good investment when it comes to home enjoyment and resale value, but a major kitchen renovation is a project for a homeowner not a home seller. Seventeen percent of REALTORS® have suggested the project to sellers and 12 percent said the project has helped them close a deal.

Kitchen Upgrade

Cost Estimate: $30,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 82%

With a 67 percent cost recovery, you usually can’t go wrong with a kitchen upgrade. Even minor kitchen upgrades like freshly painted cabinets, new countertops, and a sink replacement can go far when it comes to selling your home. Fifty-seven percent of REALTORS® have suggested sellers complete a kitchen upgrade and 25 percent said the project helped them close a deal.

Bathroom Renovation

Cost Estimate: $26,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 62%

Bathrooms are the second-best place to update if you plan on selling your home. Forty-five percent of REALTORS® have suggested sellers complete this project prior to selling. For the best practices in remodeling your bathroom, click here.

New Wood Flooring

Cost Estimate: $5,500

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 77%

Hardwood is one of the most highly-sought flooring types for homebuyers. Not only is it versatile, hypoallergenic and durable, it has great resale value. This renovation project boasts a cost recovery of 91 percent and nearly one-fifth of REALTORS® have suggested sellers add it to their home prior to listing.

Adding New Bathroom

Cost Estimate: $36,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 78%

If adding a new bathroom is on your wish list, don’t do it with the hopes of recouping your investment. The average bathroom addition typically only recoups 52 percent of the cost.

New Master Suite

Cost Estimate: $112,500

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 88%

The desire for a master suite has been trending upwards in the housing market, but budget-wise, it’s a costly renovation. If you plan to stay in your home, it might be a good investment for your own livability. If you plan to sell, only 4 percent of REALTORS® have suggested sellers complete a master suite beforehand and only 1 percent said the renovation has helped them close a deal with homebuyers.

HVAC Replacement

Cost Estimate: $7,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 57%

If your HVAC is on its last leg and you’re hoping to sell soon, 19 percent of REALTORS have suggested sellers replace their system. While only 6 percent of REALTORS® said it helped them close a sale, the increased home energy efficiency and 71% cost recoup, it’s a good investment whether you plan to stay put or move.

Insulation Upgrade

Cost Estimate: $2,100

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 61%

One of the lowest cost renovations on this list, new insulation isn’t a heavily suggested renovation for home sellers though it does recoup 95% of its cost on average. Whether you plan to sell or stay and enjoy your energy efficient home, new insulation is a good route for the cost-conscious homeowner.

Basement Conversion to a Living Area

Cost Estimate: $36,000

Amount of homeowners who have more desire to be home since completion: 78%

Finishing your basement is one of the most economical ways to add livable square footage to your home. While it still comes with a hefty price tag, the percent of value recovered from the project is 69 percent. Only eight percent of REALTORS® have suggested this renovation to sellers prior to listing. For budget-friendly tips on finishing your basement, click here.

Interested in financing major or minor home improvements or renovations? Download our free Rehab & Construction Guide for options on rolling the costs of your home improvements into your mortgage loan.

Download: Rehab & Construction Guide

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