Whether you are looking to increase your quality of living or hoping to attract buyers and a higher price point when you put your home on the market, not all home improvements are created equal. When you begin to consider home improvements, start with the following areas of your home that will recoup the most out of your investment.
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According to Remodeling magazine's 2015 Cost vs. Value report, the following mid-range home improvements recovered the most of investment costs:
Entry Door Replacement (steel)
Average cost: $1,230
Cost recouped: 101.8%
Steel doors are a good option for replacing your current door. Not only are they typically cheaper than wood or fiberglass but are also lower maintenance, energy efficient, insulating, and secure.
Manufactured Stone Veneer
Average cost: $7,150
Cost recouped: 92.2%
2015 is the first time manufactured stone veneer has made the Cost vs. Value report, let alone one of the best improvements for resale value. This estimate is based on a project that calls for replacing 300 square feet of vinyl siding from the bottom third of a house with manufactured stone veneer.
Garage Door Replacement
Average cost: $1,595
Cost recouped: 88.4%
A new garage door will instantly boost your home's curb appeal and lessen the need for regular basis maintenance. This home improvement increased in the Cost vs. Value report by nearly 13% from 2014. The new door used for analysis was uninsulated, single-layer, embossed steel with a 10-year limited warranty. An insulated door would be more energy efficient but would also increase your investment.
Siding Replacement (vinyl)
Average cost: $12,013
Cost recouped: 80.7%
You'll know it's time for new siding if your current siding is rotting, warping, cracked, faded, etc. New siding will up your curb appeal and decrease heating and cooling bills.
Deck Addition (wood)
Average cost: $10,048
Cost recouped: 80.5%
Outdoor living areas, like decks, are increasing in popularity as homeowners bring the comforts of their home out into the open. A 16x20' deck, used for cost and value analysis, is likely to recoup a large portion of investment when it comes to resale.
Minor Kitchen Remodel
Average cost: $19,226
Cost recouped: 79.3%
Mid-range kitchen remodels recoup investments well, simply because it's a room homeowners spend a large majority of their time in. Remodeling magazine used a dated 200 square-foot kitchen for analysis by leaving cabinet boxes in place but replacing fronts with new raised-panel wood doors and drawers, including new hardware. Wall ovens and cooktops were replaced with new energy-efficient appliances. Laminate countertops were replaced, mid-priced sink and faucets were installed, walls and trim were repainted, and the flooring was replaced with resilient flooring.
Window Replacement (wood)
Average cost: $11,341
Cost recouped: 78.8%
While replacing existing double-hung windows with insulated wood replacement windows topped the list, remember that wood models require more maintenance than vinyl. Wood windows are a beautiful option in terms of craftsmanship, but when it comes to efficiency, wood and vinyl are very similar.
Average cost: $51,696
Cost recouped: 77.2%
Making use of unused square footage can be of great advantage for homeowners. For analysis, Remodeling magazine used costs for a 15x15' attic bedroom with a 5x7 bathroom with shower, insulation and finishing of ceiling and walls, carpeting, electrical wiring and lighting.
Window Replacement (vinyl)
Average cost: $11,198
Cost recouped: 72.9%
Vinyl windows are a great option for window replacement, because they are essentially maintenance-free, and depending on the type and size, can be as much as half the price of wood counterparts.
Average cost: $65,442
Cost recouped: 72.8%
Your basement remains one of the smartest places in your home to remodel, finish, or renovate. You can add useable square footage to your home without an addition at a third of the cost. Use this blog post for a guide on adding value to your home with a finished basement.
Other Home Improvements with a High Cost Recoup
- Entry Door Replacement (fiberglass) - 72%
- Roofing Replacement - 71.6%
- Bathroom Remodel - 70%
- Deck Addition (composite) - 68%
- Major Kitchen Remodel - 67.8%
- Garage Addition - 64.8%
- Family Room Addition - 64.1%
- Two-Story Addition - 64.1%
- Master Suite Addition - 61.7%
If you're interested in financing any major or minor home improvements, download our free Rehab and Construction Guide for options on combining the cost of renovations and your mortgage into one monthly payment.