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How to Choose a Home Improvement Project and Not Lose Your Shirt

  • Remodeling Magazine’s 2018 Cost vs. Value Report is out. Using data from 2017, the article estimates the average ROI on many home improvement projects and compares them to the previous year.  So before you plunge headlong into a remodeling project this weekend, you may want to take a look at what your updates will bear in terms of ROI.  Some of these projects are generally undertaken by homeowners for  their own enjoyment and they spend many years in the home and thus the ROI may not be an important consideration when selling.  In other cases, homeowners may take on these projects solely to boost their sales price after years of occupying the home with little or no improvements and now can benefit from updating and enhanced curb appeal.  
  • Many of the items on the list are high priced items, such as siding and deck additions but they also provide the largest return when it’s time to sell.  The stone veneer added to the exterior of a home looks great and is a great on trend addition for a dated home.  You can get the full details about the report and the year-to year comparisons here. 

  • The top-10 home improvements in order of largest return:

  • Garage Door Replacement           98.3%
  • Manufactured Stone Veneer         97.1%
  • Deck Addition (wood)                   82.8%
  • Minor Kitchen Remodel                81.1%
  • Siding Replacement                      76.7%
  • Window Replacement (vinyl)        74.3%
  • Universal Design Bathroom         70.6%
  • Bathroom Remodel                       70.1%
  • Window Replacement (wood)      69.5%
  • Roof Replacement                        68.4%

Sadly, one of the poorest ROI noted is the outdoor patio— which has surged in popularity in recent years with outdoor kitchens, heaters, fire pits and plush seating —with an ROI of just over 50%.  Personally, I am filling in my pool this year after serious consideration of the costs to repair (plaster and tile), the lack of interest of pool companies to assist in making cost efficient recommendations and the total number of days I actually use the pool in the summer. 

 After a couple of estimates I learned it would cost me about $20,000 to repair the pool which is 14 years old.  Plus the new heater I installed in 2014 is shot after I think it was destroyed by the pool company dumping chemicals in to the pool at start up last summer and failing to start the pool circulating.  If you are facing a similar situation with a pool contact me and I can share my results with you. Knowing that the money I spend on a new plan for the outdoor patio area may only return me 50% of my investment may certainly alter my plans.