Before we move on to sales trends and inside homes to talk about the hot decorating trends for 2012, I thought I’d share with you a recent report from The National Association of Realtors that identifies the top home improvement projects, according to return on investment (ROI) in 2011. The 2011 trend is predicted to extend into 2012. So, if you’re planning home improvements to a home for sale, here’s the most sensible spending strategy:
It’s What’s on the Outside…
When it comes to people, what on the inside is what counts. Not so for homes for sale. The number one bang for the buck home improvement project you can undertake is exterior remodeling and replacement, according to The National Association of Realtors’ 2011-12 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report.
“This year’s Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report shows the value of putting your home’s best façade forward, so to speak,” said National Association of Realtors® President Moe Veissi, broker-owner of Veissi & Associates Inc., in Miami. “Inexpensive exterior replacement projects are not only crucial to a home’s regular upkeep, but are also expected to recoup close to 70 percent of costs. Specific exterior projects such as siding, window and door replacements are part of regular home maintenance, so many homeowners are already undertaking them. These projects also do not require expensive materials and they have the added bonus of instantly adding curb appeal.”
What to Do?
According to the report, “seven of the top 10 most cost-effective projects nationally in terms of value recouped are exterior replacement projects.” Upscale fiber-cement siding replacement ranked number one in ROI, with an estimated 78 percent of costs recouped upon resale.
“Two additional siding replacement projects were in the top 10, including foam-backed vinyl siding, expected to return 69.6 percent of costs, and upscale vinyl siding, expected to recoup 69.5 percent of costs. Three door replacements were also among the top exterior replacement projects. The steel entry door replacement is the least expensive project in the report, costing little more than $1,200 on average and expected to recoup 73 percent of costs.”
“The upscale garage door replacement jumped seven spots to number six this year, primarily due to the average cost of the project declining more than 15 percent nationally. The upscale and midrange garage door replacement projects are expected to return more than 71 percent of costs. One window replacement project – upscale vinyl – rounded out the last exterior replacement project in the top 10, expected to recoup 69.1 percent of costs.”
In upcoming blogs, I’ll get into each of these profitable projects in detail. But for now, assess your home for sale and see where your money will be most wisely spent.