Data from homeowner surveys show that nearly 80 percent of home sellers complete at least one home improvement project before they put their home on the market. If you’re about to sell your home, you’re going to compete against upgraded homes 8 out of 10 times.
If you’re in that 80 percent who plan to have some work done, you might be wondering which projects you can do to increase your home’s resale value the most. After all, the goal of doing home projects before selling is to get a higher sales price and sell the home faster.
According to Remodeling Magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value report, 7 of the top 10 improvements providing the highest return on investment are exterior upgrades. Here are the top five exterior home projects to boost resale value.
Manufactured stone veneer
The average national cost to remove 300 square feet of vinyl siding on a home’s front and replace it with a pre-fabricated stone veneer is $9,357. According to the report, a home seller will recoup $8,943 of that cost when the home sells. At a whopping 95.6 percent, a stone veneer is the highest return on investment of any of the report’s 22 surveyed projects.
A new garage door
One of the reasons that exterior improvements help resale value is because they boost curb appeal. Homes that look great from the street attract the most interest from buyers, and the more interest from buyers your home has, the higher price it will fetch on the market.
It might not seem that glamorous, but replacing an older garage door with a modern, more decorative one is an upgrade that provides a 94.5-percent return on investment, the second-highest of any home improvement project.
Before considering any cosmetic enhancements to your home’s exterior, it’s important to first assess the condition of its major elements. If your home’s siding is damaged or exceedingly worn, it needs to be addressed first. Home buyers notice obvious defects almost immediately.
Siding replacement is not cheap. The average national cost for vinyl siding is over $14,000, but buyers know that brand new siding means they won’t have to replace it themselves – or even paint it – anytime soon.
Window and roof replacement would fall into the same category: expensive-but-necessary projects because damaged or non-functional items drag a home’s value down.
A deck addition
Home buyers tend to want homes with outdoor spaces, and a deck addition provides added resale value. Decks are expensive, though.
A wood deck will set the average homeowner back about $14,000, around the same as whole-house siding replacement. Wood decks bring with them more maintenance than composite-material decks, but they run about $5,000 less on average. The lower initial cost makes a wood deck a slightly better return on investment compared to composite decks.
A new front entryway
Again, because of the importance of curb appeal, seemingly mundane updates can often provide added resale value. A new front door is one of those updates.
Especially if you have an older home, a modern front entryway can instantly transform a home’s exterior appearance. You want to pick something that’s welcoming and comes across as high-quality. A quality steel-door entryway will set you back about $2,000, according to the national average cost, and has an estimated return on investment of 69 percent.
The bottom line
Inexpensive things like landscaping and outdoor lighting can boost your home’s curb appeal but don’t add much real dollar value to a home’s sales price. Other projects, such as kitchen and bathroom renovations, boost resale value but come with large price tags.
Sticking to a select few exterior home improvement projects costs less than a major interior renovation and often provides a better return on investment, according to the experts.
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