Chances are your home is the most expensive thing you've ever purchased. Yet for most homeowners, a home's purchase price is just the beginning. According to the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, U.S. homeowners collectively spend more than $300 billion a year on residential renovations and repairs.
Many home renovations can increase your enjoyment of the property while living there. But it's worth knowing which improvements hold their value. Let's look at some that do double duty.
Which projects provide return on investment?
Each year, Remodeling magazine releases a Cost vs. Value Report, analyzing common renovations homeowners can make that offer the highest return on investment (ROI). Here are a few that can improve your quality of life while making sure you won't lose money further down the line.
Deck Addition (Wood)
Average Cost: $10,950
Increase in Value: $9,065
Amount recouped: 82.8%
There's nothing quite like a deck for summertime entertaining and relaxing. Adding a wood deck can boost your outdoor living space and create aesthetic appeal in your yard.
According to HomeAdvisor, a professional can install a standard deck with railings and a staircase in one to three weeks. To ensure your project lasts a long time, make sure it's built with high-quality, durable materials.
Minor Kitchen Remodel
Average Cost: $21,198
Increase in Value: $17,193
Amount recouped: 81.1%
Even a perfectly functional kitchen needs a refresh occasionally. Refacing cabinets and replacing hardware, appliances, countertops, and flooring can add style and personality to an area of your home you use several times a day.
Of course, because most kitchens get so much use, remodeling this room can really disrupt your life. Realtor.com estimates you'll be without the use of your kitchen for approximately six weeks. For that reason, you might want to consider kicking off this project in the summer, when you can cook some meals on an outdoor grill.
Window Replacement (Vinyl)
Average Cost: $15,955
Increase in Value: $11,855
Amount recouped: 74.3%
If your home was built before 1970 and still has its original windows, they're probably made of single pane glass. Replacing them with insulated, low-E vinyl windows can lower your energy bill and improve your comfort in the home year-round.
According to Fixr, it takes a professional on average 30 minutes to replace a window, so this is one project that will likely create minimal disruption to your daily life.
Average Cost: $19,134
Increase in Value: $13,422
Amount recouped: 70.1%
You spend time in your bathroom every day, so it should be inviting, as well as help you get ready efficiently in the morning. Updating your bathroom with ceramic tile flooring, new fixtures, and lighting can result in energy savings and make getting ready for your day more enjoyable.
A bathroom renovation typically takes two to three weeks, according to HouseLogic, but that timeframe can extend much longer if you install custom fixtures or change the layout. That may not be a huge issue if you have more than one bathroom in the house.
Master Suite Addition
Average Cost: $123,420
Increase in Value: $69,807
Amount recouped: 56.6%
Many older homes don't have large master bedrooms. Adding a master bedroom suite with a walk-in closet and en suite bathroom can make your bedroom feel more like a luxe hotel. It may also contribute to family harmony if it means you're no longer competing for bathroom time with other members of your household.
The project timeframe depends on the size of the addition and whether you build up or build out, but according to Realtor.com, you can expect the project duration to take at least one to two months.
If you're considering investing in some updates to your home, look for projects that balance improving your quality of life while increasing the value of your home. After all, unless you're getting ready to sell your home, renovations with a high ROI aren't the best choice if they don't make you happier while living in your home.
Feeling more ambitious? If you're looking for projects that will return most or all of your investment, check out this article.