Top 10 Tips to Improve Your Home’s Value | Ep. 141

Double hung vinyl windows
Replacing vinyl windows recoups 68% of the cost to replace your old windows. (AdobeStock ©tamas)

Remodeling Magazine has released its annual list of the top 10 home improvements to get the best return on your investment.

If you missed this issue, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered with an overview of these projects that will make your home more enjoyable and increase its resale value.

Here they are, in order of importance:

Chelsea's new garage doors

1. Garage Door Replacement

Surprisingly enough, replacing your garage door can give you the best ROI on your home. Not only does it boost your home’s appearance, but it also helps homeowners who are looking to sell their house at a higher listing price. And, you’ll recoup 98% of the cost!

2. Adding Manufactured Stone Veneer to Exterior

Over the years, competition and manufacturing of this material have become more reasonable. The price is gradually coming down and its overall appearance is attractive to homeowners. Because it’s manufactured, the price of it goes up quicker — and you’ll recoup 92% of the cost.

“Today’s Homeowner” co-host Chelsea Lipford Wolf's renovated kitchen in Mobile, Alabama, featuring Merillat cabinets

3. Minor Kitchen Remodel

Have you ever heard the saying, “Kitchens sell houses?” Well, it’s not too far from the truth. A minor kitchen remodel roughly costs over $26,000, but you will recoup over 72% of the cost in resale!

Wood deck on a sunny day

4. Wood Decking

Wanting to expand on your home’s living space without breaking your bank can be challenging. The average wood deck costs about $16,000 which is almost $6,000 less than a composite deck.

Vinyl siding, seen close up
(©Алексей Власов, Adobe Stock Photos)

5. Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is easy to install and can improve the overall appearance of a home. Its low cost, low maintenance and versatility make it popular among homeowners. Some of the newer models even have insulation built into them!

6. Steel Entry Door Replacement

Replacing an entry door boosts curb appeal and has an even better ROI. Steel is both stylish and energy-efficient and will save you money in utility costs. Best of all, you’ll recoup around 65% for a steel entry door.

Chelsea's new windows

7. Vinyl Window Replacement

Compared to alternatives, vinyl window replacements are the better choice for ROI. It costs a little less than $20,000 to replace vinyl windows on an average-sized house. You’ll recoup about 68% of the cost.

8. Fiber Cement Siding

The type of siding on your home has a significant effect on the home’s value. The average cost of this project is about $19,000 and the resale cost will get you roughly $13,000 more — a recoup value of 69%!

If fiber cement siding is painted properly, it can last up to 10 to 12 years because it’s low maintenance, not no maintenance.

A homemade wooden window box installed under a window on a brick home

9. Wood Window Replacement

While wood windows are beautiful, their maintenance costs quickly add up. Not only do new windows make your home look great but it saves you money on your energy bill as well!

Fiberon composite deck after home makeover

10. Adding a Composite Deck

A homeowner can expect to recoup about 65% of the cost of building a new composite deck. The overall cost of building a deck is relatively affordable and it’s a great way to extend your home’s living space to the outdoors.

Listen to the Today’s Homeowner Podcast to learn more about these topics, too:

  • What to do when a section of your yard sinks
  • Heated flooring options to improve your home’s comfort
  • Planning the build for an outdoor deck

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Simple Solutions

Fast Fix for Damaged Door Track — The metal track that forms the threshold of a sliding patio door takes quite a beating, which eventually renders it bent and crooked.

All those battle scars not only leave the track looking ugly, but they also can cause the door to ride roughly and hop off the track.

To repair the damage, lay a wooden block into the track, place one foot on top, and then use a hammer to pound out any bends, bumps and wrinkles. 

Roof Runoff Remedy — The shingles along the lower edge of a roof should extend beyond the fascia board by about 1/2 inch so that rain and melted snow drain into the gutter.

If this slight overhang is too short, water will drip behind the gutter, leading to rotted fascia, stained siding and even soil erosion and a flooded basement.

To fix the problem, install sheet-metal drip-edge flashing, which is also called drip cap. Slip the wide, flat flange of the flashing under the first course of roof shingles, making sure its outer edge extends beyond the back of the gutter.

If it doesn’t, pull the drip edge out slightly from under the shingles. Secure the drip edge with a bead of roofing cement applied to the top of the flashing.

If necessary, you can secure the ends of the flashing with short roofing nails; just be sure they’re positioned high up under the shingles.

Question of the Week

Q: Several years ago, I removed the paper that covered up the insulation on my basement ceiling.

I was told that visible insulation can give off fine particles that can be hazardous to my health — is this true?

If so, what should I use to cover up the insulation — and should I be concerned that the insulation is damp from over the years it’s been uncovered?

A: There shouldn’t be a problem with the existing insulation. The minute you took the paper down, you would’ve known if there was a moisture problem because you would see or smell mold or mildew.

But, we definitely recommend covering it up so the raw insulation is not visible. HouseWrap is easy to use and perfect for this solution!

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