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Looking to remodel? 10 high-rate return projects

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Posted: Friday, March 15, 2013 8:18 am

Here are 10 remodeling projects that have the highest rate of return. The cost of remodeling is dropping, to the delight of homeowners who can afford to make improvements to their homes. The California Association of Realtors says these 10 projects have the highest return on investment, and they all focus on maintenance, replacements and enhancing curb appeal. Remodeling costs have dropped 10% to 15% in the past five years. With these costs plummeting so has the return on every dollar spent.

This sounds like great news for consumers, but with homes selling for higher and higher, the amount you recoup from a project when you sell the home could go up as well.

In the past six years, the return on a remodeling investment has steadily declined. Payback peaked in 2005, when home sellers earned back more than 86.7% of money they spent on remodeling projects. That return has been eroding steadily, hitting a low of 57.7% in 2011. Despite the generally low payback, there are a few star performers. Replacement projects are really strong because they’re cheap and they make the house look good immediately. If you get new windows, new siding and replace the front door, the house looks great. It sells faster and for more money.

You’ll notice that these are not ambitious, vanity jobs. All are projects that replace worn or aged home components, bring parts of the home up-to-date or add living space without expanding the home’s footprint. If you’d like to find out what other items might be helpful to sell your home for more other than remodeling call your local Realtor. An area expert should be able to easily give you at least 3 suggestions to help improve your homes appearance without breaking your bank or budget. These helpful hints can help you to sell your home quicker and for more money.

Sheri Aguilar is the president of the Lodi Association of Realtors and can be reached at Sheri@YourLocalAOR.com

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