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Remodeling? Which Projects Have the Best Value

Are you planning to remodel your home?  Thinking of selling and want to make sure any remodel efforts will give you the biggest bang for the buck?  This topic was the focus of the eLocal’s 4th question in their Blog Off Series.

Here’s my take on this topic:

You might think that the Internet Electrician would limit his comments to anything electrical or lighting related, but I’m going to answer this from the right side of my brain.

I have spent a lot of time in the last two  years looking for homes, both for my wife and me, and for several members of my family and friends. From talking to realtors, and from seeing the reaction of various house shoppers, including myself, I think the initial reaction is the most important, and thus small scale, inexpensive exterior projects will return you the most resale value for your investment.

Siding repairs and replacements, repairing exterior stucco or plaster and a fresh coat of paint, new exterior door, and clean up the front yard for that all important first impression.

It is said that about 80% of the top 10 projects that will recoup the cost involve the exterior of the home, and only require an investment in the $10-$15K range.  If replacing the exterior siding material, ensure that foam backed product with a good insulation value is used not only to keep with the green theme, but it only makes sense to save some wasted energy.

Moving to the inside of the home, attic bedroom or bonus room additions, a spa-like master bathroom, and a large living area that incorporates the kitchen are appealing to most. Baby-boomers are generally looking only at 1-story bungalows as well. Nobody wants to waste valuable energy climbing stairs when those calories could be burnt off on the golf course! A fresh coat of paint inside still is, and always has been the #1 thing to do as far as a bang for the buck.

In the back yard, remodeling or building a deck, providing sunrooms or screen rooms, and generally making the outdoor living space comfortable, especially in warmer climates. The addition of a pool or spa is the worst as far as a return on investment, but if you can find a home that has a pool, the amount you will pay above a comparable home without is only a fraction of the cost of installation if you want to add one later.


What did the other experts have to say?  Read eLocal’s blog – click here to view it. Feel free to share your thoughts on this.  What home reno projects have you completed recently?

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  • mike

    do you have to use 12/2  with outlets or can you use 14/2, in a living room, bedroom, and do you have to keep the lighting seperate from the outlets?


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