Renovating Your Home Is a Labor of Love

  • By Don Halling
  • 08 Aug, 2017

7 Home Remodeling Projects With Top-Dollar Returns

Not all home improvements are created equal. These will reward you the most when it comes time to sell.

Your home is in the perfect location, came at the perfect price, with the perfect lot. (Yay southern exposure!)

But the home itself? Perfect isn’t the adjective you’d use. But you knew that moving in, and now you’re ready to start making it just right.

But where to begin? How about with data? Data is that friend who tells you like it really is.

Because while any home improvement  that brings you joy is priceless, not all add as much home equity as you might expect.

The National Association of REALTORS®’ 2015 Remodeling Impact Report  and 2016 Remodeling Impact Report: Outdoor Features  (full disclosure: NAR is a sponsor of HouseLogic.) have tons of data on how much improvements cost — and how much of those costs you can recoup.

Here are the best seven home remodeling projects with equity-building might:

#1 Upgraded Landscaping

This one might be a bit of a surprise. (Maybe you expected a major kitchen reno  to top the list.)

But if your yard is one of your home’s imperfect parts, a little color and a touch of hardscaping can make a huge difference to your curb appeal, which is a great immediate equity-booster.

What does a basic landscaping upgrade include?

  • Flowering shrubs
  • A 15-foot-tall deciduous tree
  • A flagstone walkway
  • Two 6-by-2 stone planters
  • Fresh mulch

The cost: $4,750

The return: 105% at $5,000

Related:  5 Awesomely Easy Landscaping Projects

#2 New Roof

If you find yourself sprinting for the buckets when it starts to sprinkle, getting a new roof should be your No. 1 to-do. Measuring rainfall from the indoors isn’t cool.

The cost: $7,600

The return: 105% at $8,000

Considering it’s what’s between you and the elements, it’s a no-brainer.

Not sure if you need a new roof? Signs you might include:

  • Shingles are missing, curling up, or covered in moss.
  • Gritty bits from the asphalt shingles are coming out the downspout.
  • The sun’s shining through your attic.
  • You notice stains on ceilings and walls.
  • Your energy bill is sky high.

#3 Hardwood Floors

You flip on the TV to see that your fave home reno-ing duo is it at again, flipping a ranch that’s stuck in the ‘80s.

They make it to the living room, pull back the dingy carpet to reveal hardwood floors in great condition. They’re psyched — and for good reason.

Hardwood floors are a timeless classic. Refinishing is a no-brainer. Neither will you regret adding new hardwood floors if you have none.

The cost to refinish: $2,500

The return: 100% at $2,500

The cost to buy new: $5,500

The return: 91% at $5,000

Related:  Should You Refinish Hardwood Floors Yourself?

#4 Patio or Deck

If your home is your castle, your yard is your kingdom. After giving your yard a much-needed overhaul, you need a place to watch over you handiwork. How about that deck or patio you’ve been dreaming of?

The cost of a patio: $6,400

The return: 102% at $6525

The cost of a deck: $9,450

The return: 106% at $10,000

#5 Insulation

Insulation is tucked out of sight, so it’s often out of mind — that is, until you’re forced to wear your parka indoors because it’s sooo darn cold.

The cost: $2,100

The return: 95% at $2,000 plus the added savings on heating and cooling costs

#6 New Garage Door

No surprise that a garage door replacement project made it onto this #winning list — a new garage door provides a big boost for your home’s curb appeal at a relatively modest cost.

The cost: $2,300 (for a two-door)

The return: 87% at $2,000

There are options galore, too. A host of factory-finish colors, wood-look embossed steel, and glass window insets are just some of the possibilities that’ll give your doors bankable personality.

#7 Vinyl Siding

In any color! And never paint again.

Those are two of the three benefits of vinyl siding. The third, of course, is your home’s value.

But if long-time homeowners look at you funny when you mention vinyl siding, just tell them that today’s vinyl is way better than what they remember because of fade-resistant finishes and transferable lifetime warranties.

The cost: $12,000

The return: 83% at $10,000

Want fiber-cement siding instead? It also shows a strong payback of 79%. Although it’s the pricier option — you’ll spend $19,100 — it has one thing vinyl still lacks — the perception of quality.

And quality matters. In a survey from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), “quality” was the one of the most important traits that home buyers focused on when house hunting.

Welcome to Integrity Home Solution's blog. This is where you can find jobs completed, deals, and interesting home improvement articles.

By Don Halling 18 Oct, 2017

The Villa Les Cèdres, a 187-year-old mansion now for sale along the coast of Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat in the South of France and it's fancy, to say the least.

Bloomberg   reports that house is a 18,000-square-foot, 14-bedroom mansion on 35 acres and is gilded and gorgeous.

It was built in 1830 and originally purchased in 1850 and was a working olive tree farm owned by the mayor of Villefranche-sur-Mer. From there, it was sold by the mayor's family to the Belgian King Leopold II in 1904, who, as Bloomberg explains, was "made stupendously rich by his exploitation of mineral resources and rubber trees in the Congo Free State (now the Democratic Republic of Congo)."

After Leopold's death, Villa Les Cèdres was acquired by the Marnier-Lapostolle in 1924. They're best known for making the delicious Grand Marnier liqueur, a blend of cognac and triple sec, and loved to cultivate exotic plants on the ground. Ooh la la. 

It was in the family until 2016, when Davide Campari-Milano SpA acquired Société des Produits Marnier Lapostolle (SPML), Grand Marnier's parent company.

It is listed at €350 million ($410 million), and is being handled by a steering committee of five family members from Marnier and Di Fede.

By Don Halling 17 Oct, 2017
From warm bedding to comfy pillows, these bedroom decorating ideas  will give you an excuse to stay in bed all day.

Go Vintage

Add reclaimed and antique decor accents, like the sign, lamps, and chests in this Georgia lake house , for undone, rustic elegance.

By Don Halling 17 Oct, 2017
By Don Halling 16 Oct, 2017

Fountain in a Tub

Fountains are a popular addition to any garden . This informal design marries smooth stones and an electric-blue gazing ball in a galvanized wash tub. An inexpensive submersible pump powers the flow of water.

By Don Halling 16 Oct, 2017

Pumpkin Planter

Pumpkins in various colors and sizes make beautiful outdoor fall decorations when piled in a planter and placed on your porch. If your planter is too big for your pumpkins, use a block of florist's foam to keep your gourds at the top.

By Don Halling 13 Oct, 2017
Powder rooms are the jewel boxes of home design. They’re compact, typically seen by guests and ready candidates for a little design boldness. Here, shown in reverse order, are the 10 most popular powder room photos uploaded from July through September, as measured by the number of people who saved them to their Houzz ideabooks.

Ombré  Mosaic

The ombré trend isn’t loved by everyone, but this tile wall might quell even its toughest critics. Fading from dark gray to nearly white, it connects the floors and the walls while opening up the space in an elegant, subtle way.

Vessel sink: Papillon, Stone Forest; see more

9. Pocket Door

The pocket door in this monochromatic space saves space, adds color and also enables multiple people to use the powder room at once.

Pocket Door Ideas You’re Going to Love

8. Mirrored Paneling

There’s a lot to admire about this classic powder room, from the parquet wood floors to the gold fixtures and floor-to-ceiling wood paneling.

The designer’s attention to natural light especially enhances the space. Mirrors installed around the perimeter not only brighten the room by reflecting light, but also create the illusion of more windows.

Read more about this home’s renovation

7. Inky Walls

The dark blue walls in this powder room envelop the space in drama and sophistication.

For anyone who wants to test out a bold wall color, the powder room is a great place to start, as it’s small and not that frequently used.

9 Dark Wall Colors to Suit Your Mood

6. Backlit Mirror

Mirrors and lighting are bathroom essentials, but compact powder rooms with awkward angles can make it challenging to comfortably fit both.

This warm, contemporary powder room accomplishes both with a streamlined backlit mirror, which pairs well with the warm wood floors, white walls and black counters.

To See the other 4:

By Don Halling 13 Oct, 2017
Neutral schemes cleaned up the top spots this summer when it came to most-saved laundry room images. But just because they lack bold colors doesn’t mean they lack bright ideas. In fact, these laundry rooms fold a lot of different storage and work space solutions into their layouts.

Leave me hanging.  Linger on this photo and you’ll eventually see all the different storage options the design team packed into the laundry room, including hanging rods in the corners to the sides of the washer and dryer.

By Don Halling 12 Oct, 2017
Home renovations are some of the best investments one can make. They increase a home's value and, in the long run, put money in the bank.
By Don Halling 12 Oct, 2017
A once-a-year massive spring clean may not be everyone’s cup of tea. If you’d rather break up the work, here are some ideas for sprucing up your space this fall. From updating your book collection to cleaning up outdoors, pick and choose from these eight to-dos to create a fall cleaning plan that works for you.

Launder slipcovers and curtains. Check the care instructions carefully, especially if you’ve never laundered these items before. Shrunken slipcovers and short curtains are a major bummer! If you’re not sure, check with the manufacturer, or just send them to the dry cleaners.

Deep-clean kids’ rooms.
Get the kids in on the project by assigning jobs that seem sort of fun — like dusting the floor with dusting mitts on their feet, or spritzing surfaces with a gentle cleaning spray. Move or clean under furniture where the biggest dust bunnies hide, and tidy up toys and clothes.

Wipe down kitchen cupboards, walls and appliances. Grease from cooking can build up on kitchen surfaces over time. Using a warm, wrung-out microfiber cloth, wipe down everything top to bottom. To avoid damaging finishes, start with just water on the cloth and add gentle cleanser if needed.

Edit your book collection. The fall and winter months are prime time for curling up with a good book. Make some room on your shelves for new titles by weeding out books you didn’t love or know you won’t pick up again. While you’re at it, use a duster to swipe the shelves and spines.

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