If you’re wondering what home remodeling projects make the most financial sense when it comes to the value of your Philadelphia-area home, we’ve got the answers.

According to the Remodeling’s 2017 Cost vs. Value Report, in the Philly metro area, replacing your garage door could actually make a little money if you sell your home — that project recouped 101.1% of costs on resale. It was followed by the even-more decidedly not-sexy but nonetheless important task of properly insulating your attic with fiberglass insulation, which reaps a 101% benefit on resale.


While Remodeling’s recouped cost calculation is based on home resale prices, it’s great information to have at your fingertips even if you’re not planning to sell soon. Your home isn’t just a place you live, it’s the largest financial investment many of us make.


Whether you’re looking to sell soon or not, the important take-away is that no home improvement project will lose money

The Remodeling report separates projects into mid-range and upscale segments.

Mid-Range Projects

After insulating your attic, the study says the top projects you’ll recoup costs on in our area are:

  • Replacing vinyl siding on the front of your house with manufactured stone veneer
  • A minor kitchen remodel
  • Replacing your entry door with steel or fiberglass
  • Siding replacement
  • Replacing your deck
  • Replacing your garage door

You’ll notice these projects (except the minor kitchen remodel) amp up curb appeal. They’re not high-ticket items, either. The kitchen remodel project in the study is more like a refresh — refacing cabinets, replacing appliances with more energy-efficient models, and installing laminate counter tops and a mid-priced sink and faucet. The space and all utilities remain the same.

Upscale Projects

Following garage door replacement, replacing your existing windows with new wood windows led the field. Other top projects:

  • Vinyl window replacement
  • Universal design bathroom remodel to make it easier for those with disabilities to have independence (either now or in the future).
  • Grand entrance — a makeover of the front entryway exterior, including electrical work.
  • Major kitchen remodel — new top-of-the-line cabinetry, stone counter tops and imported tile or glass backsplashes, commercial grade cook top and vent, and other high-end touches. Includes new electrical work.
  • A deck addition of composite material.

It’s good to keep in mind that this study relies on data from real estate pros — not remodeling experts — with the intent of telling homeowners what projects will get them the most money back when selling. As a result, lower-cost fixes that affect curb appeal gain favor. But whether you’re looking to sell soon or not, the important take-away is that no home improvement project will lose money! So whether you remodel or replace to sell, or you do it to love where you live even more, you’ve made a good investment of your time and money.

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