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Remodeling Projects That Might Hurt Your Home Sale

Major remodeling projects aren't always good investments.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Zillow

    You'd think that a home renovation might help you sell your home, right? A piece in The Wall Street Journal reports that the opposite can be true. 

    Certain improvement projects that are lower cost, like replacing a home's siding with fiber-cement panels or replacing the garage door, will likely get the seller her money back. It's the major projects that recoup less than 60 percent of their cost. The lowest return per dollar spent comes with a master suite addition-- that earns back only 52.1 percent of the cost.  
    "People don't appreciate the things they can't see. When they walk through a home, it's all about the visual impact," says Andrew Shore, president of Sea Pointe Construction, a design/build remodeling firm in Irvine. So while big master bedrooms, gourmet kitchens, and spa-like baths might impress your guests, they might not be worth the time and money you've put into them. 
    Renovations can pay off. The article points to a seller near Seattle who spent between $35,000 and $40,000 renovating the kitchen in her Tustin, California home, putting in a larger window, quartz countertops, hardwood floors, and alter-wood cabinets. Less than one week after the home went on the market, it sold for $690,000, just $9,000 below the asking price.
    It can happen.