6 of the Best ROI Home Improvements

Got your tax return? Want to make it count? Home improvements are an excellent way to turn dollars into a long-lasting investment.

In one of the hottest seller’s markets, the right home improvements are key to giving the value of your home a boost. So what are the best projects for a return on that investment?

We talked to experienced real estate agents actively working in today’s unique environment to find the answers. Without further ado, here are the six best ROI home improvement projects you can do.

1. Kitchen Remodel—45-86% ROI

The kitchen is the single most important feature on the lists of prospective homebuyers today. According to real estate pros, most buyers have no interest in remodeling the kitchen and are looking for a functional and beautiful kitchen that’s ready to go now. Additionally, many are looking for kitchens with eat-in functionality and could do without the dining room entirely.

According to the Remodeling 2023 Cost vs Value Report, minor kitchen remodels bring a return of 85.7% (national average), whereas major remodels have an ROI of 41.8%. If your kitchen is in pretty good shape, it might be in your best interest to do a minor update.

Replace cabinet doors instead of the entire thing. Get new appliances with energy efficiency ratings. Update countertops, sink, and faucet. Install new flooring. Give the walls, ceiling, and trims a fresh coat of paint. You’ll get the best return on your investment if you stick to a midrange price point for all your kitchen updates.

If your kitchen needs a full overhaul, be sure to include the latest perks available in every aspect of the space. Get cabinets with sliding shelves and pull out racks. Hand select gorgeous stone countertops. Include a feature backsplash that goes the full height of the wall. Consider built-in features like the refrigerator, cooktop and oven, and ventilation.

While you’re at it prep the space for smart elements with plenty of power outlets, charging stations, and connect-ability to the internet of things. Give some attention to permanent ambiance like lighting in the kitchen such as under cabinet lighting. You’ll get the most out of your investment if you opt for higher-end materials and appliances in a major renovation.

Want more details on what’s most desirable for buyers in a kitchen remodel? Read about it on our blog.

Outdoor living space with comfortable seating and mood lighting.

2. Outdoor Spaces—40-102%

Real estate agents have noticed an increase in the buyer’s desire for outdoor spaces. They attribute this to the pandemic and the need to be at home. With vacations canceled and outings postponed, people began to appreciate the staycation more. Not only that, but the backyard came to the forefront for family gatherings.

Pools, patios, outdoor kitchens, and brick pizza ovens are all great perks, but the projects that will bring you the best ROI leaned toward improvements on the exterior of the house. The Cost vs Value Report showed that adding manufactured stone veneer to the exterior of the home had a 102.3% return (national average). Siding replacement (94.7%), window replacement (68.5%), and roofing replacement (61.2%) also make great investments.

When it comes to improvements that aren’t related to the house directly, the addition of a deck returns over 60%. Wood decks have an ROI of 66% and composite materials have an ROI of 63%. The deck is the center of all backyard activities and is a great place to start a backyard overhaul.

Double garage doors in the carriage style.

Other Top ROI Home Improvements

3. Garage Door—103%

The one of the single best ROI home improvement projects is the replacement of the garage door. It has a 102.7% return on investment!

Opt for a stylish carriage house type door and go for the most durable options. You can reuse the motor if it’s in good condition but replace everything else for smooth operation and better insulation. Windows at the top of the panel are a good choice too.

4. Entry Door—101%

An updated entry door is probably one of the simplest, and best, changes you can make to your home, and it pays. Get a 20 gauge steel door complete with jambs, threshold, and stops for the full value. Replace the lockset too.

Dive a little deeper and go for a grand entry update. Though it sounds complicated, it really only means making the front entry bigger and fancier. Fiberglass is your best bet here and opt for a style with double sidelights and half-glass decoration. Adding or freshening up trims is a must as well.

Large owner's suite bathroom in stylish black and white.

5. Bathroom Remodel—27-67%

A midrange bathroom remodel results in a 66.7% ROI. Be sure to replace all fixtures, update the floor, and give attention to the backsplash. Replace the bathtub and toilet with simple, standard models. Opt for a solid-surface vanity with an integrated sink.

A popular bathroom update that brings a 57% return is the universal design bathroom. Universal design equals accessibility. Though it was originally developed for wheelchair accessibility, it is a design that offers greater flexibility to all kinds of people with all kinds of needs. It is especially attractive for those who wish to age in place.

Higher-end bathroom remodels garner a 54% ROI. Make these bathrooms bigger and more luxe. Spring for a spa-inspired shower with body spray. Install a wet room complete with freestanding bathtub. Go with the double vanity. Compartmentalize the toilet. Get in-floor heating.

6. Owner Suite—23-30%

Adding a full suite—with large bedroom and bathroom included—as the main bedroom pays off to the tune of 30% ROI for a midrange remodel. Include a walk-in closet, luxurious bathroom with freestanding tub and separate shower, and carpeted bedroom. Add luxurious lighting to enhance the effect.

An upscale suite addition returns at 22.7%. To the walk-in closet add full length mirrors and linen closets. Go all out on the details with built-in storage, trims, a fireplace, and French doors. Add some pampering perks like a coffee station or hospitality bar.

Make the most of your investments by choosing the best ROI home improvement projects. Want more ideas? Check out these DIY projects.

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