Thinking about doing some updates on your home but not sure how much it might cost and if it will be cost effective? Remodeling's annual Cost vs. Value reports give the average cost of 35 most popular projects in the US by geographic area… as well as an estimate of how much of the cost you might recoup when you sell.

Two projects on the 2015 list for the Minneapolis-St. Paul area showed an almost unheard of return of more than the entire cost of the project… wood window replacement (105.8%) and steel entry door replacement ((104.6%)!

Replacing your front door has always been a good investment when getting ready to sell because of the relatively low cost and first impression impact on potential buyers. But the wood windows surprised me… in 2014 they showed a recouped value of 78.2%, that's an increase of 27.6%!

As I think about it in working with buyers, however, windows can be a big hot spot. It is a significant investment, and with today's emphasis on energy efficiency new windows can be a big deal with buyers… and they can get excited when they see real wood instead of the more popular vinyl replacement windows. If you have been thinking about window replacement this could be a reason to do it now rather than later, so you can also reap the benefits before you sell.

It is rare to get your whole investment back on a remodeling project, which is why it is a good idea to do big projects for your own enjoyment rather than just for resale. But even if you don't get a dollar-for-dollar return on updates they can make you home more desirable to buyers so it will sell more quickly, maybe even in multiple offers. Sometimes the reason for doing updates before selling isn't because of a higher price… it is to get the property sold… period!


According to Huffington Post, the most common remodeling job projects in the US are in the bathroom, followed by the kitchen… both projects that have a big impact on buyers!  Another project that saw a big increase in the percent recouped was roof replacement… another buyer hot spot. In 2015 the average amount recouped in the Twin Cities market jumped up to 72.8%… up from 53.8% in 2014.

See average job costs and percent of cost recouped at time of sale for 35 top projects below, ranked by percentage of cost recouped.

MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL Remodeling ROI – Cost vs Value 2015

  1. Window replacement (wood) – $12,871 – 105.8%
  2. Entry door replacement (steel) – $1,414 – 104.6%
  3. UPSCALE siding replacement (fiber-cement) – $17,180 – 79.6%
  4. Attic bedroom – $62,712 – 75.9%
  5. Siding replacement (vinyl) – $14,713 – 74.9%
  6. Minor kitchen remodel – $22,201 – 74.9%
  7. Entry door replacement (fiberglass) – $3,163 – 74.7%
  8. UPSCALE siding replacement (foam-backed vinyl) – $17,903 – 73.7%
  9. Deck addition (wood) – $12,090 – 73.2%
  10. Roofing replacement – $25,646 – 72.8%
  11. UPSCALE garage door replacement – $3,147 – 71.6%
  12. UPSCALE window replacement (wood) – $19,139 – 71.5%
  13. Window replacement (vinyl) – $11,846 – 71.3%
  14. UPSCALE window replacement (vinyl) – $15,549 – 70.2%
  15. Basement remodel – $77,878 – 70.1%
  16. Garage door replacement – $1,791 – 69.2%
  17. Major kitchen remodel – $64,138 – 68.0%
  18. Deck addition (composite) – $17,896 – 66.2%
  19. Bathroom remodel – $20,338 – 65.5%
  20. Two-story addition – $188,483 – 64.9%
  21. Master suite addition – $125,511 – 63.0%
  22. Family room addition – $97,328 – 62.5%
  23. UPSCALE grand entrance – $8,176 – 60.2%
  24. UPSCALE roofing replacement – $48,659 – 59.6%
  25. UPSCALE major kitchen remodel – $125,657 – 58.3%
  26. UPSCALE bathroom remodel – $60,049 – 58.3%
  27. UPSCALE master suite addition – $260,849 – 56.9%
  28. UPSCALE garage addition – $99,190 – 54.5%
  29. Garage addition – $60,680 – 54.4%
  30. UPSCALE bathroom addition – $84,631 – 54.1%
  31. Bathroom addition – $47,472 – 54.0%
  32. UPSCALE deck addition (composite) – $41,337 – 53.5%
  33. Sunroom addition – $86,046 – 50.6%
  34. Back-up power generator – $13,315 – 50.2%
  35. Home office remodel – $33,741 – 45.2%

This report is for the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. See the complete 2015 Cost vs Value report for the whole country, regionally, or by city… with records going back to 2002.

Sharlene Hensrud, RE/MAX Results -  Twin Cities Seller's Realtor

The HomesMSP Team - SharleneJohnAngela



About Sharlene Hensrud

I love what I do! Highly insightful, analytical and creative, there is nothing I love more than helping you find the right solution for your real estate transition. My mission is to serve my clients with honesty and integrity, exceeding their expectations in service and support… and to help others by donating a portion of every transaction to Habitat for Humanity.

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