People decide to remodel their La Plata and Archuleta County homes for a variety of reasons: to repurpose rooms once kids have moved on, to refresh kitchens and baths showing their vintage, or to keep in step with updates going on in the neighborhood.

Oh, and the pandemic.  Spending more time at home, family members moving in, and other changing needs have homeowners searching for remodeling contractors in Durango and Pagosa Springs more than ever.

There’s one more reason people plan to renovate a home: to put it on the market.  In this case, homeowners have a close eye on the cost vs. value of remodeling projects in Southwest Colorado.  The Home Builders Association can help!

With information in hand from Remodeling magazine and the experience of our members, here’s input on where you can expect the biggest bang for your remodeling buck:

Garage door replacement

This number one choice for good ROI may surprise you. New garage doors aren’t usually the first thing people think about when updating a house for sale.  But we can identify at least two reasons this move can return almost 94% of your outlay.

First, the cost of the job should not be that high—typically just a few thousand dollars.  Second, think about the expanse of exterior wall space garage doors occupy.  If your garage sports doors that are aging, boring, or otherwise don’t do justice to your home, consider swapping them out.  This option is especially important if you have two or more garage bays and if the doors are highly visible from the street.

Manufactured stone veneer

Another on the list of curb appeal factors is adding stone to the outside of your home. An article in Forbes magazine a few years ago noted the rise in popularity of stone veneers—and that’s especially true in Rocky Mountain areas where people want their houses to complement the surroundings.  Forbes also noted that in many cases the product is not installed properly, so it’s vital to find a Southwest Colorado masonry expert who can do the job right.  According to Remodeling, this project can return 92% of its cost in added home value.

Vinyl siding replacement

Third on the list of solid value for the cost is replacing vinyl siding. Vinyl that’s bulging, warped, or doesn’t lie flat is not just unsightly, it may signal problems underneath and cause buyers to worry.  Home inspectors will pick up on siding problems too.  New vinyl siding will yield an almost 75% return on your outlay.

If you’re wondering about using fiber-cement siding instead of vinyl, this option comes in fifth on Remodel magazine’s list for good ROI, chiefly because the product is higher in cost.

Minor kitchen remodel

A kitchen update concentrating mainly on cosmetics should return about 73% of the money spent to make it happen in a modest sized home. Remodeling magazine recommends new cabinet doors, drawer fronts, and hardware; replacement appliances; new countertops; a new sink and faucet; and updated flooring.  Finish the job by painting the walls, trim, and ceiling.

After these projects that top the ROI list come window replacements, both vinyl and wood, then deck additions.  Replacement roofs are next, numbering 10 and 11 on the list (asphalt shingles first, then metal).  As home sellers know, however, replacing a roof can be both pricey and key to selling a home.  Sometimes it’s necessary to accept about a 60% return on investment to attract a larger pool of buyers and earn top dollar for your home.

More expensive projects tend to be last on Remodel magazine’s list of high value renovations.  It’s easy to see why: these kinds of options can add tremendous appeal to a home on the market, but the cost is much greater than for smaller projects.  For example, adding an upscale master suite can run as high as $300,000 in cost and may return just half that figure in resale value.

This list can provide some general guidance, but don’t think of it as set in stone.  If you’re planning to sell a home in La Plata or Archuleta County, a remodel including upgraded windows or a more expansive, upscale deck might be just what the house needs to make it a real standout.

Here’s some good news: our member contractors can give you expert input that will help you make smart choices.  Browse our directory and contact one or two today.

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