Remodeling Your Home – What is Too Much

Remodeling Your Home and When to Call it Quits on Investing in Your Home

By Mark J. Donovan

Historically one of the best ways to increase a home’s value is to invest in it in some way, such as a major home improvement or home remodeling project. Normally the money spent on remodeling your home pays for itself in as little as a few years. In a hot housing market you could actually make money on your freshly completed home remodeling or home improvement project. However, in a bad housing market, it could take many years to recoup the cost of a home remodeling project. In some cases, you may never recover your investment. So how much is too much when remodeling your home? That’s a hard question to often answer in many situations, as it depends on numerous factors. Summarized below are some things to think about before investing in a new home remodeling project.

Type of Home Remodeling Project Matters

First, what type of home remodeling project are you considering? Kitchen and bathroom remodels typically have a high return on investment and short recovery times. Similarly, you might be surprised to learn that landscaping has a high return on investment. Family room additions and sunrooms, on the other hand typically don’t have high ROIs.

Basement remodeling and attic conversion projects also can have reasonable return rates, if they are not overdone with significant custom features and materials, and do not require any exterior construction work.

What is the Surrounding Neighborhood Like?

Creating a massive home by adding on to it a large home addition can price the home outside the normalized price range for your neighborhood. Consequently it may be impossible to recoup your home remodeling investment, particularly if the project includes many custom features or uses high end materials.

The best bet is to talk to a local real estate professional prior to deciding on a large home remodeling or home addition project.

Remodeling your home, and as in this case, finishing a basement.

They can tell you what your home will be worth pre and post the proposed home remodeling project. You can then compare the cost of the home remodeling project to the new value of your home when the project is completed. Thus you can make an informed decision.

What Types of Construction Materials Do You Plan To Use?

Though the use of high end materials may make your home remodeling project have higher quality and look more fantastic, future prospective home buyers of the home may not value the materials as much as you do.

For example, putting in a marble shower stall or high end carpeting may not be attractive or appealing to a prospective home buyer. Thus, from their perspective they won’t value the home to the same price level that you do.

Smaller Home Remodeling and Repair Jobs

If you’re contemplating smaller home remodeling projects, they are well worth the investment. For example, replacing the old worn out carpeting with some moderately priced carpeting will return spades on increasing the value, and the prospects of selling your home.

New Home Construction Bid Sheet

Similarly, making small home repairs or painting the interior walls of your home cost very little and can make a huge difference in your house selling or not.

Pools are Sink Holes in Many Cases

If you live in a northern climate there is a high probability that installing a pool on your property will do little or nothing to the value of your home. As a matter of fact, it may lower the value of your home and/or prevent the sale of it. Many prospective home buyers simply don’t want to have to care for a pool, nor pay the cost of getting rid of it.

So consider all of these issues prior to investing in your home. Often you may come to the conclusion that you’ve invested enough already or that a particular project is not worth the investment and effort.

For help on building a home addition, see’s Home Addition Bid Sheets. Our Home Addition Bid Sheets provide you with the knowledge and information on how to plan a home addition project, and what to look for when hiring contractors. They also include detailed cost breakdown tables and spreadsheets for estimating your own new home addition building costs.

Related Information

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