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Top five renovation bets

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis February 18, 2014 07:48 AM

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Thinking of fixing up your home? This spring may finally be the time to strap on the tool belt and get to work.

Or if you like me, with minimal handyman skills, stick to the painting and demolition and hire a capable contractor.

The payback for home renovation projects plunged after the real estate bubble collapsed and Great Recession hit.

But after nearly a decade of tough times, renovation values are on the rise again, reports Hanley Wood, publisher of Remodeling magazine, in its annual Cost Vs. Value Report.

The payback for the 35 projects tracked in the report, from replacing the garage door to a complete kitchen overhaul, rose 9 percent in 2013.

And 15 projects posted even higher gains, from 10 to nearly 30 percent.

Here are the top five renovation projects for the Boston area based on your payback when it comes time to sell.

If there is any theme here, it's that a little extra space and curbside appeal mean a lot to Boston area buyers.

Without further ado, the winners are:

Attic bedroom: Putting in an attic bedroom is the best investment you can make. Yes, it's not cheap at $60,102, but you can expect to reap a modest, 7 percent gain.
Entry door: Putting in a snazzy new front door is not only relatively inexpensive - just under $1,300 - but you can expect to get back nearly 93 percent of the cost.
Siding: New siding is another way you can spruce up the curbside appeal of your house. While it will cost you on average $13,231, the payback is over 94 percent of the cost.
Minor kitchen remodel: It will cost you $22,175, but you will get back at least 87 percent of that when you sell, making it one of the better renovation investments you can make.
Garage door: Another quick aesthetic important, the payback on the $1,767 outlay is over 84 percent of the cost.

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About boston real estate now
Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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