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Home Improvement Guide 2007
First things first
Before launching into any home improvement project you should carefully consider your motivations and goals.
First things first
Top 10 remodeling projects for resale
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Recouping at least 100 percent of costs is typical in these 9 cities.

9 cities that can expect to recoup costs:
Birmingham, Ala.Knoxville, Tenn.
Albany, N.Y.Albuquerque, N.M.
Providence, R.I.Los Angeles, Calif.
San Francisco, Calif. Miami, Fla.
Orlando, Fla.

Carey sees this project type as a "good alternative if you can't afford wood frames." And Bennett points out that even nice vinyl windows aren't as good as aluminum-clad wood windows; in his experience, fiberglass windows would be more upscale than vinyl. However, he adds, it's certainly important from the perspective of prospective buyers that a homeowner replace windows that need to work or look better.

7. Mid-range window replacement -- vinyl
For a $10,160 project, homeowners could expect to recoup 83.7 percent as a national average. The project entails replacement of 10 existing 3-by-5-foot double-hung windows with insulated vinyl replacement windows, and wrapping existing exterior trim to match.

Homeowners should be able to get 100 percent of the investment back at resale for this project in these five cities.

5 citites that can expect to recoup costs:
CincinnatiAlbany, N.Y.
Los AngelesSan Francisco
Miami

8. Two-story addition
Homeowners completing a $105,297 project consisting of a first-floor family room and a second-floor bedroom with full bath in a 24-by-16-foot two-story wing over a crawlspace could expect to get back 83.2 percent at resale nationwide. But in these market areas one could expect to recoup 100 percent or more of this investment.

Homeowners should be able to get 100 percent of the investment back at resale for this project in these six cities.

6 cities that can expect to recoup costs:
Boise, IdahoLos Angeles
San FranciscoSeattle
MiamiWashington, D.C.

According to Carey, additions that don't look like additions are what will get homeowners' money back. An addition that "sticks out like a sore thumb" is what to avoid.

-- Posted: April 4, 2007
 
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