December, 2001


Source: Detroit Free Press Research 

It pays to renovate. Investments in updates can help sell your property sooner rather than later. 


REMODELED KITCHEN: A kitchen update can reward a Seller with a sizable payback. Just remember..splurging on fancy finishing materials or sophisticated equipment may cut your profit. Keep it simple. RETURN: 150% 

FIREPLACE: Especially if it's energy-efficient, such as a gas-powered model, a fireplace hold the promise of cozy family gatherings around the warmth of the hearth. RETURN: 100% 

ROOM ADDITION: For the most attractive return on your investment, the added room should be a family room OR a third bedroom. RETURN: 80% 

MASTER SUITE: To keep costs down, try to find extra space by combining existing rooms and spaces. Heavy structural work entailed by adding space diminishes your return. RETURN: 70%  

EXTERIOR PAINT: Sprucing up tired siding, trim, etc. can take years off the look of an older house. RETURN: 50% 

LAWN & GARDEN: A healthy, green lawn and a modest but colorful flower bed will entice potential Buyers. The few hundred dollars invested may yield several thousand in profit. RETURN: 100% 
 SECOND BATH: All it takes is a simple 5 ft. X 9 ft. second bath to make mornings more civilized for most families. This is a "must-have" for today's Buyer's. RETURN: 90% 

REMODELED BATH: A Master bath is on many Buyer's wish lists. If you have only one bath, install two sinks OR a double vanity mirror to handle the morning crowd. RETURN: 60-80% 

DECK: Outdoor living space is a desirable asset no matter what the locale. Low-maintenance decking material leaves lots of leisure time, too. RETURN: 70% 

FINISHED ATTIC: You can expect to recoup more of your investment if you make sure the renovation does not detract from the aesthetics of your home. It is especially attractive as an extra bedroom in a small house. RETURN: 50% 


Broker Dennis Nabor with Red Carpet Keim Macomb in Clinton Township, Mich.: "The best improvements before selling are those that update, freshen and sharpen the property's image and should be visible to prospective Buyers. If it's a choice between spending $600.00 to add insulation to the attic OR $600.00 to paint and paper a bathroom and add a new vanity top and faucet, the bathroom improvements are a better investment."


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This web page was updated on 12/02/2001