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When remodeling or preparing to sell your home, getting the biggest return on your investment is not always easy to figure out. Deciding what project, budget and scope of work are all things that will determine what value or return you will get from the project.

Some projects make you more comfortable in your home but will not necessarily delivery the same monetary value that you put into the project. Other projects may make your home easier to sell and attract buyers but, depending on the scope and budget, you may not recoup the cost.

However, it may have been a necessary project to sell your home. Let’s look at a few cost vs. value examples in the St. Louis market from Remodeling magazine’s 2014 report.

When looking at cost vs. value of projects in your home, it is important to keep your emotions out of the analysis. The modern, upscale bathroom you have always wanted may not correlate to a big return on investment compared to a midrange remodeling project. For example, according to Remodel magazine’s 2014 report, if you were to complete an “upscale” bathroom remodel you would recoup around 57 percent of the project’s cost. But if the remodel cost landed in the “midrange,” your return would be closer to 62 percent. The return on investment of the projects can fluctuate from year to year. From 2013 to 2014, the return value of an upscale bathroom remodel went down, whereas the return value of a midrange bathroom remodel went up.

One of the best cost-to-value projects for your home, whether it is upscale or midrange, is installing modern vinyl windows. With a midrange job that costs around $10,500, you will add around $9,200 to your home’s value. This is a cost to value of 87.7 percent, which is among the highest included in the report. If you complete an upscale version of the same project — spending around $13,944 — it would add a value of $11,291 to your home. This cost to value would be 81 percent.

One thing to remember when tackling any project is excess is not always the best. It is your home, and you can always do what makes you happy — so long as you go into it knowing you may not get out what you put in.

Look at your home, as well as the market around you, and try and make an educated decision about what the project will cost and what it is actually worth to the value of your home.

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