Have you ever watched the hit show Bang for your Buck on HGTV?

During a “Bang for your Buck” episode, experts pick apart three homeowners, in the same city, whom have remodeled the same living space in their house. The experts determine which renovation choices each homeowner made brought the most “bang” out of their investment dollars. Kinda scary, right? But also its extremely interesting to watch which renovation choices raised the value of the home the most, and which didn’t make a bit of difference.

Choosing what to do and what not to do in a kitchen remodel can be daunting, overwhelming and even bring a project to a screeching halt. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had a remodel wizard that told us exactly our invested dollar return?  It’s not only hard to decide what we want personally, but it’s difficult to decipher which choices are going to give us the largest return on investment.

Here at kitchenCRATE, we love sharing what we learn about the remodeling industry from both research and personal experience.  We want to help you make sound decision when it comes to your kitchen remodel. In light of this, we did some good ol’ fashion investigative work to see how a kitchen remodel effects a homes value.  You might be surprised by what we found from a few major remodeling resources.

The Facts From The Heavy Hitters:

hgtv-logo

According to HGTV, a resource for those hunting for that perfect remodel solution, a homeowner should see 60-98.5% return of cost spent on a kitchen remodel.  To the average person that seems like quite a large margin.  Luckily, HGTV helps remove the guess work out of return on investment. Their major finding?  A minor kitchen remodel brings an exceptional return on dollars invested in your home.

Here are the details:

Minor Kitchen Remodel

Average return at resale: 98.5 percent

  • A minor kitchen remodel averages $14,913 and brings in $14,691 at resale, a recoup rate of 98.5%. Go for the minor remodel when your kitchen needs a cosmetic update and not a drastically different floor plan.
  • A $15,000 kitchen update covers 30 feet of re-facing for cabinets and drawers, a new wall oven, cooktop, sink and fixtures, laminate countertops and resilient flooring.
  • Put recessed lights 3’ to 5’ apart on center and 18″ from cabinets to light the countertops. Running the lights between two joists is easier than running through the joists.
  • If your home is worth more than $500,000 go with stone or trendy glass countertops.
  • Cover the old vinyl with floor leveler so the pattern doesn’t bleed through. You can’t put a second layer of vinyl on if the subfloor is below-grade concrete.
  • Brighten up the kitchen by giving your old wood cabinets new character. Just sand and paint — it’s a whole lot less expensive than buying new ones.  (And exactly what we do here at kitchenCRATE…)
  • Don’t forget window treatments. Changing drapes and window molding is an inexpensive way to add decorator detail.

Resource: HGTV: Top 15 Home Updates

 

zillow-logo

Zillow, the online real estate monster, teamed with Remodel Magazine and their annual “Cost vs Value Report.”  Zillow’s analysis is based upon several different categories: minor kitchen remodels, major kitchen remodel (mid-range) and major kitchen remodel (upscale).

Here’s what they say:

Minor Kitchen Remodel  

In a functional, but dated, 200-square-foot kitchen with 30 linear feet of cabinetry and countertops, leave cabinet boxes in place but replace fronts with new raised-panel wood doors and drawers, including new hardware. Replace wall oven and cooktop with new energy-efficient models. Replace laminate countertops; install mid-priced sink and faucet. Repaint trim, add wall covering, and remove and replace resilient flooring.  98.2% Return

Major Kitchen Remodel (Mid-range)

Update an outmoded 200-square-foot kitchen with a functional layout of 30 linear feet of semi-custom wood cabinets, including a 3-by-5-foot island; laminate countertops; and standard double-tub stainless-steel sink with standard single-lever faucet. Include energy-efficient wall oven, cooktop, ventilation system, built-in microwave, dishwasher, garbage disposal, and custom lighting. Add new resilient flooring. Finish with painted walls, trim, and ceiling. 90.6% Return

Major Kitchen Remodel (Upscale)

Update outmoded 200-square-foot kitchen with 30 linear feet of top-of-the-line custom cherry cabinets with built-in sliding shelves and other interior accessories. Include stone countertops with imported ceramic or glass tile backsplash; built-in refrigerator, cooktop, and 36-inch commercial grade range and vent hood; built-in warming drawer, trash compactor, and built-in combination microwave and convection oven. Install high-end undermount sink with designer faucets, and built-in water filtration system. Add new general and task lighting including low-voltage under-cabinet lights. Install cork flooring, cherry trim. 84.6% Return

And what are the price ranges of these three different remodel types?  Zillow identifies a minor remodel as being priced from $14,000 – $20,000, a mid-range remodel as $20,000 – $40,000 and an upscale remodel as $40,000+.  As you can see the highest return on investment is the minor kitchen remodel.

Resource: Zillow: The Value of Home Improvements

 

AOLrealestate

Tom Kraeutler real estate expert for AOL Real Estate, recently outlined the most important items to increase your home value pertaining to kitchen remodels:

  1. Creative Counter Tops: Tom suggest any natural stone to give it an upscale look.
  2. A Better Back-splash: Complement your counter top by following through with an upgraded backsplash.
  3. Cabinet Camouflage: Refresh and refinish is the way to go!
  4. Accessorize: Replace tired door and drawer pulls with new ones.
  5. Fresh Faucet: Affordable way to upgrade kitchen is with a new faucet.
  6. Star-Worthy Appliances: Dated appliances bring down the overall look of a kitchen and bring up the energy bill.
  7. Better lighting: Improves function and warmth of the space.
  8. New flooring: Outdated and worn flooring detracts from the rest of the kitchen.

Resource: AOL Real Estate

What We’ve Learned?

Based on three leading resources for real estate and home improvement we can certainly see some trends.  The major take away: you don’t have to break your bank account in order to see a high ROI on your kitchen remodel.

It’s important to remember the basics.  Each expert highlights the idea that you can give your kitchen a face lift and not fret that you aren’t going to see a return in your home value.  We suggest taking small steps that yield high value.  You don’t have to take out a second mortgage to remodel your kitchen.

Considering a kitchen-remodel that makes a dramatic difference without draining your account?  Just click here to schedule your phone consultation using our on-line scheduling system.  Or feel free to call us direct during business hours at 209-622-3610!

Scott Monday (email) is Founder and CEO of Trinity Renovation, Inc., the parent company of kitchenCRATE.  Learn more about Scott at Google+ or on Facebook.