Best Value Home Improvement Projects

As we near the half-way mark of 2021 you may be thinking of home improvement projects you want to tackle yet this year. Now, more than ever, planning and budgeting is important.

The great thing is, you don’t have to research for hours to have a good understanding of what different projects cost and what you can expect to recoup on your investment. The Remodeling 2021 Cost vs. Value Report ( is a concise and accurate tool, all in one easy to navigate report.

Featured below are the top 5 projects in Seattle. Download the free Cost vs. Value Report to see all 22 featured projects and a more in-depth scope of work for each. Input your zip code for information that more closely resembles those projects in your neighborhood.

Garage Door Replacement

Garage Door Replacement

We all know the importance of first impressions. It’s no wonder four of the five top improvements all enhance street appeal. According to the Remodeling 2021 Cost vs. Value Report (, replacing the garage door tops the list with a potential 98% return on investment.

The example includes replacement of an older garage door and tracks with a new, four-section, insulated, high-tensile steel door, with lifetime warranty. Includes new heavy-duty galvanized steel tracks (reusing existing motorized opener), factory-applied paint, thermal panel seals, insulated windows in the top panel, galvanized steel hinges, and ball-bearing urethane rollers.

Average cost $4,068. Average resale value $3,986.

Manufactured Stone Veneer

Stone Veneer Accent

The second project with the highest possible return includes adding a stone veneer accent to the front of the home. This relatively modest investment can dramatically change the exterior and increase curb appeal.

Imagine a street of similarly designed homes and one of them has been upgraded with this classic look. If you were shopping for a home on that street, which one would pop out at you?

At a significant potential return of 93%, this upgrade has great value. The example includes removing 300 square feet of vinyl siding from the entire bottom third of the front of the home. Replace with a manufactured stone veneer, two layers of water-resistant barrier over bare sheathing, corrosion-resistant lath and fasteners, and a ½ inch mortar scratch coat and setting bed.

Average cost $11,265. Average resale value $10,477.

Siding Replacement

Vinyl: Upgrading your home with new vinyl siding rates as the third highest valued investment. This improvement could yield a return as high as 87.6%. It includes replacing 1250 square feet of siding with factory trim around openings and at corners.

Fiber-cement: Another popular siding product is fiber-cement. It too has a significant 85.6% return. The example includes the same specifications as above in addition to being factory primed and painted before installation.

Average cost $19,620. Average resale value $17,301 – Vinyl.

Average cost $23,240. Average resale value $19,887 – Fiber-cement.

Minor Kitchen Remodel – Midrange

Minor Kitchen Remodel

Coming in at number four is a modest remodel of a 200 square foot kitchen that is currently functional but in need of cosmetic updates.

Leaving the cabinet boxes intact it includes replacing the cabinet and drawer fronts with shaker style wood panels and new hardware. Replace laminate countertops, sink, faucet, and flooring. Paint ceiling, walls, and trim. Replace cook top/oven range and refrigerator with new energy-efficient models.

Being careful to stay within a modest budget this type of remodel could yield an 87.7% return.

Average cost $29,183. Average resale value 25,599.

Window Replacement

Window Replacement (Wood)

Vinyl: The last, but not least improvement, includes replacing ten, older 3×5 double-hung windows. New windows are insulated, low-E and include simulated-divided-light panes and custom exterior paint finish. Exterior trim to match existing and is not disturbed. This upgrade is expected to bring an 87.6% return on investment.

Wood: Upgrade from vinyl to wood windows with the same specifications as above and see just a slightly lower return at 84.4%.

Average cost $20,788. Average resale value $18,209 – Vinyl

Average cost $24,539. Average resale value $20,718 – Wood

©2021 Zonda Media, a Delaware corporation. Complete data from the 2021 Cost vs. Value Report can be downloaded free at

If you need assistance with any projects or upgrades, we can connect you with the appropriate service professionals for your specific needs. Just let us know how we can help by giving us a call at 425-775-9085 or submitting an online Work Request. 

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