Five Best Home Renovations for the Biggest Return on Investment

by Lindsay Clarke and Nicolle Gust

You are ready to take advantage of this seller’s market and sell your home. Likely you are upgrading, downsizing or looking to cash out. Either way, you want your sale to yield the most profit. This may require you to update some features in your home. What projects will make sure you have the highest Return on Investment (ROI)? The obvious first course of action is generally to replace old appliances and update flooring, which are important, but won’t necessarily yield the highest increase of your home’s value. Some renovations have little to no return. So what home improvements should you tackle first?

First, speak with your real estate professional. A local realtor with local knowledge can provide you with recently sold comparatives in your neighborhood to make sure you do not over-improve your home. Considering the conditions and features of similarly sold properties in your neighborhood is vital to making sure your remodel will pencil.
Remodeling magazine compared the average costs of 21 remodeling projects in 149 markets throughout the U.S. Their 2018 Cost Vs. Value Report revaled the top five home projects with the best ROI.

Top Five Home Projects with the Highest ROI:

1. Garage door replacement

Get a new four-section garage door with new heavy-duty galvanized steel tracks. Not only will this improvement increase reliability and efficiency, but a new garage door will modernize the exterior of your home.

2. Manufactured stone veneer

Stone veneer also does wonders for curb appeal. Replacing existing vinyl siding or stucco with manufactured stone veneer adds dimension and will surely add cash to your pocket.

3. Entry door replacement (steel)

You know the saying, “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.” Well, the front door is the gateway to the interior of your home. Replace your old door with a new factory finished 20-gauge steel unit and you’ve made a wonderful investment.

4. Deck addition (wood)

A yard is one of the most coveted aspects of home ownership. A deck allows for maximum enjoyment. Adding a wooden deck will substantially increase your home value and enjoyability.

5. Minor kitchen remodel

A common misconception is you must completely overhaul your kitchen to see a return on investment. The opposite is true—a minor kitchen overhaul that includes updating cabinetry, countertops, fixtures and appliances to more modernized styles will go a long way in recouping cost. Add some fresh paint and you may like it so much you no longer want to sell!
In northern Nevada, buyers are demanding a more updated home. With new home communities and higher prices, buyers want to substantiate their purchase with features and finishes that are “move-in” ready. Whether you plan on selling or staying in your home, it is always a good decision to know which home renovations will generate the most money at resale. With the help of your realtor, you can determine which projects to tackle that will be sure to increase your chances at landing towards the top of your market.

Lindsay Clarke & Nicolle Gust of the Clarke & Gust Group are residential real estate specialists in Reno-Sparks area with over 15 years of experience. For additional information or a personal market analysis of your home contact them at or visit

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