Transforming problem houses into Dream Homes

Current Cost Data

Henley Wood, the publishers of Remodeling Magazine, put out an annual report on the cost of remodeling construction. It is interesting in many ways, not the least in illustrating the wild variances in construction costs from region to region. The 2019 report is no different.

Based on this year’s report, of the 22 most common remodeling projects, none, on a national basis, provides more than a 95% return on investment, and most only return between 50 and 75%.

However, locally, in the San Francisco Bay Area, some mostly cosmetic upgrades to your house can seriously add to the value of your property.

For instance, if you add a 3-foot high stone veneer on the front of your house, that costs about $11,000 to do, but it adds about $16,700 to the value of the house, a return of over 50% on your investment.

Another cosmetic upgrade that returns more than it’s cost is replacing your garage door. That not only improves the look of your home, but you will recoup over 137% of the cost of the improvement. If you are planning on selling your home in the near future, these little investments can pay off, not only in terms of curb appeal and a quicker sale, but also financially.

The other thing the report makes clear is that the cost of construction in the Bay Area is significantly higher than the rest of the country.

The cost of adding a luxury master suite (adding a master bath and ensuite bathroom, with premium finishes), is about $271,000 nationally. On the west coast the cost is about $310,000. But, here in the Bay Area, the cost is almost $365,000. That is a 35% premium cost for living and building in the Bay Area.

For most of my clients, adding on to their homes, or building an accessory dwelling isn’t necessarily “all about the Benjamins”. One of the things an architect does, is help you make the best investments in your home, both financially, and emotionally.

Yes, my clients want to be prudent and get the most for their investment. But, they are investing in their quality of life. They are investing in their family, making a home where they can be happy and build memories.

If you are planning on remodeling or adding on to your home, or adding an accessory dwelling to your property, you are making an investment not only in the financial value of your home, but in the better functioning of your home, in a better environment and emotional value in your home.

The entire report is available to down load. You will have to log in and provide some information to get access to the report.

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